“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (John 15:7, NRSV)
Clicking the keys on my computer and arranging letters into words for this month’s Newsline, I cannot help but reflect on what an amazing month April was. Holy Week was a powerful time worshiping together beginning with our Palm/Passion Sunday service, then Holy Thursday, and finally our Community Good Friday service hosted by the Free Methodist Church here in Milan. Easter Sunday was energy and hope-filled beginning with our Fellowship Breakfast and moving into worship in remembrance and celebration of the Resurrection. Our celebration continued with our Eastertide Cantata that was filled with numerous surprises and powerful spirit. There is a buzz around our Marble 20/20 initiative where we are engaging in open and faithful conversation as a congregation as to whom we are and how we can continually live into that vision as a local church. We continue to forward plan our summer month events and programs aimed at maintaining our momentum and spiritual formation, as well as all the on-going ministries and activities that continue to take place. In some ways it feels like there is so much going on, and at the same time it feels like we are just getting started. Whew!
Then I remember what season of the Christian year we are in and the message it offers us above all others, that the resurrection means new life. Embracing Christ’s resurrection means that we offer ourselves to abide in Christ and we seek to make the words of Jesus abide within us. When we do so, that which we earnestly wish is made manifest for us by God’s grace—to rejoice as the body of Christ. It is amazing how God takes the giving of so many people’s time, resources, dedication and prayers, abides within them and makes us the body of Christ, i.e., the Church. With an April like we just had, I can hardly wait for May. May you be aware of Christ’s presence abiding in you, and may you reflect that presence to all you may encounter.
Peace and blessings … Pastor Bob