03-29-15 Moments of Courage: The Crowds and the Temple

Welcome to Holy Week!  I’d like to encourage you not to think of Easter as a “Sunday morning thing” so much as a celebration that you’ll want to spend all week leading up to.

In fact, here at First Covenant, we don’t even call it “Easter” -- we rather prefer to think of it as “Resurrection Sunday” (to remind us of just what exactly it is that we’re celebrating, and to help us make that one more step of removal from baskets, bonnets, bunnies, and chocolate in our minds).

So mid-week, spend some time thinking about what Jesus was going through, as He watched the surface-y excitement from Palm Sunday begin to fade, knowing full well what that would ultimately lead to for Him by the end of the week.

On Thursday, take some time to remember the Passover (since it’s that season, too, this year).  Remember what it would’ve meant for the Jews to spend time celebrating a God who loved them enough to save their bodies from bondage in Egypt -- and how that same, faithful God has promised to save their souls from bondage to sin.  Most Jews are still waiting for that last part, and they don’t know how Resurrection Sunday is really for them, too.  What would it have meant for Jesus to prepare for that last Passover, knowing what was about to happen?

On Friday, come join us for our Good Friday service here at First Covenant at 6:30 -- but spend some personal time with the Lord earlier in the day, praying and appreciating what it meant for Him to go through all of the lies and pains and tortures from all of those people who didn’t love Him -- and even the betrayals of those who did love Him -- so that He could save everyone... including all of those people who didn’t love Him...

On Saturday, spend time in prayer for any people around you who might have begun -- like the disciples on that Saturday two thousand years ago -- to doubt whether or not Jesus really was who He said that He was.  Was He really the Messiah?  Was He really the Son of God?  Did His life and death really change anything in their lives?  When you can’t see Him physically acting right in front of you, it can be hard for people to believe.  How can you and I be Christ’s ambassadors to a world that’s desperate to see God working in their lives?

And then, on Sunday, come join us as we celebrate Christ’s Resurrection from the dead.  We’ll be coming together as a church family for our annual family breakfast together at 9:00, and then we’ll be lifting up God’s name in worship at 10:30.  And as much as Good Friday is painful to remember, Resurrection Sunday is that much more amazingly exciting to remember.  We serve a God who was willing to die to save each and every one of us -- but one who was far too powerful to stay dead for long.

Jesus Christ was our pioneering big brother, trailblazing our way to eternal life.  How should His life and death and life again change the way that you live this week -- not just on Sunday, but all week long?