First Sunday in Lent

The Wonder In the Wandering

Sunday, February 18 at 11:00 am | Bulletin

A voice said to him, “Elijah, what are you doing here?” I Kings 19:12

“Oh Lord, my God,
When I, in awesome wonder
Consider all the worlds
Thy hands have made.
I see the stars,
I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, my Savior God to Thee,
How great Thou art, how great Thou art!”

I remember when I was a teenager, watching one of my favorite TV programs, Designing Women. In one particular episode, the inimitable character, Julia Sugarbaker, sang this hymn at her friend, Charlene’s, church. The scene was powerful. The actor, Dixie Carter, has the voice of an angel and it rang out, strong and sure over the fictional congregation. In the show, Julia was, with her voice and with her presence, demonstrating the power of women as witnesses to the gospel, in a church that did not believe women could be in authority positions. That theme certainly contributed to its impact on me, for sure. Regardless of the show’s mini-lesson, though, I still remember the hymn and Dixie singing it. My chest buzzed and my eyes filled with tears. It was hard to deny in that moment the “awesome wonder” God has made. I feel that way each time I hear it, especially when sung as a community of faith from the pews, with the power of many voices coming together to proclaim God’s awe-some work in our world.

This first Sunday of Lent, we’ll worship with that thought on our hearts. We will sing this hymn and consider how it should be an impossible task to follow Jesus into and out of the wilderness, on his path to Jerusalem, the cross, the grave, and beyond, without experiencing utter awe.

Let’s be in wonder together.

See you Sunday!

Pastor Lea

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