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Lincoln Herald | Lincolnton, NC

home : religion : religion July 2, 2020

4/5/2020 3:19:00 PM
Jesus Is A Way Maker
Charles R. Swindoll — 'Life is  10% what happens to you and  90% how you react to it.'

Charles R. Swindoll — 'Life is 
10% what happens to you and 
90% how you react to it.'

Rev. Susan Smith
Emanuel Reformed Church

Sunday was Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week, a solemn week focusing on the final days of Jesus’ life. Usually this is a very busy week for Christians, with Holy Week services leading to Easter Sunday – the most important day of the year in our faith tradition. Church services are canceled due to the coronavirus, but this will not stop the celebration of Easter for us.

John 12:12-13 
12 The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13 They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the king of Israel!”

As Jesus was entering Jerusalem for the last time people lined the roads and greeted him with palm branches because they were symbols of joy and triumph customarily used on festive occasions. Kings and conquerors were welcomed with palm branches being strewn before them and waved in the air. Many in the crowd that day were celebrating how Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead and all the other miracles he had performed. It was a glorious day to be his disciple.

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On Palm Sunday many churches distribute palm branches which are waved in the air to rejoice over what the Lord has done for us, but this year we had to celebrate at home. Many Christians hung a palm branch or piece of greenery on their door to show their neighbors that nothing could stop their praise.

Holy Week is a good time to count our blessings and consider the miracles that the Lord has worked in our life. At times the road ahead looked dark and we saw no way out but then He worked a miracle. One of my favorite gospel songs is called “Jesus is a Way Maker” and it says “When I was sick, He made me well. He healed my body, now I can tell. When I was lonely, He was my friend. He’ll stick right with me until the end. When I was down, He picked me up, my Jesus loves me and that’s enough. Jesus is a way maker……”

So, wave your palm branch for all the times that Jesus made a way for you because you have seen hard times before. This is not the first time you have faced difficulty and uncertainty in your life. The Lord brought you through before and he can do it again. Wave your palm branch of praise because the same God that was on the mountaintop with us in the booming economy of the past year is still with us now in the valley of sudden massive unemployment and fear of disease. Wave your palm branch of praise for how the Lord is walking with you through the coronavirus pandemic one day at a time.

If your church is closed and not yet offering online worship services, or you do not use the internet – please join me next Sunday. On Facebook at 7 a.m. I will offer a traditional Sunrise Service on the Emanuel Reformed Church of Lincolnton page, or you can also attend on the phone by dialing 605-313-6045 and use access code 856552 to hear the service. At 4 p.m. next Sunday I will offer a traditional Easter worship service on Facebook and by conference call in the same way. Nothing – not even a pandemic – can stop Easter from coming for God’s people.

Rev. Smith is the pastor of Emanuel Reformed Church and she can be reached at 828-962-8196 or or P.O. Box 3311 Hickory NC 28602.

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