This Sunday is the first Sunday in Lent. During this Season, which is 40 days long (not counting the Sundays, which are like “little Easters”), our young people will be exploring stories from the New Testament about Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness and Jesus’ encounters with Nicodemus, a woman drawing water at a well, a man born blind, and a friend named Lazarus.
The Season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday March 1 and lasts until Easter Sunday. It is a season of quiet reflection when we bring our deep thoughts and feelings to God. Often people observe Lent with something the church calls spiritual disciplines, such as prayer, meditation, fasting, and service to others.
At Faithworks, this Sunday’s reading from the gospel of Matthew 4:1-11, tells a story of the beginnings of Jesus’ ministry. Jesus is led by God’s spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Wilderness is a place of seeking, journeying, and struggling with the possibilities. The temptations facing Jesus in the wilderness are the same temptations facing many of us today: to be selfish and take care of our own needs first, to get attention by showing off, and to be ruler of the world. Rulers get lots of attention, make all the decisions, and get whatever they want. Jesus refused to take such power, choosing instead to obey God. Jesus chooses to serve God and God alone, and the tempter left.
In our group, older children know what it is like to be tempted, to feel pressured to make choices. They are developing their own sense of what is right and what is wrong and starting to feel the influences of commercial advertising, peer pressure, and ideas about what is considered socially acceptable or “cool.” This session will help children explore what it means to make good choices about the way to live and to compare Jesus’ responses with their own. This theme also offers the opportunity to introduce children to Lent as a season of reflection and to some spiritual practices. Pray that young people will be open to explore the many faces of temptation and reflecting on the choices they make.
All children and youth are welcome to join us for Bible story time and activities on the 2nd floor after the time of conversation with the pastor. Childcare is available for children 4 and under on the 2nd floor as well.