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The Hunger Games


Last week we saw that the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Jesus was fresh off a 40-day fast and the text says that He was famished! This was Jesus in His humanity. Divinity could’ve called up Popeye’s and had some food delivered. But operating in His humanity, in His man-Godness, Jesus was hungry!

40 days and 40 nights of fasting. Did you give up any food item(s) for Lent? If so, I hope that it is going well for you. We’re a little over a week into it, and sometimes we have the best of intentions, but intentions don’t cut it. There are temptations in the wilderness of life. Intentions can give in to temptations and cause you to go where you had no business going and do what you had no business doing.

Jesus finds Himself facing deprivation. Being without physical food for extended periods of time can bring on feelings of loss and lack, as if something has been taken away from you.

“The tempter came and said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.’”

Matthew 4:3

And right there in the wilderness, faced with temptation, distraction, and hunger, knowing that He could easily take those stones and make a sandwich, the hunger games start! And a decision needs to be made.

Jesus shows us how to deal with situations where you feel as though you are being deprived of something; that you’re the one who’s being short-changed and it has stirred up an unhealthy hunger within you. Jesus shows us that just because you can do something doesn’t mean that you should.

But He [Jesus] answered, “It is written,

‘One does not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

Matthew 4:4

We can’t be guided by what the world says that we should do. And we can’t be guided by what we feel we have the right to do. As soldiers in the army of the Lord, we get our marching orders from above. You don’t have to give in to temptation, you’ve got the God of the universe on your side!

“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

[For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.]”

Matthew 6:13

Worship with us in-person or online this Sunday, the second Sunday of Lent, at 10:00am. For online worship go to To register for our limited indoor worship, you can sign up at: .

Lenten Challenge: Take 13!

It only takes 13 minutes a day to read thru the Bible in a year! Take the challenge and Take 13! There’s more info and some helpful resources on the website.

Prayer Line - Mondays at 8:00 am! Call (727) 731-7163 for 15 minutes of power-packed prayer and devotion!

We remember the life and ministry of Rev. Junius Dotson, General Secretary of Discipleship Ministries of the UMC, who transitioned to eternal glory this week. Rev. Dotson is the author of Soul Rest, has preached at our MO Annual Conference, and was an excellent leader and pastor. May he rest in glory.

May the peace of God be upon you and your family!

Pastor Linda

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