We’ve made it!

Welcome to Holy Week!  Those of you who have participated in the 20/40 challenge might be feeling a bit tired from the intense focus on daily prayer.  Perhaps you feel bad about missing a day here or there.  Please don’t worry!  We are not accepted based on “trying hard” and “getting things right.”  We are accepted through the gracious saving work of Jesus Christ.  The purpose of the spiritual disciplines is not to “prove” our spirituality, but to train our spiritual muscles to be attentive to God and to the moving of God’s Spirit.  

As we prepare for the Holy Week services here at ECC, I feel a little weary.  But I also feel anticipation.  For in these services, I find permission to rest—to relinquish all of my cares, concerns, and need for control—upon the one who took the cares of the whole world upon himself on that Thursday and Friday night long ago.  Please come and join us and rest with us in these special times of worship.  The rest and reflection of Holy Week will prepare us for the rejoicing and celebration of Easter!

And one last word—please invite someone to worship with you this Easter.  Those who witnessed the empty tomb could not keep it to themselves.  Nor should we!  Let us go and tell the world that our Savior lives!

Maundy Thursday service with holy communion: 7:00 pm

Good Friday Tenebrae service: 7:00 pm

Easter Sunday worship services: 8:30 am and 10:30 pm

Childcare is provided at all of these!

 This 6th and final week of Lent is also Holy Week, when we follow Jesus through a week of suffering and agony, as well as hope and renewal.  In honor of his sacrifice, let us offer 20 minutes of prayer each day to the one who gave up his all for us.  This week’s prayer prompts are below.  Another Lenten devotional is available online here.

Each Day:

Opening Prayer (slowly, pausing as you need along the way):

O Lord, let my soul rise up to meet you as the day rises to meet the sun.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever.  Amen. 

Come, let us bow down and bend the knee: let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.

Reflection and Lament

Many of the psalms for the week call us to reflect on the darker side of life; these are songs and prayers of lament.  They call us to remember the sorrows and suffering of this world, as well as our own sorrows, and to lift up our cries and tears to God.  Spend some time, reflecting on places of grief, loss, and suffering in your life.  Lift these things to God.  Also, take time to pray for those around you who are going through difficulties.

Psalm and Gospel for the Day: (slowly read the Psalm, maybe 2 or 3 times, pausing if there is a word or phrase that stands out to you; then take that word or phrase and turn it into a prayer.  Then read the Gospel lesson.)

Mar. 26 | Psalm 51:1-12 | John 11:17-37

Mar. 27 | Psalm 6:1-10 |  John 11:38-57

Mar. 28 | Psalm 55:1-8 | John 12:1-19

Mar. 29 | Psalm 142:1-7 | John 12:20-36

Mar. 30 | Psalm 141:5-10 | John 12:37-50

Mar. 31 | Psalm 27:1-14 | John 13:1-17