The gift of temptation usually bring images of resisting evil, in whatever form we imagine it – sometimes in the form of serious sins and transgressions and sometimes in the seemingly benign form of chocolate or pizza. In the Dark Wood, though, temptation comes in the confusing form of “doing good.” Pastor Eric Elnes says, based on our responses to them, temptations are a way of defining ourselves. He goes on to say that we are more often undone by the good we’re tempted to do rather than the evil. Discerning the good we are called to do and the good we are specifically not called to do is such an important task of discipleship, even Jesus had to deal with it.

 

Join us Sunday morning as we look at the Dark Wood Gift of Temptation and how it leads us to discover our true calling and purpose by dangling “shoulds” dictated only by logic, outside expectation, or shiny “rewards” in front of us. We are tempted away from the path our intuition and imagination suggest is right for us – the path that helps us bring the best of our energy and joy to the world. The more we’re willing to accept this gift, the more we are willing to face the temptations that erode our wholeheartedness and leave us exhausted.

 

See you Sunday!

Rev. Eve Williams
Associate Pastor, Paradise Valley United Methodist Church
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During Lent we are doing a worship series on the Gifts of the Dark Wood and exploring how times of difficulty and failure become places that reveal insights to us about ourselves and our beliefs. Instead of living our lives trying to avoid the dark places, we learn to see and receive their gifts to us. Uncertainty abounds in our world, given the realities of economics, politics, terrorism, and our increasingly fragile planet. We want to cultivate a strong and durable trust in God as we face uncertain times. We want to discover a way to receive and understand the insights from uncertainty as life unfolds for us. Join us Sunday for our Lenten worship series and the gifts that will come to each of us as we journey to the cross and Easter Sunday.

Read More about Gifts of the Dark Wood and the Lenten season at PVUMC.

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