All posts by john

Palm Sunday/Passion Sunday – This week at ELC

PalmFor this week’s worship we gather for a retelling of the story of Holy Week, using music, readings, and participation of everyone.

Worship this week:  Saturday at 5:00 p.m. – Sharing of the Palm Sunday/Passion Story

Sunday – 8:30 a.m.  “Cry of the Whole Congregation”

9:30 a.m. – Sunday School and Fellowship

10:30 a.m. “Cry of the Whole Congregation”

Devotions for this week:  

Palm Sunday – Matthew 21:1-17

Pray: Light a candle. Open your devotion with prayer.

Holy Jesus, you came to Jerusalem seeking not empty worship but faithfulness to your commandments. Guide us now as we begin this week of contemplation and keep us close to your side as we retrace the steps of your final earthly journey. In your name, we pray. Amen.

Read: Read the key verses from Sunday’s reading.
Then Jesus entered the temple and drove out all who were selling and buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer’; but you are making it a den of robbers.” (Matthew 21:12-13)

Go Deeper: Go to clergystuff.com/daily-devotions for devotions on the daily readings.

Monday, Psalm 118:26-29, Psalm

Tuesday, Matthew 26:31-75, Betrayal of Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 27:1-26, Passion

Thursday, Matthew 26:17-30, Words of Institution

Friday, Matthew 27:27-61, Crucifixion

Saturday, Matthew 27:62-66, The Guard at the Tomb

Reflect: Reflect on the scripture summary.

Jesus’ final visit to Jerusalem is not to be missed. Arriving in spontaneous fanfare and then confronting the temple merchants over their exploitation of others. The week of reckoning has only begun.

Connect: Connect in conversation with others in your household.

What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?

Where do you see the presence of a dying Jesus in the world today? Where do you see the presence of a resurrected Jesus?

What are you most afraid of? How can Jesus’ presence in your life help you overcome your fear?

For the littles: Jesus had a grand parade in Jerusalem. Describe the parade you would host if Jesus rode into your town.


Do: By acting on what we learn, we make God’s word come alive. Do the following activity this week.

Attend Holy Week worship services this week. Write down one thing you get from each service. Carry it with you and reflect on it throughout the weekend.Bless: Close your devotion with a blessing.

May God dance in your parade. Amen.

When did we see you? This week at ELC

Last Judgement

Jesus’ story challenges us to see his face in those around us, especially those in need, and then to act with mercy and compassion.

Worship this week with Holy Communion:

Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday -8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 a.m. Sunday School

10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for this week:  Last Judgment, Matthew 25:31-46 — April 7, 2019

SHARE:   What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?

READ: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding

Monday, Psalm 98:7-9, Psalm

Tuesday, Matthew 24:29-51, Teachings of Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 25:14-30, Parables of Jesus

Thursday, Matthew 26:1-5, The Plot to Kill Jesus

Friday, Matthew 26:6-13, The Anointing at Bethany

Saturday, Matthew 26:14-16, Judas Agrees to Betray Jesus

Go to clergystuff.com/daily-devotions for devotions on the daily readings.

TALK:  Consider some of these ideas

 “And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’” (Matthew 25:40)

  • How would Jesus be received if he walked on the earth today?
  • In what ways have you betrayed Jesus? How could you make a change so that Jesus is first in your life?
  • For the littles: Would you rather feed a hungry person or visit someone who’s sick? Why? Jesus loves when we do either one, or both!

PRAY:  O Lord, you long for your people to care for one another with the same compassion you show to them. Move our hearts in love wherever we encounter need and make us more like you with each day. We pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

BLESS:  May God bring out the best in you. Amen.

Parable of the Bridesmaids – This week at ELC

Lamp

Jesus continues showing his illustrations of God’s kingdom. This time, it’s foolish vs. wise bridesmaids. Will you be prepared when the critical moment arrives, or will you let it slip away?

Worship this week:  Saturday at 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday at 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 a.m. Sunday School

10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for this week:  Parable of the Bridesmaids

 

SHARE: What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?

READ: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding

Monday, Psalm 43:3-4, Psalm

Tuesday, Matthew 22:15-33, Questions for Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 22:34-46, The Greatest Commandment

Thursday, Matthew 23:1-36, Woes

Friday, Matthew 23:37-39, Lament over Jerusalem

Saturday, Matthew 24:1-28, Teachings of Jesus

 (Go to clergystuff.com/daily-devotions for devotions on the daily readings.)

 TALK:  “Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.   ”                             (Matthew 25:13)

Jesus continues showing his illustrations of God’s kingdom. Will we be watchful to use the time allotted to us faithfully?

  • Do people live as if Jesus might return any day? How might your community look different if people behaved as if Jesus was on his way?
  • What is one thing you can change about your routine or behaviors so that you are behaving as if Jesus was going to return at any moment?
  • For the littles: Is waiting easy or hard? Why? Jesus can give us patience as we wait.

PRAY: O Lord, you bid us stay alert and active in the work of your kingdom. Keep us focused on things which matter, awaiting your return with eagerness and longing. Through Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

 BLESS: May God grant you patience. Amen.

 

Joining the party? — this week at ELC

Wedding banquet

 

Jesus tells of a banquet to which many are invited, but some are too preoccupied.  We will be ready to respond, or are we too distracted by other things?

Worship this week:  Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 a.m. Sunday School

10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for this week:  THE WEDDING BANQUET

SHARE: What was a high point of your day? What was a low point?

READ: Read the following daily readings to deepen your understanding

Monday, Psalm 45:6-7, Psalm

Tuesday, Matthew 20:17-34, Works of Jesus

Wednesday, Matthew 21:18-22, The Fig Tree

Thursday, Matthew 21:23-27, The Authority of Jesus Questioned

Friday, Matthew 21:28-32, Parables of Jesus

Saturday, Matthew 21:33-46, Parables of Jesus

 (Go to clergystuff.com/daily-devotions for devotions on the daily readings.)

TALK: “The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go

           therefore into the main streets, and invite everyone you find to the

           wedding banquet.” (Matthew 22:8b-9)

Jesus seems bent on stirring up his listeners with each subversive parable. When God invites you to a banquet, there is only one response, and only one dress code: celebration!

  • Who are the insiders and who are the outsiders in your community? What happens when the lines get blurred? Who benefits when insiders and outsiders begin to work together? Who is hurt?
  • How is Jesus’ parable of the wedding banquet good news for you? How is it bad news? Which do you prefer to see
  • For the littles: Describe your best going-to-a-banquet (party) outfit. You are invited to God’s forever celebration!

PRAY: Lord of hosts, you constantly expand the boundaries of your kingdom. Make us joyful participants in your plan to redeem the world, that all people would be one in you. For the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.

BLESS: May God clothe you well for God’s eternal banquet. Amen.