Today is the first day of Lent. This will be a 46-day journey of which six of those are Sundays giving us the 40-day Lenten period. There are many ways to celebrate Lent but we as a church use this time as a period of self-examination and reflection. This is a great opportunity to turn our focus onto Jesus Christ and to look into the mirror to see if the reflection resembles Jesus. Acts 4:13When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.” We want people to say we have been with Jesus. 2 Kings 23:25Neither before nor after Josiah was there a king like him who turned to the Lord as he did—with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his strength, in accordance with all the Law of Moses.” Not only do we want people to say we have been with Jesus but a people who turned back to God with everything we had. This enables us then to have the same power that was with Peter and John. Ephesians 1:19I pray that you will begin to understand how incredibly great his power is to help those who believe him. It is that same mighty power 20 that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in heaven, 21 far, far above any other king or ruler or dictator or leader. Yes, his honor is far more glorious than that of anyone else either in this world or in the world to come. 22 And God has put all things under his feet and made him the supreme Head of the Church— 23 which is his body, filled with himself, the Author and Giver of everything everywhere.”
                Our theme this year is “Fearing the Sovereign God”. This will be a time to reflect on the Sovereign God and to assess how we respond to Him. Do we really understand Revelation 4:8Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty who was and is to come”? Lets just say if we did we would all live differently so that is why we continue to pray for the power of the Holy Spirit to come upon us. We will also be focusing on renewing the fear of God in our lives. As time goes by many Christians who make up the church fear God less and less as the sovereignty of God is replaced with the accolades of man’s abilities. 2 Peter 2:1But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves.” Please understand this is already happening, as is this. Psalm 36:1 tells us "There is no fear of God before their eyes." This explains the situation the church finds itself in and the reason for this response from God. Proverbs 1:28 Then they will call to me but I will not answer; they will look for me but will not find me, 29 since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the Lord." Because of this lack of fear and pride, we will use this time as a time of repentance and humility before God and join with Habakkuk saying Habakkuk 3:22 “Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, Lord. Repeat them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy. 19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights." If once again, we as Christians who are called by His name, would humble ourselves and pray and seek His face and turn from our wicked ways, then God will hear from heaven, and will forgive our sin and will heal our land. 15 Then His eyes would be open and His ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place (our hearts). 16 I have chosen and consecrated this temple (our bodies, not a building) so that my Name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
                So as we begin this journey, make a commitment to be in the word everyday and then meditate upon it throughout the day. There will be lots of scripture so re-read them and the contents of the passage around the verse. As you read and pray, listen carefully to the Spirit’s prompting. Look to answer the question of do you truly fear the sovereign God. Be honest with yourself and God. I will give you this warning: don’t participate in this without your armour on. Ephesians 6:11Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.” Satan is on the prowl. 1 Peter 5:8Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. ( TLB - looking for some victim to tear apart) ”