Each Lenten season, we are presented with an opportunity to set apart 40 days for a special journey with God. Ash Wednesday is the start of the 40 days of Lent, a time of preparation, leading up to the celebration of Easter Sunday. It can be a time for many things, such as to focus on daily prayer or bible study, or a time for self-denial. Self-denial is the voluntary act of giving up something that we cherish as a way of growing spiritually. It has a biblical foundation in Mark 8:34:
If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
This may include setting aside a regular time of prayer, participating in Bible study or reaching out to find new ways of service to others. Self-denial, or voluntarily giving up something we value, is another way to help us grow our relationship with God.
The Global Missions Committee encourages all Zion members to participate in self-denial as part of our spiritual journey through Lent. Lenten self-denial envelopes were included in the last packet of envelopes sent out. Extra envelopes will also be available at the Information Desk, or you can give online through your InFellowship account.
Place a small monetary amount in the provided self-denial envelope each day of Lent and return it to the church at the end of Holy Week. The funds collected have been and will continue to be used to support Zion’s mission projects, some of which rely solely on special gifts.
Our Zion Global Mission efforts extend in many directions:
- Quarterly financial support to Redeemer Lutheran in North Minneapolis.
- Quarterly financial support to All Kids Can Learn International (AKCLI) in Zambia, Africa.
- Mission Jamaica support.
- During this Lenten season, I want to focus more on reaching out to others via random acts of kindness. Random for me will still require a bit of planning though! I will brainstorm a list of potential things I can do to have handy at the ready. I will also keep my heart and mind open to what God may be compelling me to do when an opportunity presents itself. The smallest thing done for someone else has the potential to turn around someone’s day. more
- Minda has been thinking about what else she can do to make a difference in her own spiritual life, and in the lives of others, and has decided to make prayer her self-denial priority during Lent this year. “I will use the bulletin and a list of family and friends who need prayer, and daily pray for their needs. I will be a prayer advocate. I will pick the same time each day so that I will remember. The time of Lent is 40 days. I can make this happen for that time commitment. My goal is specific, which helps me focus on what I have chosen and easier to maintain. The self-denial for myself will be giving up of time to stop and pray. But to me, more importantly, is the call to make a difference through prayer. I hope that at the end of the 40 days, I have created a habit of prayer as a priority, enabling ... more
The Global Missions Committee thanks you for your partnership and encourages you and your family to continue sharing a special time to reflect on your daily life and to practice self-denial through your Lenten journey.