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Archive for April 1st, 2021

MEDITATION:

Written by Jay Shailer, a contemporary pastor.

The parade is over. The singing and joyous celebrating are now just a memory from Sunday. The palms are all cleaned up, and the city of Jerusalem is quiet. Tonight, we get one last meal with Jesus. But, before the action picks up in Gethsemane tomorrow, we get one last lesson from our Lord. He tells us to love each other. He doesn’t just give it lip service. He gets down on his knees, pours water into a bowl, and washes the disciples’ dusty feet. This is the love he speaks about. Humble, lowly devotion to the ones you love. It’s a love that carries no glamour. It’s a love that gains you nothing other than sideways glances from others, who would never do something that is beneath them. Jesus is showing us that love is costly. But more importantly, it is holy. How we love each other echoes an eternity. It is how we identify ourselves as followers of Christ. It is our calling card for the world.

As we, the church, enter into the great three days of Christ’s death and resurrection, I pray we hear this one last lesson about our identity as citizens of God’s Heavenly Reign. People will know us by how we love each other. People will know. People will see where our hearts and our values are by how we fall to our knees and reach out in service to our neighbor. Our promise in Jesus’ resurrection is firm, and our call and identity are clear. When we get to the other side of the big celebration Sunday morning, and those decorations are cleaned up, and we go back out into the world, I pray that this identity shines brightly and clearly.

PRAYER:

Written by Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109), a Benedictine monk, abbot, philosopher and Christian theologian. He served as the archbishop of Canterbury from 1093-1109.

O blessed Lord, you have commanded us to love one another. Just as we have received your undeserved blessings, may we love everyone in you and for you. We ask your kindness for all, but especially for the friends whom your love has given to us. Love them, O fountain of love, and move them to love you with all their heart, that they may will, and speak, and do only those things which are pleasing to you. Our prayer is cold,  because our love is so feeble, but you are rich in mercy. Do what is best for them, according to your will,  that being ruled and protected by you always and everywhere;  to you, with the Father and the Holy Spirit,  be all honor and praise for ever and ever. Amen.

MUSIC MEDITATION:

God of Mercy and Compassion. Sherrin Sophia. The hymn was written by Edmund Vaughan in the 1700s and traditionally is set to the French tune Au Sang Qu’un Dieu by Giovanni Pergolesi.

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