The weather is improving and Lent is just around the corner! Many of us pay homage to Jesus fasting for forty days in the desert by giving up a particular food. After practicing that ritual myself for many years, I decided to make Lent more of a inspirational practice towards emotional well-being. As a church, I think we can all aim for an emotionally healthy congregation, one that focuses on positivity and gratitude. Why give up something that makes you happy, like chocolate? The result of breaking the negativity habit has a better personal outcome than temporarily giving up dessert. By concentrating on positivity for forty days, this may become a habit that is difficult to break!
Some of these ideas sound trite; but many trite thoughts are so because of their inherent truth. I have always believed that if you want to be happy, surround yourself with happy people! This also applies to our attitude as a church; we have so much for which we should be grateful. Mother Sarah has brought energy, creativity and thought-provoking sermons to our church. Her dynamic personality has drawn new members like never before. Our staff is multi-talented and they are expanding many programs both in the church and in the greater Wake Forest community. The Preschool is once again filled with children and ready to serve young families both from within our parish and the community. We have a beautiful church and grounds to inspire us, especially during Spring. Our congregation is growing in diversity and number; each one of us brings a different strength to our congregation. And the work of the Strategic Design Team will pay positive benefits for many years to come.
Philippians 4:8 encourages us towards positive thinking: Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable … if anything is excellent or praiseworthy … think about such things.
I challenge you all to focus on positivity and gratitude during Lent; not only in your personal lives but in your life as a member of St. John’s. We have so much to be thankful for, even during this time of Covid and being apart. Great things are continuing to happen in our church!