Welcome to Holy Week! The most important week in the life of the Church will look different this year, and there are good and bad things about that. However, Christ is still King, His Church is still active and your pastors are still here to minister to you. That hasn’t changed.
So you’re going to be hearing from us more in a few ways, especially this week. A pastor is more than a preacher from the pulpit on Sundays and is certainly more than a face on a screen. So I’m asking Pastor Ken, Pastor Gage and our new intern, J.C. Pappan, to team up with me to offer daily writings or videos to help guide us through this unique time. We’ll share them through our website, social media and emails. And if we can convince J.C. to develop a carrier pigeon/smoke signals program, we may give that a shot too.
Regardless, here’s where my mind has been this week: Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Easter Bunnies. No, wait. That’s where my stomach has been. Bear with me. It turns out that staying at home and being close to all the food that I own is not a great situation. Pray for me.
THIS is where my mind has been: Christians have been separated many times over the history of the Church. Whether for persecution, distance or some other reason (say, infectious disease), the Church has always adapted and found new ways to share and minister. For Paul, he often couldn’t physically be in the places he wished he could be. Sometimes he was ministering somewhere else. Sometimes he was traveling. Sometimes he was in jail. And video conferencing wasn’t even considered as an option for prisoners in the 1st Century Roman Empire. Savages.
Instead, Paul wrote letters. A lot of them. More than ever, we could benefit from Christians writing letters to each other. Here’s one Paul wrote that gives a great example:
“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ – to the glory and praise of God.” Philippians 1:9-11 (NIV)
While we can’t be physically together this week, we can certainly pray for each other, grow in knowledge and depth of insight and seek discernment and wisdom to decide what is best. There’s no better week to get started, and we’ll be here to help you along. Thanks for your time, and may the Lord bless you, protect you and equip you for these strange times we’re in.
‘til the storm passes by,
Pastor Billy Byler