Ask: Lent 2023

In this Lenten season, you’ll find something for every person who’s ever had a question about their faith. 

At some point in every Christian’s life, they discover a question.  

You know the kind.

Not like, “How are you?” Or, “What kind of toothpaste should I buy?”

But, like, What really happens when we die?
Or, Why does this terrible stuff happen to people who do their best to follow God?
Or, How could God forgive me after what I’ve done?
Or, How do I know what God wants me to do next?

You know. That kind of question.

People often feel isolated when they discover that type of question, as if we are the only one asking it. For whatever reason, questions like this often feel like obstacles to our faith. Or questions feel forbidden, out-of-bounds. Biblically, we read characters like Job and Nicodemus asking questions that sound like ours, only to read what sounds like a very touchy response from God.

But what if faith requires us to ask questions?

What if questions are an essential part of our personal faith?  
What if we need questions to survive and grow as a community of faith?
You want to go there, don’t you? You want to believe dialogue with God, relationship with God, requires questions. 

Well, guess what? You’re in good company.

When we carefully read scripture, we discover questions everywhere. Hundreds of questions. Questions are created in the Garden of Eden. And in the Gospel of John, the first thing Jesus says to someone after his resurrection is a question.  

Once you start noticing questions, you see them everywhere.

Everyone has one, even if they keep it in their back pocket or tightly trapped behind their teeth. Bible people have plenty of questions, too. 

So what can we do with that?

Here’s our answer: this series called Ask. In this Lenten season, you’ll find something for every person who’s ever had a question about their faith. 

What’s included in the series?

You’ll find a whole bunch of stuff you can use let these questions guide your life together in worship and prayer.

Ashes to Go

This guide provides considerations for starting your own version of this meaningful Ash Wednesday ministry, complete with practical ideas and words for the rite.

Guides for the Season

Included with our Basics, we’ve assembled three guides to equip you to lead our community into the questions raised by the lectionary texts and echoed in their lives.

  • “Questions, Translated:” a guide to navigating the questions of Lent Year A
  • A guide to making use of longer readings. This resource includes recommendations for mixing it up with the long readings of Lent Year A…including a dramatic paraphrase of the story of the Man Born Blind and a special liturgy for Palm/Passion Sunday
  • A full index of every question in the readings

Preachers’ Notes

These preaching commentaries offer reflections on the text for every week, including Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday, each focused on the questions that drive the readings (and the relationships between the people in those readings).

Sunday Morning Liturgy

Featuring questions of every kind! These words for worship take you from the beginning of the service to the end, and include prayers for the Table.

Midweek Worship

This resource provides the liturgical framework and some words for worship for your Lenten midweek service. Each week’s service zooms in on a question raised by the Sunday reading, inviting participants to make connections between their own stories and the Bible. This resource provides a discussion guide designed to complement—or even take the place of—a sermon or reflection.

A daily Lenten devotional guide

Each day from Ash Wednesday to Easter, your people will encounter questions designed to help them learn, meditate, and pray. On Saturdays, the daily rhythm gives way to a prompt for the Question Jar, a multigenerational practice in which your whole household, no matter its size or makeup, can participate.

Ask: now live in the Market Stall!

Through this upcoming Lenten season, we hope you’ll discover, as we have, that questions are far from obstacles to our faith. Questions are the fuel that provide spark, energy, and momentum for our relationship with God and with each other. 

Want to get a sense of Ask before you buy? Click the button for a sample.

Ready to purchase? Click the button to head to the Ask Market Stall.

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