At the end of the service, the congregation was encouraged to fill out a card with trials, cares, or difficulties they needed to let go of and give to the Lord. After people came forward, the cards were collected and placed in a copper fire pit at the alter.
The worship team came back to close the service with Chris Tomlin's song, I Will Rise and the church elders carried the fire pit, containing the burdens of God's people, to the front of the building. People made their way to the front entrance of the building where the elders then placed firewood and kindling in the fire pit and set it ablaze. The smoke rose up to gray skies above--letting those burdens go for the Lord to eradicate them.
As they left, each was given a small but significant gift--a young, tender flower growing in rich soil to signify the new work of the Lord to be done in their lives.
Later on, the ashes from those burden cards were used to cover the cross to the left and then it was preserved with a special coating. The cross hangs in the sanctuary at New Life Church where time allows the ashes to change color and hue. A reminder of the constant care our Lord takes to bless our lives.
ISAIAH Chapter 61
1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor
3 and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
10 I delight greatly in the LORD;
11 For as the soil makes the sprout come up
You have a chance to plant your life in new soil.