There is a lot going on, so I want to share a few things with you.
First of all, when you enter the sanctuary this Sunday you’ll notice that the newly-restored modesty rail in front of the choir loft is back, looking beautiful, and so is the higher center section. The pulpit and large communion table will soon be removed and taken to the woodworking shop to be repaired and refinished. The sanctuary renovations aren’t complete yet, but you’ll see progress over the next few weeks and, with the exception of the pulpit, the renovations are scheduled to be completed by the end of July. For more information, click here to view our full report.
Secondly, Susan and I will be leading a tour to Israel. We will leave Sunday after worship. It will be a joy once again to experience the new knowledge and inspiration we’ll gain in the land of the Bible. Please keep the group in your prayers.
Finally, on Sunday in the sanctuary we’ll read some of Paul’s words to the Romans about resurrection. We have a tendency to think of resurrection in abstract terms far removed from our experience or we think of it as a past or future reality. He brings the concept of resurrection down to earth and makes it a reality in the present. Here are portions of Sunday’s reading (Romans 6:1b-11):
…Don’t you know that all who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore, we were buried together with him through baptism into his death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too can walk in newness of life. If we were united together in a death like his, we will also be united together in a resurrection like his. …if we died with Christ, we have faith that we will also live with him. We know that Christ has been raised from the dead and he will never die again. Death no longer has power over him. He died to sin once and for all with his death, but he lives for God with his life. In the same way, you also should consider yourselves dead to sin but alive for God in Christ Jesus.
Alive for God: what a great phrase and what a great goal! As we gather Sunday, we’ll think together about this: what does it mean for you and for me to put to death the old and allow the new to be born so that we are “alive for God in Christ Jesus?”
I look forward to seeing you then.
Grace and Peace,