Saturday, April 23, 2011

Holy Saturday

While researching something else a while I back I came upon this.   As we prepare for Easter Sunday tomorrow take a look at this and use today to find time for "teaching moments" with your family and friends.

Holy Saturday (in Latin, Sabbatum Sanctum), the 'day of the entombed Christ', is the Lord's day of rest, for on that day Christ's body lay in His tomb. We recall the Apostle's Creed, which says "He descended unto the dead." It is a day of suspense between two worlds, that of darkness, sin and death, and that of the Resurrection and the restoration of the Light of the World. For this reason no divine services are held until the Easter Vigil begins that night. This day between Good Friday and Easter Day makes present to us the end of one world and the complete newness of the era of salvation inaugurated by the Resurrection of Christ.

Ideally, Holy Saturday should be the quietest day of the year (although this is not as easy in a busy household with children as it might be in a convent or monastery.) Nightfall on Holy Saturday is time for joy and greatest expectation because of the beautiful liturgy of the Easter Vigil, often referred to as the Mother of all Holy Vigils, or the Great Service of Light. The Easter Vigil was restored to the liturgy in 1955, during the liturgical reform that preceded the Second Vatican Council.

During the day, the preparations at home that must be made for Easter Day are appropriate, however, because they keep our attention fixed on the holiness and importance of the most central feast of the Church. Working with our children to prepare for Easter can offer us many 'teaching moments', as well.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Six Hours One Friday

"In Six Hours One Friday, Max Lucado delves into the meaning of Jesus’ last hours on the cross. Through his death, your life has purpose and meaning. You are forgiven and loved by a Savior who died for you. And an empty tomb proclaims that death does not have the final word."

Ten years ago I got this book and it changed my view of what happened almost 2,000 years ago.  For the longest time I only looked at Good Friday and Easter Sunday as scripture.  But Max made this come alive to me.  This book opened my eyes to what really happened on that Friday.  I had grown up in church and heard the scripture read at church and in youth group.  But it never really came alive until I read this book.  

Then in 2004 I had the chance to go with my Senior Pastor to Willow Creek to see a preview of the Passion of the Christ the movie before it was released.   To see scripture come alive like I never had before really blew my mind.   But the more amazing part was to be with pastors and youth pastors from all over the country and watch it together.  I can still remember the faces of everyone as they left.  I can remember hearing pastors cry and gasp at what they saw.  For many of us it finally came alive.

Since 2004, every year on Good Friday I take time by myself and with my wife to watch the Passion.  For me it is a time to remember.  To remember what Jesus went through for me...and for you!   Its hard to watch everything that Jesus went through, knowing that was for me....let alone for everyone.  Every lash, bash, and nail hurt as I see and hear it.   It opens my eyes to how big a cost that just paid on that Friday.  Too many days in my life I have taken that with a grain of salt.  Over the last couple years I try to remember everyday what Jesus did for us on that one Friday.  Those events changed the world forever.

If you have not read Six Hours One Friday. I challenge you to take the time to read it.

On the Way to the Cross

Last night at our Lock-In, we showed this video from the Skit Guys and I wanted to share it with you on this Friday.

Will you make it personal?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Old School Youth Ministry Video...Summer 2004..Punk'd

I was going through my youtube channel the other day and found this classic video we made in the summer of 2004.

I'm starting to work on several videos like this again.  I used to do these videos all the time for my different youth groups...So be on the lookout and subscribe to my blog and youtube channel

Monday, April 18, 2011

If you don't speak...then the message is never heard

A while back a friend of mine asked me why I had stopped blogging.  I told him that I was busy and just didn't make the time for it.  He then responded that he enjoyed reading my blogs and that he saw that every time I posted that people always commented or liked on facebook.  He told me that if I kept my ideas and my thoughts to myself, that I was doing an injustice to others.  I laughed it off.  But then really thought about it.

Today I'm looking at it in a different light.  There are many of my high school and college friends that aren't in church and some don't even believe.  I see my blog posts and my status updates as a chance to be a witness to them.  I have had several of those friends over the last year tell me that these have helped them see God in a new a way and now are involved in church and some are even helping out in children's and youth ministry.

Its the same thing in real life...If we don't speak about God in our daily lives outside the church, then the message is never heard.  I once heard that the quote, "You might be the only Bible anyone ever reads or hears". And also, "Preach the gospel always, If necessary use words." ~ St. Francis of Assisi. 

So how will you speak today?

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Palm Sunday

Over the years, Palm Sunday leading up to Holy Week has always hit home.  I always look at how it is so similar to our lives.   We are just like those who were there laying down the palms and celebrating Christ.   And then later in the week, we fall asleep, deny God, deny him again, and again.   But then on the next Sunday we are Celebrating Him rising from the grave.  

But at some point we have to be like the disciples, days and weeks after this and go into the world.   We have to stop doubting and see that what God has done and is doing.  We must take his message into the world.  I have been reading a lot lately and have been looking at the first church in Acts.  We need to move past the Holy Week denials and get excited about our God.  We need to tell everyone about Him. 

Who is someone in your life this week that you can invite to church on Easter and then follow-up with them the week after Easter...and the week after that.   

I'm part of the Jesus Movement!  Are you?