Happy Wednesday, Faith! I hope you have an opportunity to get outside today. A little foretaste of warmer weather to come!
I'm going to skip the strategic plan update for this week, because things are a little busy with all of the holy week activities. I'll pick it back up next week. Remember to attend and invite others to our holy week services.
Death is swallowed up in victory.
1 Corinthians 15.54
This Sunday we will focus on the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, our great hope even when all other hopes are gone. I don’t know about you, but I can be a worst-case scenario kind of guy. I can use worst case scenarios to help give me confidence when making a hard decision. But I can also get locked into worst case scenario thinking, which then creates anxiety and worry. When this happens, it is hard to imagine grace and a way out.
But the resurrection of Jesus doesn't just give confidence to us as we face our death beds. The resurrection of Jesus can functionally help us, when we get caught in anxiety and despair, because we are trapped in our worst-case scenarios. How? We apply the gospel of Jesus' resurrection to our circumstances and fears. What does that look like?
It can look like this. When I am anxious about getting a disease that could take away my livelihood, and slowly cause me increasing pain and disability (like Huntington's Chorea, which is what took my mom's life), I need to look beyond the disease to the resurrection. With the resurrection of Jesus, my worst case is not disability and death, it is a restored and fully healed body, a body that will never experience decay again. Because of the resurrection of Jesus, I have a hope that no disease can touch. This hope gives me strength and confidence in the bleakest of times. It is at this point, when I have a choice to make. Will I rest my hopes on my worst-case scenario of a disease or on the worst-case scenario (if we can call it that) of my resurrection from the dead? A resurrection Jesus secured for me by his death and resurrection.
This same gospel truth can be applied to a myriad of fears and worst-case scenarios. Our greatest enemy has been swallowed up in victory. May we live more hope-filled lives, because our greatest hope cannot be taken away. Hope swallows up fear and despair.
This Sunday will be all about the gospel and the power and beauty of the resurrection of Jesus. From 1 Corinthians 15.42-57, we will learn from Paul, who was an eye-witness of Jesus' resurrection body, what the resurrection will be like for us. Though we are perishable, one day we will be imperishable—we will be glorified with Jesus. One day we will have bodies like his, because one day we will experience what he experienced, the resurrection of the dead!
This will be a great service to invite people to—we'll focus with great joy on the absolute essentials for belonging to Jesus. Come ready to worship together, to welcome others, and sing of our Lord who conquered the grave!
Maundy Thursday with communion, March 29, 7 p.m. Childcare will be available for children through age 5.
About Maundy Thursday
If you are new to FCC, maybe you have never heard of a "Maundy Thursday" service. Maybe you’re wondering, "what’s this all about?" The word Maundy is a loan word from Latin, and it means “mandate or command.” The "mandate" that we celebrate on Maundy Thursday is Jesus’ command to wash one another’s feet. Jesus gave this command to his first disciples at the last supper. So, this Maundy Thursday service is a night we set aside to remember Jesus’ humility in serving the disciples by washing their feet and giving us an example to follow in serving one another. In this service, we focus on Jesus’ death in our place. We remember acutely his sacrifice for us, so we are fueled by his love for us, so we can love one another.
Good Friday, March 30, 7 p.m. A viewing of “The Passion of Christ” movie followed by communion. No childcare.
Easter Services – Sunday, April 1, at 9 & 11 a.m. Print invitation cards are available to give to your friends and neighbors, or share this page from our web site through text, email or social media. Pray for who you will invite to Easter services this year. (LifeShaping classes will not take place on Easter Sunday. The nurseries will be available for children through age 5.)
Would you consider a couple of hospitality requests for the Easter services? We tend to have a large attendance at the 9 am service, so if you are able, could you please consider attending at the 11 am service? And, also if you are able, could you please park in the lower lot or away from the main door so that our guests will have parking spots closer to the door? Thank you, Faith Community, for considering these two ways to extend kindness to those attending our Easter services this year!
FCC DIRECTORY – SIGN UP FOR A PHOTO SESSION!
Be a part of our new FCC family directory–we need YOU to make it complete! Each individual or family photographed will receive a complimentary 8x10 photograph and free directory for participating. Find more information and sign up online for a photo session today at this link.
BAPTISMS – SUNDAY, APRIL 8 – SIGN UP BY APRIL 2!
Baptism is an act commanded by the Lord Jesus Christ as an expression of faith and a symbol of our union with Christ, especially in his death and resurrection. We are planning for baptisms in the services on Sunday, April 8. Pick up a “Believer’s Baptism” brochure at the Info Center for more info or contact Becki at bhedstrom@fcchudson or 715.386.4070 by MONDAY, APRIL 2, if you are interested in being baptized.
LEARN ABOUT more FCC events and registrations at fcchudson.com.