As I think about what I might say to you in this article, Psalm 97:10 keeps coming to me. It simply, but powerfully, says, “You who love the Lord, hate evil.” What we have in this world today is too much hatred and not enough love. As Jackie DeShannon sings, “What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It’s the one thing we have too little of.”
I believe in the power of God, as I am sure you do, but I also believe in the power of evil. But love always conquers evil. It is the antidote for evil.
You cannot open the morning paper or turn on the television without reading of shootings, high speed chases, child abuse, and a host of other things. It is easy to blame it on gangs, which does play a part, but mostly it is just plain evil. What can I, or we do, you might ask. First and foremost, we have to love the unlovable, we have to shine a light in the darkness. We have to let people know that God cares for them and so do we. Show love to those whom love is a stranger. AND PRAY WITHOUT CEASING. God is great.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE TRAINING
Soon we will be offering a training class for those interested in being part of an Emergency Response Team through the United Church. Teams are called to a variety of emergencies from floods to fires, and others. Be watching for more.
Lay Servant Training April 27
Currently both Nestor Perez and Johnnie Jones have been through some of the courses offered for Lay Persons. The church needs your gifts and graces. If you are interested the classes being offered are: The Basic Course, Leading Bible Studies and Leading Worship. You must have the basic course first. Training will be held at St. Luke’s in Lincoln.
Walking the Walk
Now that the weather is getting warmer, Pastor Ray is inviting you to be part of “Walking the Walk,” which means we will be visiting every home within several blocks of the church. Pastor has written a letter about the church which will be given to each home. It talks about our ministries and more. If nobody is home we will leave the letter in each door. If interested please talk to Ray.
We are pleased and excited to welcome Judy Reiber to Lakeview Church. Judy was received March 25th.
As we continue our journey of Lent andHoly Week it’s important to rememberwho, what, when and why. Perhaps that’sthe old journalist in me, but it is true.
Of course, when we ask WHO, we automatically think Jesus. Of course it is all about him. But the who is also you. We know the journey He took on the ViaDolorosa which is simply translated “The Painful Way.” From His very birth he wasdestined to rejection, hatred and suffering. We have to remember WHAT he did for you and I and a world of people, many of whom reject Him. The world rejected Him, but he never rejected us.
In fact, He has called us his brothers andsisters….children of God. The WHEN isdifficult to put in a few words. The when, however, is His entire ministry. The when is the wilderness experience. The betrayal of those closest to him. The WHEN is ultimately his beating, his suffering on the cross and the resurrection, the WHY is simply that he loves us and thinks we are still to die for. The WHY is also to show us that this life is basic training and there is a new life awaiting us. All we have tosay is “Yes Lord.” The WHO is also you and I.
Lakeview’s worship services are now live! You can view the service each Sunday by visiting the website, and clicking the “Lakeview Live” link in the top-right corner.
If you are unable to watch it live, but still wish to watch the service, click the “Worship Services” link to see an archive of prior recordings.
We are very excited to offer this new form of worship.
Come and worship on this Holy night, 7 p.m., April 18. The night on which our Lord was betrayed by one of his own. We remember that when he prayed at the Rock of Agony, the sweat that fell from his brow was like great drops of blood.
We will share in the gift of Holy Communion which, for us, has become His body and His blood. This is a very somber service. It’s a timeto confess our sins to God as we remember that we are a forgiven and reconciled people.
Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter is a time to celebrate what Jesus is about to do for us. He rode into the Holy City of Jerusalem on the back of a donkey. He entered the Temple Courts, chased out thethieves and the Money Changers. He knew what would happen to him by doing this. But he was willing to make that sacrifice for each of us. Because of this our bodies have become a temple, healed, cleansed and forgiven. We will join in the traditional procession of palms fronds. Come and celebrate.
Lent is a season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. The forty days represents the time Jesus spent in the wilderness, enduring the temptation of Satan and preparing to begin his ministry. Lent is a time of repentance, fasting and preparation for the coming of Easter. It is a time of self-examination and reflection. In the early church, Lent was a time prepare new converts for baptism. Today, Christians focus on their relationship with God. Sunday’s arenot counted because they represent a mini-Easter.
Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent and is often marked as a day of fasting. Lent is also a time of spiritual discipline, moderation and repentance. Ashes are applied to the forehead as a reminder. This service is somber and reflective.
Service will be at 7PM, March 6th.
As I sit down to write this article, I can see the snow cover out of my window. Many of us, including myself, have grumbled about all the snow. I certainly did my share of grumbling when we had to cancel our worship service, February 24. I also grumbled when I would go outside into the frigid temperatures. I could think of a dozen things I wanted to do (all out- of-doors) that just had to be put on the back burner. Oh, how I loved snow when I was still in school. The more the better was my motto.
And, while I am ready for spring, I do admit that the snow is beautiful. Our neighbor children love to play in it and slide down a small hill by the bike path. The other thing that snow does is cover up all the dirt and filth.
Snow reminds me of God’s love and how he blankets us with spiritual snow, covering up our sins. God’s snow reminds us of the blood of God’s Son, Jesus Christ. In 1st Peter 4:8, the Disciple says, “”Love covers a multitude of sins.” The only love that can cover sin in that sense, is the love of Jesus Christ. His love led him to the cross, where he shed his blood that sins repented of might be blotted out and never to be remembered again. As you may know, my favorite song of all time is “It is No Secret.” It truly is no secret what God can do.
God’s love, God’s forgiveness, God’s mercy is the reason we have Lent. It’s a time to examine ourselves. It’s a time of repentance, maybe make things right with someone we have held a grudge against. Look what we did to God’s Son, and he still forgave us from that and all our sins. The 40 days of Lent reminds us of the 40 day’s he spent in the wilderness. You and I have had our wilderness experiences. Yet God will lead us thought those times and blanket us with His spiritual snow which covers all our sins, doubts and fears. He say’s “Do not fear, for I am with thee.”