PASTOR GLEN'S BLOG
March 21, 2018
A large crowd was in Jerusalem for Passover. When they heard that Jesus was coming for the festival, they took palm branches and went out to greet him. They shouted “Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!” Jesus found a donkey and rode on it, just as the Scriptures say, “Fear not, daughter of Zion; behold, your king is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt” (John 12:15, quoted from Zechariah 9:9). At first, Jesus’ disciples did not understand. But after he had been glorified, they remembered that these things had been written of him and had been done to him. Everything had happened exactly as the Scriptures said it would.
On that first “Palm Sunday,” there were a variety of people who went out to meet Jesus.
First, there were those who were curious. They thought of Jesus along much the same lines as the circus or a magic show. Their minds were permeated with a wonder about what amazing thing Jesus would do next. They were not necessarily looking for truth. Many people came out to meet Jesus because, as we read in John 12:18, they heard that he had done this sign (raising Lazarus from the dead), and so they came out to meet him.” These people wanted to encounter Jesus as someone who had performed great signs and miracles.
Secondly, Jesus’ disciples were also on the road to Jerusalem that day. But, even as close as the disciples were to Jesus, as much as they had traveled with him, learned from him, witnessed the miracles, still they did not understand what was going on as they witnessed Jesus’ triumphal entry. They could not comprehend that this was a fulfillment of prophecy, as we read in Zechariah 9:9. They didn’t see the symbolism of the colt instead of a stallion or a war-horse. They missed the connection between the humility and the man. It was not yet their time to understand that this glorification was a kind of model of his glorification in heaven. There is so very much going on here and all they could see was a parade. They were simply going out to encounter a parade. As we read in John 12:16, [They] “did not understand these things at first, but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things that had been written about him and had been done to him.”
There were others in the crowd that day – there were Gentiles who had come to worship at the festival, as we read about in John 12:20. These Greeks were probably God-fearers who attended Jewish synagogues and feasts. Their coming was symbolic of the coming of Gentiles to worship God through Jesus Christ.
These Greeks may have come to genuinely meet the Lord. One of the phrases in John 12:13 is the great crowd took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him. The basic understanding of the verb to meet is “to encounter.”
Our goal as Christians ought to be to encounter the living Lord, Jesus. As Richard Foster suggests in his book, Celebration of Discipline, “worship is something that happens. It is experience. Worship must have priority in our lives.” Foster goes on: Worship is the greatest thing that human beings can do. It ushers us into the holy of holies, where we are enabled to see the Lord – where we are able to genuinely encounter the Lord – high and lifted up.”
It is my prayer that we will genuinely encounter the Lord during this coming Holy Week – and beyond!
Cru at WVU
Ramsey and Heather Persing continue to serve with Cru on the WVU campus. Ramsey sends praise reports for God leading Elijah and him to meet a student named TJ who expressed a sense of loneliness during his first year at college and now for his involvement in Cru. He is also thankful for the 50 people (staff included) going to Panama City Beach for the Spring Break trip. This is the most they've sent in a long time for this exciting trip with outreach opportunities! Please continue to pray for Ramsey and the Cru team, for his family and for those on the trip to Florida, that they would grow in their walks with the Lord and ability to communicate their faith.
THIS SUNDAY- "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" Mark 11:9. This Sunday is Palm Sunday! Pastor Glen will continue the sermon series, on Hosea, the story of God’s amazing love! His sermon this Sunday is: “Another Vine,” based on Hosea 10:1-15. Please read the text before worship. We also encourage you to attend the Holy Week services next week! Details are listed below.
Congregational Announcement - Beginning on April 8th we will take a break from our study of Hosea to explore the ways in which the Spirit of God leads us. We will be spending time in concerted prayer as a congregation leading up to Pentecost, and Pastor Glen will be preaching on this topic. We will be focusing specifically about our next steps as a congregation and the potential purchase of property to build a ministry site. Please keep these matters in prayer, even as we look forward to coming coram Deo, before the face of God!!
