What a Great Easter Sunday. We had 110 people in worship at Grey Eagle and about the same at Peace United (two services). Thanks to all who helped with the breakfast at both places. When you got up this morning did you remind yourself that Jesus was risen and we arise to new life in Christ each morning. Hallelujah and Praise the Lord!
I will be officiating a funeral for Brigitte Skillings, 57, at the Williams-Dingmann Chapel in Long Prairie this Saturday. Brigitte and her husband David were not members of our churches but I am honored that I was asked to lead the service. Please pray for the Skillings family at this time of need.
Through the Easter Season, which lasts until Pentecost Sunday, May 27, our “Old Testament” lesson will be from the “Acts of the Apostles” (Acts) and our Epistle Reading will be from “1 John”. Our Gospel lesson will come primarily from “The Gospel of John” with one Sunday in “The Gospel of Luke”.
Our lessons this week are:
Acts 4:32-35 – Fundamental Christians, especially those who tend to glorify (and worship) American capitalism, probably don’t like this passage too much. What does it mean to be “one in heart and mind?” What does it mean “to hold everything in common?” Are there people among us who can bring a powerful witness to the resurrection of Jesus? What would our churches look like if no one in our churches had any needs? Is it possible for us to provide for the needs of all within our churches?
Psalm 133 – I like the way the Common English Bible translates the first verse, “Look at how good and pleasing it is when families live together as one.” What would it be like to have expensive oils poured over your head and onto your clothing? (UGH!)
1 John 1:1-2:2 – If you were in church on Easter, you may remember the story I told of the young seminarian who couldn’t write a sermon. The gospel in that story was “those who know tell those who don’t know.” That is basically what John is saying in verses 1-4: we heard and saw and now we are telling you so you can be in fellowship with us and our joy will be fulfilled. The thesis of this letter comes in verse 5. What does John mean when he says that God contains only light and NO darkness? What does it mean to live in the darkness? According to John, why will God clear away our sins? What happens when we do sin? Who will advocate for us?
John 20:19-31 – This is the second and third appearance of Jesus in the Gospel of John. The first was to Mary Magdalene at the tomb. The second was to the 10 disciples without Thomas. The third was to all 11 of the disciples. The last was to the disciple at Lake Galilee. What would it take for you to believe that Jesus was alive? Can you imagine a time where you wouldn’t forgive someone? Is it even possible for a Christian follower of Jesus to not forgive someone? Why does Jesus “breathe on them”? Did Thomas want more proof then the other 10 disciples got"?
May the joy and hope of the Resurrected Jesus fill you up this week.