Church hosting weekly lunch devotions for Lent

Published 2:00 pm Thursday, March 2, 2023

By JOYANNA LOVE | Managing Editor

Mt. Nebo/ Pleasant Grove Methodist Church is creating opportunities to pause, reflect on the season of Lent and fellowship with the return of its weekly Lenten Lunches.

Each event is free and open to the public.

Tony Hughes, pastor of Mt. Nebo/ Pleasant Grove Methodist Church, said he was glad the series could be held with its full schedule this year after being canceled or limited in recent years because of COVID-19 restrictions and concerns.

The weekly devotions, which are at noon each Wednesday through April 5, began on March 1.

Pastor Wayne Hughes of The Church at Bethel spoke on “The Beauty of the Cross.”

“It was a place of suffering and extreme agony, we know, for our Lord, but when you read Hebrews 12:1-2, It says, ‘Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us. Let us run the race with patience … Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the Father.’ What is the beauty of the cross? It is the joy set before him … he looked past the suffering because he knew it would be worth the price to buy us back that had previously been captive.”

Hughes said the beauty of the cross is the transforming love of God on display, and the hope of a good future.

“I cannot define God by the circumstances and situations or the way he answered my prayer because his nature, his character is so loving and kind,” Hughes said. “No matter what we go through, I have set my mind above. The beauty of the cross is that we have salvation in Jesus, that we have hope beyond this life. We have hope eternal.”

He said what Jesus did on the cross means “I don’t have to be stuck in what used to be or what I was.”

“The beauty of the cross is you don’t have to weather a storm alone. You don’t have to carry bitterness or unforgiveness” because “you can walk in the light of his (Jesus’) love,” Hughes said.

The Lenten Lunches are held at Mt. Nebo Methodist Church, 2185 County Road 30 in Clanton.