Category Archives: Lent 2015

Monday, March 30, 2015

When it was evening, Jesus came with the twelve. And when they had taken their places and were eating, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.” Mark 14: 17-18

This unforgettable verse of course refers to the Passover meal, or Lord’s Supper, where Jesus sat down for a final time with the twelve disciples, and uttered this astounding prediction of impending deceit.

Needless to say, the twelve men were stunned to hear this, (at least perhaps eleven of them, anyway), and immediately began to deny any personal involvement in such treachery. In fact, Jesus went on then to proclaim that “woe would come to his betrayer and better that he had never even been born . . .” The culprit Jesus referred to was indeed Judas Iscariot, who later in a fit of remorse hung himself.

So what were Jesus’ reasons for stating out loud to his disciples what he already knew to be fact, and the eventual heart-breaking and tumultuous outcome? Was it possible that when it was all said and done, and when the dust had settled, that he wished for the twelve to be able to look not only back, but forward, and accept his word as the true Gospel?

After all, just as Jesus breathed his last on the cross, and the surrounding skies had become black, the temple curtain was rent in two from top to bottom, and even the previously taunting Roman centurion at the foot of the cross declared in awe, “Truly, this was the Son of God . . .”

All in all, these incomparable and fascinating events leading up to Easter make for some of the most gripping and powerful narrative a Christian could even want to read or digest. Just take it from someone who has not even scratched the surface when it comes to scripture, and what is truly the greatest story ever told . . .

Prayer: Dear Beautiful Savior, we will never be able to express in human words or deeds our appreciation of your divine gift. Please hear our prayers of hope regardless, and continue to shine your grace and living light upon us . . .

Stephen Lynn Meyers

Saturday, March 28, 2015

They brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it, and he sat on it. Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut in the fields. Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting, “Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!” Mark 11:7-9

In this passage, many believers welcomed Jesus with open arms. They gave him a welcome fit for a king. After all, he is a King. When I think of how glorious this day must have been, I can’t help but wonder, would I have been there? If I lived in that time, would I have been able to drop everything and believe a man that claims he is the Son of God? I would like to think so. Many of Jesus’ followers doubted and then believed. It is so hard to run blindly toward something, but isn’t that kind of what we are doing in our faith? Running toward something we can’t see but know in our hearts is there. We all struggle to stay on the path that God wants for us. We all have questions that we know will never be answered in our time on Earth. But I know that no matter what doubts or fears we have, we will one day find that absolute truth when we meet Jesus again. And I for one cannot wait.

Prayer: God, please help me not forget that you are with me always. In my times of doubt and sin, guide me back to you, for you are the only answer in my life. Amen

Allison Grove

Friday, March 27, 2015

Whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many. Mark 10: 43-45

Many people feel that power displays itself through leadership. However, these verses clearly teach us that service to others is far more important than power and greatness. Serving others embodies the teachings and life of Jesus which becomes the model of true greatness in the eyes of God. Jesus came into this world to serve – not to be served. A lesson from an organization (Kids Across America) entitled “Servanthood” shares six characteristics of a servant. They are:

No announcing/publicizing what you are going to do.
Meeting needs of others in an active way.
Not exerting authority over others.
Not expecting thanks from others.
Not exhibiting weakness.
Being humble.

Jesus’ life, through actions and words, embodies all of these characteristics of a servant. If we want or desire greatness, then we also need to incorporate these characteristics into our everyday lives. We should not expect to be served but be serving others. We need to place the wants and needs of others ahead of our own. Through our actions, we place all greatness and power in the hands of God – just like Jesus did through his life of servanthood. Jesus was sent to serve God’s people. In return, God’s people have been saved and freed from sin through the death of Jesus – the King of Kings.

Prayer: Dear God, help me to put the wants and needs of others before my own. Lead me to serve you and others through my words and actions while exhibiting the characteristics of servanthood throughout my life. In your name I pray, Amen.

Linda Tritapoe

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Therefore God has exalted him and gave him the name that is above every other name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2: 9-11

When God dictated that his Voice take human form, his personification – not just godly, but also very human – became subject to all of the physical limitations to which you and I eventually succumb. His embodiment – Jesus – humbly dedicated himself to sharing the truth of God’s Word, even though he knew it would mean he would have to suffer earthly death and pain. Dedicating himself to this goal – spreading the good news that God loves us and is ever-forgiving – meant giving up himself for us. Accordingly, though it is so very difficult for us mortals to do, it seems only appropriate that it is up to us to return the favor and give up ourselves for him.

Prayer: Dear God, may we remember the sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf, and may we be ever mindful of the debt we owe and the many earthly actions we can take to repay toward others a portion of what he did for us.

Roger and Marti Stenersen

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed by demons begged him that he might be with him. But Jesus refused, and said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and what mercy he has shown you.” Mark 5: 18-19

The man who had been possessed wanted to follow Jesus, but Jesus sent him back into the town to be a witness of the salvation that Jesus can bring. He uses improbable citizens to defeat the devil’s strategy. If he can do that, imagine the possibilities for us . . . endless. So many ways in our lives, the Lord uses us to do his work. In our own households, neighborhoods and even across the oceans, spreading the word of God is the key to sharing his grace.

Prayer: Dear God, Let us not be silent. Let us speak to everyone in our lives about what you have done for our spirit and not be ashamed to say to others . . . he gives us all we need!

Kristen Kessler

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother, Andrew, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me and I will make you fish for people.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. Mark 1:16-18.

This verse speaks to me personally in a very special way. This verse reminds us that Jesus is calling all of us to a life of discipleship. Discipleship is an ultimate relationship with Jesus. There are many ways that Jesus calls upon us to be disciples of Christ, it requires a passionate devotion. To me, this means many things. Most importantly and above all, it means having faith. It means serving the Lord by serving others. This is done by being an active participant in your church, learning the lessons of the Bible, showing stewardship towards those in need, and spreading the word of God to others. I feel this is my responsibility to be a disciple of Christ in my family and in my profession also. I seek to strengthen my family’s beliefs in the Gospel. In my job as an educator, I share with my students the principles that lead them to also be carriers of the good word.

Prayer: God, help us to answer your call and be a disciple of your word to all that we meet.

Colette Wisnouse