Here are the six messages so far in our Easter 2014 series, Words From the Cross
What’s Happening At Central Church
Easter Sunday at Central will have a slightly different schedule:
Our annual Easter Egg Hunt will take place at 10:00 AM
Following the Easter Egg Hunt, we will host a breakfast, starting at 10:15 AM
Our Easter Worship Service will begin at 11:00 AM
We will celebrate the Lord’s Supper during the Easter Worship Service
We will also be celebrating a Baptism Service following the Worship Service
The Advisory Board will meet on Monday, April 21st at 6:00 PM.
We will be collecting our annual World Missions Offering on Sunday, April 27th during the morning worship service.
On Wednesday, April 30th, the Watoto Children’s Choir will be at Central Church. We still need several host homes for this event (2-3 children plus an adult sponsor in each home)
France: This Sunday, April 13, Bruno Ling will be ordained and installed as pastor of the St. Nazaire FWB Church. Praise God for his and his family’s dedication and perseverance as he has prepared for this role. Ask God to give Bruno wisdom and insight. Pray for Jerry and Barb Gibbs as they help the church make the transition and prepare to return to the States.
Japan: Ms. Uechi, a Japanese Christian for about 50 years, shared her testimony in her church in Abashiri last Sunday. Pray her story will encourage other Christians and draw the lost to Christ. Ask God to use His 70-year-old child to spark an evangelistic fervor among Christians in Abashiri. Praise Him for her faithfulness.
Brazil: Pray for the work in Limeira, Brazil, asking God to give wisdom to Pastor Walter and fruit for the labor. As they look for a public meeting place, pray God will lead them to an area where hearts are prepared to receive the gospel.
Globally: Ask God to direct preparations for Easter services in churches around the world. Pray many people who have never been in church will attend Easter events and services, be convicted of sin, convinced of their need of Jesus Christ, and come to faith. Pray those who attend occasionally and “know” the gospel will hear it with new ears and open hearts and commit their lives to Christ.
Stateside: April is World Missions Month—an opportunity for Free Will Baptists to focus on “the ends of the earth” portion of the Great Commission. Ask God to burden hearts for the millions of people who have never heard the Way of salvation, never seen a Bible, never heard the name of Jesus. Almost 400 churches (including 11 from our mission fields) have signed up to participate in this year’s World Missions Offering (WMO) on April 27. Pray for hundreds more to participate! Pray missionaries will not become weary in well doing.
Creative Access: Angie O. and six other women are scheduled to return to the States on April 12th. They are serving in two Central Asian countries providing leadership training to Christian women. Pray for them to have safe travels and good health. Ask God to use them to truly encourage and edify our sisters in Christ.
Mission Family: Pray for expectant missionaries: Lydia Provow (due April 25, appointee to Bulgaria), Joni Hubbard (Japan, due in August), and Brenda Carney (Japan, due in September). All three have other children. Pray for healthy pregnancies and deliveries. Ask God to be with these parents, guiding them as they raise their children to have a heart for God.
Bible Reading Challenge: Luke 24:1-52
Bible Memorization Challenge: Luke 24:38–39 (ESV)…38 And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? 39 See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.”
How do you celebrate Easter?
For many people, Easter is simply a time when we hide plastic eggs filled with candy all over the place for our children (grandchildren) to search for; we dress up in new clothes and celebrate Spring. We eat a special dinner with family. We may even go to church for that twice-per-year Christian feeling.
What we are missing is the reason we truly celebrate on this coming Sunday. It is a celebration of the resurrection of Jesus. It is a Sunday where we focus on the reality of an empty tomb. Christianity could have been dealt a serious blow in those early days…if only the tomb wasn’t empty! The empty tomb is the one piece of evidence that tells me that something happened 2,000 years ago that can’t be explained by myth or legend. The local religious leaders would have paraded people through the tomb with the decaying body of Jesus in it as a means to halt the message that the disciples were preaching. Why didn’t they do it? The only answer I have is that they couldn’t do that; because the tomb was empty! Jesus rose from the dead, just as He said He would do. That empty tomb is the sign that Jesus is the Son of God, His death paid in full my sin debt, and that my faith is not in vain. The reports of the witnesses can be trusted, and the reality of my salvation isn’t just wishful thinking. Easter means that the message of grace is real, and that we should make an effort to share it with as many people as possible!
Invite someone to church this Sunday. Someone who needs to know what the real message of Easter is all about.
I hope to see you in church, soon!