Children's Ministry Change - We now have an elementary class during the Sunday morning sermon in addition to our current nursery. This provides for meaningful discipleship and special lessons for our elementary children during this time. If you are willing to teach this class once a month, please contact Kelly King at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Adult Sunday School Class - This Sunday, we will continue our study of the minor prophet, Zephaniah, continuing in chapter 2. We meet in the chapel on the Sunday School floor, after the worship service at 10:45am. Join us!
Women's Ministry - A new Bible study called Breathing Room by Sandra Stanley will begin on April 3rd, meeting every Tuesday from 6:30-7:45pm (NOTE UPDATED TIME) in the Fellowship Hall where we have our Sunday service. Books are $12. Please contact Marty Porter at email@example.com or (540) 471-2619 with questions or to sign up! If you would be interested in attending but would require childcare, please let Marty know ASAP so that can be arranged. Here is a video link for more information on this study: https://vimeo.com/231724770
Easter Party & Egg Hunt - The outreach team is planning an Easter party & egg hunt at the home of Cindy and Larry Roberts on Saturday, March 31 at 11am. There will be lunch, music, games, and an Easter egg hunt so invite friends and family! The congregation is asked to help by bringing empty eggs and small treats in bulk (wrapped candy, goldfish, tiny bubble jars, etc) to the church by Sunday, March 25. We will then fill eggs so that we can separate them for different age groups. Please also RSVP to Cindy by this Sunday, March 25.
RESURRECTION SUNDAY - In addition to our special services with several area churches, during Holy Week, we will still have our regular morning worship service on Resurrection Sunday at 9:30am at Hope Community Church. There will be no Sunday School classes on that day.
HOLY WEEK 2018
This year we will be joining with four other churches in our community to celebrate Holy Week – Shiloh Baptist Church; Union Baptist Church; Living Word Worship Center; and Pleasant View United Methodist Church. We encourage you to attend as many services as possible.
Tuesday, March 27th (7:00 p.m. Prayer Service; and 7:30 p.m. Worship Service) – Hope Community Church, host; Rev. Mark McCoy, preaching
Wednesday, March 28th (7:00 p.m. Prayer Service; and 7:30 p.m. Worship Service) – Shiloh Baptist Church, host; Rev. Otis Spellman, preaching
Thursday, March 29th (7:00 p.m. Prayer Service; and 7:30 p.m. Worship Service) – Union Baptist Church, host; Rev. Warne Dawkins, preaching
Friday, March 30th (7:00 p.m. Prayer Service; and 7:30 p.m. Worship Service) – Living Word Worship Center, host at Shiloh (as their building is not ready); Rev. Eric Strother, preaching
Sunday, April 1st (6:00 a.m. – Sunrise Service, followed by breakfast) – Pleasant View United Methodist Church, host; Rev. Glen Holman, preaching
PRAYER CONCERNS & PRAISE REPORTS
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.” - Colossians 4:2
Wink Brown- Wink's surgery went very well and she is recovering at UVA Medical Center. Please keep Wink and her family in your prayers for ongoing healing!
Helen Wilson - Please keep Helen in your prayers as she is scheduled for a heart ablation procedure at UVA on March 29. Please pray that all will go as planned so there won't be a long recovery period.
George Wilson – George is now recovering at Moore Rehabilitation Center at the Woodland in Farmville, Va. Please keep him in your prayers. Cards and Notes are appreciated: 2003 Cobb Street, Farmville, VA 23901
Paul Childers– Please keep Paul in your prayers. His hemoglobin numbers are moving in a positive direction and he is scheduled to have blood drawn again April 2. Hopefully his hip surgery will be able to be scheduled at that point!
Rose Parler – Rose would like prayer for her autoimmune disease to be in remission or in control so she can have a needed surgery on her hip. Please also pray for finances now that it is a new year with deductibles to be met.
Beverly Sayre (Cindy Roberts' mother) - Please keep Beverly in your prayers as she is dealing with some health concerns and awaiting a cardiologist appointment in April.
Jeff Goldberg Family (Tiffany Sever's uncle) - Please keep Jeff's wife Teri and children, Megan and Aaron in your prayers after Jeff's passing recently.
