This week as we prepare for Palm Sunday, I hope to offer you some reassurance as we enter another week of what appears to be a prolonged season of social distancing. During these uncertain times, it’s comforting to remind ourselves that God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Palm Sunday is just a few days away and marks the beginning of Holy Week. I encourage you to take advantage of this unusual moment in time to remember, along with me, one of God’s most beautiful names, Emmanuel—God with us! Although “Emmanuel” reminds us of the Christmas story, I believe it’s very appropriate for these uncertain days as well.
God is with us in the midst of our fears and anxieties, our frustrations and our angst as we grapple with the effects of this pandemic to our economy, how we do life and what life will look like when it’s over. It’s easy to allow fear to overtake us, and it is in moments like these that we begin to realize just how little control we really do have in our world. Nevertheless, this can be a time when we deepen our trust in Christ, Who has ultimate control and Who has already triumphed, ‘. . .having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross. . .’
Palm Sunday marks the occasion when Jesus set his face to go to Jerusalem’ for the last time, riding into the city seated on a donkey to the welcome and cheers of the crowd. For us, as believers, this is a solemn time when we contemplate the enormity of our sin and the incalculable cost of our salvation. Let’s prepare our hearts and rejoice together in God’s infinite love during the coming week as we take comfort in the fact that Jesus has promised never to leave us. Even though we’re apart, I will lead us in celebrating The Lord’s Supper Sunday morning. I hope you will join me in this celebration ‘together while we’re apart.’ If you do not have juice and bread, please contact the church office, and we will bring it to you.
As a reminder, we have a number of helpful resources on our website that you may want to use in the days ahead. I hope you will take advantage of the live stream on Palm Sunday at 10:00 a.m. along with the other worship aids we’ve posted. In addition, we also have Stephen Ministers who are available to talk with you by phone if you are feeling isolated. I, too, am available [office] 825-8192 [cell] 540-717-6828 or email. Please feel free to contact me, I am always glad to pray with you or listen as you share what is on your heart. Your church family is here for you!