Thursday, March 24, 2016

Easter and the hope of the world

Yikes! Easter is approaching so fast this year I didn't have time to do much of anything in preparing.  
My children are grown so I didn't have to make Easter baskets or go on Easter egg hunts or buy Easter dresses.  I may send this little post to some loved ones and hope it will bless them.  The cross above was given to me at a conference I went to this last Fall.  There was a basket there at the front with beautiful crosses made from olive wood.  Every cross was different but all were made from the same type of wood.  Some were deeply grained and marked with knots and some were bright.  I found mine quickly and sat down and watched everyone pick up their crosses.  All picked up their crosses with both joy and sorrow.  The different ways people responded to their crosses was so touching to me and I will carry that with me always!
 Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me~Luke 9;23
Jesus came to a broken and hurting world, much like the world were living in right now.  Fighting and violence was prevalent in those days, like it is today.  Some of the conflicts are even the same as they were centuries ago.  Jesus came, suffered and died for us on the cross and rose again.  So in three days the most tragic day turned into the most joyful day.  He is the hope of the world because he conquered the grave for us.

The Parable of the Lost Sheep

 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus.  But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
  Then Jesus told them this parable:  “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?  And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says,
 ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’~ Luke 15;1-6
Happy Easter!
Praise awaits you, our God, in Zion;
    to you our vows will be fulfilled.
 You who answer prayer,
    to you all people will come.
 When we were overwhelmed by sins,
    you forgave our transgressions.
 Blessed are those you choose
   and bring near to live in your courts!
We are filled with the good things of your house,
    of your holy temple.

 You answer us with awesome and righteous deeds,
    God our Savior,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
    and of the farthest seas,
 who formed the mountains by your power,
    having armed yourself with strength,
 who stilled the roaring of the seas,
    the roaring of their waves,
    and the turmoil of the nations.
 The whole earth is filled with awe at your wonders;
    where morning dawns, where evening fades,
    you call forth songs of joy.
~Psalm 65;1-8