The past two weeks we have focused on two of the 7 deadly vices and 7 lively virtues. These represent disordered loves and an ordered, virtuous life. You may want to access these sermons by clicking here. Two weeks ago we began with pride and humility, and last week Mark talked about envy and kindness. Here is a list of all of them:
- pride and humility
- envy and kindness
- anger and forgiveness
- sloth and zeal
- lust and purity
- gluttony and self-control
- greed and generosity
Because God loves us so much, he wants to transform our lives in all of these areas. Lent is a time for self-examination and restoration. All this is done in the context of the space of grace God has prepared for us. He already loves and delights in us.
This week, March 17th, I will be talking about the disordered love of sloth and the corresponding virtue of zeal. Sloth is a unique deadly device because it is manifested in a failure to trust, surrender, and love God for who he is. It really is one of the most deadliest sins of our time. Sloth does not just mean laziness. We can be very active and be very full of sloth. We avoid being transformed and the hard work necessary for that by endless distractions. The antidote is zeal. That doesn’t mean doing more so much as being more. We will look at how this works out in friendships and marriages as well as the famous movie, “Groundhog Day.”
Come, hear, see. Invite your friends and family if you dare.
Lenten Prayer and Fasting – Saturday, March 16
As a church family, All Saints Dallas has been called to a rhythm of prayer and fasting during Lent. The focus of our fasting and prayers will be on our move downtown; to concentrate on both internal preparation of the heart and the external preparation in our new neighborhood. Prayer – Each Saturday until Easter, wherever you are, we ask your prayers for 15 minutes, during your regular devotion or between 8-10 am. Every Thursday in the newsletter there will be a different prayer, with verses and specific prayer requests, for you to pray through that Saturday. Fasting – Choose the fast you feel called to; missing a meal, giving up a particular food/drink for the day, or a complete fast for that day. If you can’t exercise your fast on Saturday, pick another time throughout the week. Let us pray this, not just as individuals, but as a church family together. We’d love to hear about your experience!
Prayer for the Heart of the City
Heavenly Father, in your Word you have given us a vision of that holy City to which the nations of the world will bring their glory. As we wait for that glorious time, we humbly ask you to send your Holy Spirit to touch the hearts of the people of Dallas. We ask you to encourage us all to seek the living truth, your Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, and his holy church. Give us generous hearts to follow your call for All Saints Dallas to be living lights of our Savior, a true haven of rest, encouragement, hope, and mission in and for the heart of Dallas. All this we ask in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Scriptures to meditate on:
Revelation 21:1-3, 9-11
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.
Then came one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues and spoke to me, saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.
“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.
“You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven
There have been countless people involved in the Crossroads project the last few years. As we near the end of this process, we want to specifically pray for wisdom, energy, favor with the city of Dallas, and physical safety for a few of the companies, and the individuals we’ve worked with, who have been with us since almost the beginning of this journey:
- For our contractors, Joeris Construction, especially our project and job site managers, and all their subcontractors-carpenters, electricians, plumbers, landscapers, and stone and brick masons
- For our architects, Cunningham Architects, and their subcontractors, engineers, and artisans
- For our owners’ representative, Building Solutions, specifically our project manager and their consultants