March 14, 2020

Beautiful Savior

March 14, 2020


Psalm 95

Exodus 16:27-35

John 4:1-6


Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song. . . .
In his hand are the depths of the earth,
    and the mountain peaks belong to him.
The sea is his, for he made it,
    and his hands formed the dry land. (from Ps 95)

In the spirit of the psalm, a favorite Nashville writer, Margaret Renkl, is looking for a new way to observe Lent. She says, “Instead of giving up something for Lent, I’m planning to make a heartfelt offering. In times like these, it makes more sense to seek out daily causes for praise than daily reminders of lack. So here is my resolution: to find as many ordinary miracles as a waterlogged winter can put forth, as many resurrections as an eerily early springtime will allow. Tiny beautiful things are bursting forth in the darkest places, in the smallest nooks and deepest cracks of the hidden world, and I am going to keep looking every single day until I find one.” (The New York Times, “One Tiny Beautiful Thing,” 23 February, 2020)

Like Jesus sitting by the well in Samaria, weary from the journey through unfriendly territory, we are tired of the dreariness of winter, the waves of dissension that overcome us like the floods, the sadness of homelessness and hopelessness, the pain of grief and illness, the contagion, not only of virulent disease, but of misleading claims and corruption. 

Let us now, this very Lent, turn away from our alienation and look to God our Maker, who holds in his hands the mountain peaks and the deepest valleys, the God who cares for us his flock. Let us praise God in thanksgiving for the joy that comes from living at peace with God and with our neighbors. Let us drink of the Living Water Jesus holds out for us.


  • Exodus 16:9-10 says that even in the middle of a barren desert, even in the shadow of the people’s grumbling and dismay, they could look and see in the distance “the glory of the Lord.” What reveals God’s glory to you now in the midst of a time of difficulty and descension? 
  • How does Lent prepare us for Easter joy?


Sing or read “Fairest Lord Jesus” and talk about how we experience our Beautiful Savior. (UMH 189)


God of life, we thank you for sending Jesus, our beautiful Savior, to glorify your name. Open our eyes to the new thing you are doing through Christ our Lord, who heals all people by his perfect love. Make us ready to celebrate the power of his resurrection. In his name we pray. Amen.