The season of Lent is drawing near. On Tuesday at 6:00 pm, we will celebrate at our annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper and highlight the ways that God is working in our youth ministry. Then, on Wednesday at 6:30 pm, we will gather for worship on Ash Wednesday to begin our Lenten journey together. We will put ashes on our foreheads and spend time in silence and prayer as we remember, together, that it is from dust that we have come and to dust that we shall return. As we contemplate our mortality, we also remember that God calls us to repentance so we might truly believe the Gospel. Lent is a season that calls us to reflect and consider our commitment to Jesus Christ. Often, during Lent, Christians fast or take up spiritual disciplines that help them grow in their relationship with Christ as we prepare for Easter.

The practice of spiritual disciplines during this season also helps us to develop the fruit of the Spirit. Paul lists the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23:

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things.

The fruit of the Spirit are developed as we submit every area of our lives to Jesus. This Lent I want our church to focus on growing and sharing kindness, by celebrating 40 Days of Kindness.

My hope is that our community would witness Christ’s call to unity through simple and sacrificial acts of kindness from each of us. In a world divided by candidates, platforms, issues, and parties, Jesus calls us all to unity. This unity is born out of love and expressed to our neighbors through kindness. But kindness, like unity in Christ, is a fruit that must be cultivated over time through daily choices.

I hope you’ll join us on this journey by CLICKING HERE for simple ways to cultivate kindness throughout the season of Lent. I believe that random acts of kindness bless those who receive them and help us create a more unified and caring culture and community. After all, the fruits of the Spirit, like the season of Lent, are not intended simply to transform us but to change the world around us.

Let’s choose kindness this Lent and work to love our neighbors well.

Jonathan Smith
For Jesus. For People. For Community.
(And For Kindness!)