Good Morning and Blessed Holy Week from Living Word Lutheran Church,
It is- Holy Week!
No matter what is happening in the world; this week of remembrance and reflection of the life of our Lord and Savior is eternal. It is easy to get distracted by the worries of this place we call home but Holy Week will never end. See I believe we will worship Jesus in Heaven in this same type of remembrance for His return to His Father’s side. How can we not honor and praise Him for coming to us. Leaving His place in Heaven to come and lead us to our place with Him!
That is the key point in His return, Jesus never came back to force us to believe, He came back and like a shepherd does his sheep, he came to lead us to greener pastures. The unfortunate part is like any shepherd knows there will be sheep that “Just won’t listen” they get an idea in their heads and you can’t seem to stop them. But that is part of life. We as the good sheep will follow our shepherd’s voice and through any peril will end up in a good place.
As I wrote that last line I couldn’t help but think back in my life when I was younger, on how many times I heard the statement “ Oh yes, follow like a good little sheep, follow the crowd and be one of them”. It was meant to be an insult, a way the “wild” kids would make you feel like you were doing the wrong thing. A way to make you believe the right way was the wrong way. Do any of you remember that? And the worst part for a young boy was; to feel tough or like an outlaw, you would leave the safety of the group and end up in a terrible place, in trouble, and paying the price for your deliberate actions of doing what you knew was wrong. Sin is active at a very young age in our lives, that is why it is so important to teach our youth at a very young age which shepherd to follow.
That is what this week is about. To remember, to tell the story, to teach our youth about Jesus Christ. Again as I look back, even as I was doing those things I knew better than doing, my parents never quit taking us to church, they never quit showing us the Bible, never quit making us watch “The Ten Commandments” on TV as a family. I truly believe now as I grow-up that movies like that were a real God send. First off it was made so Biblically accurate for their abilities, second is the fact the movie was made and has lasted this many decades. Third it was a way to see and hear the Bible come to life and see the faith and the lack of faith of our ancestors. I truly believe it strengthened many people’s knowledge of God.
The trials that have come to pass these last couple years during Holy Week have been major. With the floods of 2019 and now the Covid of 2020 it would seem that God has taken His blessings from our world. But when we look back at the Bible stories, the only times when God left the world be conquered and left in distress is when the world left Him. When we decide we don’t need a Shepherd and that we are in control, and just like those wild sheep that you have to let run, God is watching. He will save those who realize they are lost and want to come home. It makes me think of the movie, when Moses went up the mountain for those 40 days and nights and the people listened to the evil Dathan and made the golden calf. They left their faith in God behind for a human scheme. They left God out of sinful ignorance. But as this was happening there were many that stayed true to God. They were the ones that were allowed to go into the promised land after 40 years in the wilderness. I am not sure if we are in a wilderness or if this is a loss of God’s blessing but I know if we stay true we will be given our reward in the end.
There is a day coming that we will see the power of God right before our eyes. Right now we will celebrate that day through the eyes of our ancestors recorded in the Bible. Sunday is the day we will glorify Jesus for His power over sin and death. It isn’t about a bunny like the world would lead us to believe, it isn’t about eggs which was a pagan ritual that early Christians tried to adapt into a Biblical theme. The day is about an empty tomb and our way to eternal life. Our young people need to know this truth or they will be the lost in the wilderness when the world gets dark. Stay strong in your faith through these difficult times. Keep believing and keep praying, God has not left us He is just watching to see which way we will go.
P.S. I have had several discussions about our drive-in service and I believe through prayer and discernment we will not be doing a outdoor service. With the “stay at home order” by our health officials and our governor, I truly believe to conquer this virus in our world we need to stay apart. It is just one of the sacrifices we have to do to stay ALIVE! I know this will be hard news to hear but I cannot ask our congregation to risk being infected and spreading it to their family members. I can’t imagine having it spread throughout our congregation even with protective measures. The other reasons we are cancelling is; it will be quite cold Sunday morning with a good chance of snow, and last; our license to broadcast over the air is not official yet, there have been many changes to the laws and it is a jungle to be assured we won’t be in violation. I am sorry to give this news but like a good sheep-dog I must nip at heals at times to keep the flock following our Shepherd; Jesus Christ.
In Service to Him