posted Feb 21, 2017, 10:24 AM by Christina Barnes   [ updated Feb 21, 2017, 10:57 AM ]

Lent, which will begin the day after Ash Wednesday (March 1st), is a period of self-examination, a time of preparation as we journey to the cross, recognizing both the suffering and the precious gift of our Lord Jesus. As a spiritual practice, we often give up something treasured or dear: chocolate, meat, bread, wine, or desserts. Lent, which means to turn, is a time where the days grow longer, the sun begins to warm the earth, and indeed farmers turn the earth in preparation for new growth. As Christians, it is a time for us to prepare our hearts just as early Christians did in anticipation of their baptism on Easter Sunday.

What if this year, instead of giving up something, we take on something? May I suggest we take on our belovedness, the love God has for each of us through Jesus. To do this, for five weeks during Lent (March 5- April 7), we will gather in small groups to learn about our belovedness using the book, Life of the Beloved, by Henri Nouwen. (The books are $10.00 if you purchase them through the office or you may buy your own.) You may choose the group that works best for your schedule. Sign up at church or by emailing or calling Eva or Heather.  You will not be disappointed. This Lent make the choice to turn towards something that has the potential to change your life perspective. Understanding the depth of God’s love for us is vital to living the abundant life Christ made possible through the cross. Join a group. Hear what belovedness means…


“To be chosen as the Beloved of God is something radically different. Instead of excluding others, it includes others. Instead of rejecting others as less valuable, it accepts others in their own uniqueness. It is not a competitive, but a compassionate choice. Our minds have great difficulty in coming to grips with such a reality. Maybe our minds will never understand it. Perhaps it is only our hearts that can accomplish this.” Henri Nouwen


   The groups are listed below. Note there is a host home, a facilitator, and a time. Choose the best option and sign up. I look forward to many discussions in the weeks to come.

Life of the Beloved Small Groups

March 5th - April 7th


Host                                 Facilitator                 Day/Time

Sonya and Wade Rozier                      Stan Carmical                  Sunday/6:30pm

Lillian and Lacy Koonce                        Betty Hall-Robinson        Monday/1:00pm

Maureen and Don Metzger                 Brownie McLeod              Thursday/7:00pm

Betsy Lee                                           Eva Ruth                         Thursday/11:00am

Zac and Sarah Griffin-Greene            Zac Greene                      Tuesday/7:00pm

Nancy and James Martin                    Robbie Harrell                 Tuesday/7:00pm

*Wednesday Together Mixed Group   David Ruth                      Wednesday/6:15pm

*Wednesday Together Women’s         TBA                                Wednesday/6:15pm

Experiencing God Sunday School         Linda Metzger                Sunday/10:00am

Upper Room Sunday School                 Julia McDuffie               Sunday/10:00am


* There will be an alternative Wednesday Night activity for others