Pammie (Melissa Bare's sister) - Pammie is recovering well from her surgery but please continue to pray for several health issues concerning her liver. She is still in quite a bit of pain and unable to work.
Jay & Dede Hamilton – Praises for the successful procedure done for Jay Hamilton last week for his cochlear implant. Please continue to pray for Jay.
Ruth Graham - Please keep Ruth and her family in your prayers after the loss of her father, Rev. Dr. Billy Graham, on Wednesday, February 21.
Don Acker (brother of Debby Ray) – Please continue to pray for Don as he is home recovering from transplant surgery. Debby reports that he is doing well and our prayers are felt and much appreciated.
Jason & Marcella Bennett (son and daughter in-law of John & Judy Bennett) - Please cover them in prayer regarding health concerns.
PEOPLE WHO ARE UNCHURCHED in our community; there are people all around us who need the Lord! Pray that we will truly be salt and light in Waynesboro and beyond!
HOPE COMMUNITY CHURCH – Please pray for God’s guidance as we discern the possible next location for our church family.
Bridge collapse - Pray for those injured as a result of the bridge collapse in Florida.
School Shooting - Pray for those who died or were injured as a result of the school shooting in Leonardtown Maryland.
US Military - Please pray for protection for our soldiers and our country, as well as discernment for our country's leaders.
Ruth Graham – Please continue to pray for persecuted Christians around the world. Pray also for Ruth in working to raise awareness in the Valley of our persecuted sisters and brothers.
The Rev. Dr. Andrew Brunson – Christians in Turkey request continued prayer for pastor Andrew Brunson following an official indictment demanding life imprisonment. On March 13th, Andrew was charged with being a member of the terrorist group blamed for a coup attempt against the Turkish government. Questioning has been very distressing for Andrew, who denies all allegations. Andrew's case will proceed to trial if the court accepts the indictment.
Please pray that:
a. the Lord will strengthen Andrew, and that he and his family will know God's peace and presence
b. the Turkish court will uphold justice and throw out the wholly unfounded allegations of Andrew's involvement in a terrorist group
c. the Lord will give Andrew's Turkish lawyer wisdom to effectively counter the accusations
d. Andrew will be released soon and that those responsible for his imprisonment will repent of their actions
Other Prayer Requests & Praises:
Cliff Scott - A huge praise and surprise for the incredible work and servant heart of Cliff Scott in coming to our rescue in shoveling our long driveway from this spring snowstorm. What a blessing! With overwhelming gratitude, Beth Laughlin
Barbara (Elaine Caldwell's sister) - Prayers for healing and God's peace as she has been hospitalized.
Howard Lawson family (friend and co-worker of Lena Wright) - Prayers for Howard's family as he passed away last week.
Dan Conyers (friend of Blake & Marty Porter) – Please continue to keep Dan in your prayers. He has just been moved to Avante which is a blessing for his wife Vicky and the Porters who visit regularly. The new care planned for him by specially trained staff is very encouraging. He still has a long road ahead, but there is much to hope for in his recovery.
Glenna Cash – Please keep Glenna in your prayers.
Parker Staples (son of Cindy Roberts’ friend) – Pray for Parker, a 7-year-old diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and his parents, as Parker receives medical care at UVA. Additional prayers for fundraising efforts going on to support the family.
John (Friend of Bill Flournoy) – Pray for John who had his leg amputated recently. Pray for strength in the midst of this huge transition.
Jay Dee Clark- Pray for strength and wellness from a stubborn case of pneumonia.
Corrie Green (friend of Kelly King) – Please pray for Corrie who was diagnosed with breast cancer recently. She has reached the half way mark of her chemo treatments and is doing well. Pray also for continued strength and encouragement for her 8 year old daughter, Marlo and husband, Chris.
Joan Bundy-She sends her thanks for our prayers as she has undergone radiation treatments for breast cancer. Dan Woodworth reported that she is improving in her recovery.
If you would like to add someone to the prayer list or would like to update a prayer concern, please contact Beth Laughlin at 943-0971 or Wink Brown at 540-241-5531.