A Pastoral Message from Christ Church
Dear Friends of Christ Church,
Mr. Buchanan comes to our house a couple of times a year to tune the piano. It’s important that he come because we use our piano a lot, and because New Jersey weather effects the sound significantly. It’s an old piano from a Philadelphia company that’s no longer in business, but the piano is still a beauty, and we like to take care of it. I’m trying to stress that it is not because of neglect, indifference, or inattention that we ask Mr. Buchanan to come. We ask him to tune the instrument because we love it and it brings great joy to our lives and is a work of art, not just in its sound, but also in its appearance.
Lent is coming. I’d like you to think of Lent this year as being like Mr. Buchanan coming to tune our piano. I won’t tell you that you are terrible sinners who have neglected God, because that’s not true. I won’t tell you that you are indifferent to your world or your neighbor because that’s not true, either. I think we look forward to Lent because we appreciate what it is about at the very heart of our lives.
I believe we look forward to Lent because it is a season where we tend to that which and who we love. Our faith brings joy, perspective and caring to our lives. Our lives are so much fuller because God fills them. But like the piano strings that get pulled and stretched from use and shifts of the cultural weather, it is good periodically to do some retuning. Like the piano, we want our lives to ring out with actions and emotions and sounds that make this a better world.
This Lent we will offer some opportunities for spiritual retuning at Christ Church. I hope some of them will attract your participation, and perhaps you’ll even invite a friend to join you. But if what you need is not being offered here this Lent, then do yourself a spiritual favor and find an alternative way to intentionally spend the time and energy it takes to retune your soul psychologically, emotionally, and actively.
Our annual observance of Lent is six full weeks, long enough to break some old habits and also to build some new ones. If you’re on a diet, six weeks is long enough to lose some serious weight or build some serious muscle. The same is true for our spirits.
Finally, and most importantly, Lent is a time to come to love God even more. It is a time to observe and recognize and give thanks for how much God loves this world and each of us in it. That love moves us to strive to improve some of our wounded relationships, to expand our embrace of those in need, and most of all to worship God not just as a matter of rote, but from the depths of our grateful being.
I will be praying for you this Lent and ask for your prayers as well, and hopefully we can do some retuning for the sake of Christ in this holy season.
Joyfully yours in Christ,
The Reverend Timothy Mulder,