Hello Brothers & Sisters,
I hope that you have enjoyed our Lenten series, Cultivating & Letting Go. Pastor Kelly delivered the fifth installment in the series this past Sunday, in a message entitled, Cultivating Kinship. I thought her sermon over the Parable of Prodigal Son and the Older Brother was an excellent reminder of just how powerful Jesus’ stories were in the first century, and in our own day as well. Kelly shared how Jesus wants us to move beyond tolerance and acceptance to a radical new posture of kinship. I encourage you to continue giving that some thought. How can we reflect the good Father from Jesus’ parable?
Our Lent series comes to a close this weekend with Palm Sunday. As is our usual custom, we will begin our worship service with the help of our children and palm branches, as we remember Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Many folks know that Palm Sunday marks the beginning of the final week of Christ’s life, but what is the significance of this scene where Jesus rides into the holy city on a donkey to the waving of palm branches and the praises of a large crowd? Furthermore, what might our Gospel lectionary reading (Luke 19:28-40) encourage us to cultivate and let go? I look forward to sharing that with you.
Again, I want invite you to enter into this special liturgical season in the life of the church. I have found that intentionally placing your thoughts on Christ and experiencing the events of Holy Week through Scripture, prayer, Jesus films, Christian art, etc., and by attending our Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter services, puts us in a better position to receive a blessing from above. The more we give to this week and see it as holy, the more we will receive from it. So, let’s enter in and allow the Spirit to deepen our love for Christ and shape our hearts and minds for the sake of the good news.
Finally, I want to remind you to be sure to visit the sign-up station for our Season of Service at Grantham Church. I’m excited that we’re stretching our annual service day over multiple weekends this year, which begins on April 27. This gives us several chances to serve and meet needs in our church and in our community. If you’ve not done so already, please sign up at the Season of Service table in the church lobby this Sunday. Let’s make sure that our presence is felt all around us through our active service to our neighbors.
Until we’re all together again, may the Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you his peace.
Grace & Peace,
P.S. Please see the special announcement in the Body Life below about summer missions trips. Note that this is the last week to sign-up for donations to help supply our missionaries who will be serving this summer. There is a particular need for Sally A. Young as she prepares to serve with Veritas in Sighisoara, Romania.
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