I am excited for this upcoming Holy Week. It is a week of great redemptive potential because the message of the cross and the victory of Christ over sin, death, and Satan is so blatantly clear. Often when I think of the redemptive story, I think of going out “into the world” (i.e. mission work). Sometimes, I’m like Peter and put the cart before the horse. I get so revved up to tell others what Jesus has done for them that I tend to forget that He did it for me too. And I can tell the story of Jesus’ redemptive work much better when I have let it penetrate into the deep crevices of my own sinful heart first.
On the Monday after the first Palm Sunday, Jesus entered the temple courts, flipped over the tables of the money changers, and cleared them out of the Temple. “It is written,” [Jesus] said to them, “‘My house will be a house of prayer’; but you have made it ‘a den of robbers’” (Luke 19:46). The question I have for you and me is: Do we need our Savior to do a spring cleaning in our hearts?
In the busyness of life, even when we engage in good and responsible things, is Jesus being crowded out of our lives? In trying to fit in and not be embarrassed (or worse mocked), is Jesus being muted from our conversations? Is there some indignation that is coloring our opinions of people at school, work, home or on the streets? Are lustful imaginations pushing Jesus out of hearts? Is prayer something we can always do but we really don’t do much of?
Thankfully, Jesus allowed His life to be flipped upside down for us. He paid the price for our sin (which no money could ever do) and was the sacrifice (which no lamb could ever be) so that we might be at one with God eternally.
As we are on the verge of Holy Week, join with me in confessing, “Lord, I Need You” (Matt Maher, et al):
Where sin runs deep Your grace is more
Where grace is found is where You are
And where You are, Lord, I am free
Holiness is Christ in me
Lord, I need You, oh, I need You
Every hour I need You
My one defense, my righteousness
Oh God, how I need You.
God bless your Holy Week preparations.
Sharing Christ’s Victory,
Palm Sunday – This weekend, Seminary Student Paul Koester wraps up our Crazy Love sermon series with a message about how God’s love sees it through to the end.
ICYMI – Click here to view last week’s message. If anyone had reason to feel like He couldn’t forgive, it was Jesus. Jesus, however, freely offers unconditional forgiveness even to the very men who nailed him to the cross. Forgive, God says, as I have forgiven you. Love forgives!
Easter Celebration – Who are you praying about inviting to Victory of the Lamb on Easter Sunday? Watch on Facebook for posts to like and share and a frame to add to your profile pic. This weekend, grab an invite card on your way out of church to use to personally invite a family member or friend. Also, be on the lookout for new faces on Easter Sunday; greet visitors with a smile and help them find their way around church.
Holy Week Services – Victory of the Lamb will offer Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services. Both services will be held at 6:30pm. The Maundy Thursday service will include Communion. Please consider joining us at the worship center to prepare your hearts for Jesus’ resurrection on Easter Sunday.
Call Update – As mentioned in the blog last week, we have called Pastor Eric Hansen from St. Mark (De Pere, WI) to be our Associate Pastor. Please continue to pray for Pastor Eric and his family as he deliberates his calls to St. Mark and Victory of the Lamb. Below is the letter that Pastor Eric sent in acknowledgment of his receipt of the call.
Dear Members of Victory of the Lamb,
On March 15, 2018, I received a phone call from your congregational President informing me that your congregation has extended a divine call to me to serve as your Pastor. I’m excited to learn more about the Lord’s work in your congregation and community as well as consider how I can best serve our Lord for the biggest kingdom benefit.
As my family and I are prayerfully considering God’s callings I would also ask for your prayers of support and guidance in making this important decision. I’d also welcome any phone calls or emails with your insight.
In His Service with You,
Pastor Eric Hansen
Parsonage Work – Volunteers and contractors have been hard at work renovating the parsonage on Plainsview Drive to prepare for a new pastor and his family. THANK YOU to all of you who have scraped wallpaper, patched, painted, and fixed up areas of the home so far. If you are handy in any area of home remodeling and are willing to give a few hours’ work at the parsonage, please click here to let us know of your interest and talents.
WELS Lutherans for Life Fundraiser – Victory of the Lamb has a team of ladies playing in the Women’s 6s Volleyball Tournament at Wisconsin Lutheran College on Sunday, April 15 from 10:00am-5:00pm. The tournament is a fundraiser for WELS Lutherans for Life, an organization that provides pregnancy counseling and other services to women in crisis situations. Please consider supporting this cause by donating here or coming out to WLC to cheer on the ladies in the tournament.
Spring Sacred Choral Concert at WLHS – Wisconsin Lutheran High School will hold their annual Spring Sacred Choral Concert on Saturday, March 24 at 7pm in the auditorium at WLHS. This concert, entitled “This is the Christ,” will include choirs and instrumentalists and will have singing opportunities for all. Free will offering will be collected. Please visit the WLHS Fine Arts website for more information about this concert and other music events at WLHS.