Dear Fellow Christians,
Grace and peace to you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
I write you in the midst of the holiest week of the church year. Thursday we will gather to observe the things that took place in the upper room the night before Jesus died. Friday we will pray through the gravity and horrible tribulation of the cross. Then we will wait for the third day to come when we will hear news that is above all news, that Jesus Christ has been raised from the dead and because of him we too have been delivered from the ultimate sting of death. This is the point upon which all else pivots.
I can recall the first Holy Week when I was old enough to go to all the services and old enough to pay attention to why they mattered to me. I can remember being terrified at realizing that if I was honest, I was a sinner and I couldn’t help it.
Easter that year was a bit more unbelievable. I can remember the difficulty I had drawing the line between my own life and this thing that happened 2,000 years ago. He came into the world to save sinners like me. I heard it, but there was an element of “yeah, but…” “Yeah, but what about all the ways I come up short? Yeah, but what about all the thoughts I have about others that are unkind? Yeah, but what about the way I treat those I love that isn’t loving?” It went on and on. With God there is no “Yeah, but…” Easter is personal and intimate. God looks into us and washes us clean once and for all. We need this gift of grace. As we prepare ourselves for Easter, I invite you to take note of all the reasons you need this gift, this deliverance. Then rejoice that God has assured that he will make all things new and wrap us up in his resurrection.
I pray you will join us as much as you are able this week to worship and give thanks for these things that have happened. God has given Himself on our behalf and we are saved. Come and join in the feast of rejoicing!
Also, you will find an envelope enclosed. Every year we send out an Easter letter that includes an envelope to make it possible for you to give a thank offering in gratitude for the gift of new life. We can never truly say thank you enough, but it is a blessing to be able to offer out of our abundance a gift of gratitude and joyfulness.
Yours in Christ, a Redeemed and Delivered Sinner,
The Rev. Joshua T. Condon