Ash Wednesday: 14 Feb – Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18 ~ on giving, prayer and fasting

Ash Wednesday

+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!

Opening Prayer

Lord Jesus, send Your Spirit to open my heart and mind to all the Father has for me through the reading of the Scriptures. Help me to recognize Your presence in the disturbing events surrounding me. And reveal to me the way of the cross as my source of life and of resurrection. Quiet my heart that I may experience the power of Your resurrection and bear witness to Your living presence here around me. I ask this of You, Jesus, who revealed the Father and sent Your Spirit. Amen.
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Gospel Reading: Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18 (NLT)

+ on giving – “Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven. When you give to someone in need, don’t do as the hypocrites do—blowing trumpets in the synagogues and streets to call attention to their acts of charity! I tell you the truth, they have received all the reward they will ever get. But when you give to someone in need, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Give your gifts in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.

+ on prayer – “When you pray, don’t be like the hypocrites who love to pray publicly on street corners and in the synagogues where everyone can see them. I tell you the truth, that is all the reward they will ever get. But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.
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+ on fasting – “And when you fast, don’t make it obvious, as the hypocrites do, for they try to look miserable and disheveled so people will admire them for their fasting. I tell you the truth, that is the only reward they will ever get. But when you fast, comb your hair and wash your face. Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.
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Prayers of Petition:

Heavenly Father: Pour out Your Spirit on me that I may have the heart, mind and strength of Jesus, especially during this season of Lent.

+ Give me Your heart, that I may respond with compassion and generosity to the needy people around me….
Lord, lead me to those in need.

+ Give me Your mind, that in the quiet of Your presence I may change the way I think about the world around me….
Lord, show me where I’m wrong.

+ Give me Your strength, that I may become more like You through the small sacrifices I make during this season….
Lord, make me a cheerful witness.

Heavenly Father: You know my heart and everything about me. Use this season to make me more like Your Son, Jesus Christ; that will be reward enough. I ask this in His name. Amen
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“More Like Jesus Would I Be” – Phoebe and Albert Chen (William H. Doane / Fanny Crosby)


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Closing

Lord God, thank You for Your Word that has enabled me to better understand Your will. May Your Spirit enlighten my actions and grant me the strength to practice what Your Word has revealed. I ask this through my Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen.
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+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!



Categories: Life in Christ

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