Lutheran Home Association Blog

Day 38 of Lent: Worship

Posted on Thu, Apr 18, 2019

For hundreds of years, the Christian church has set aside the Thursday before Easter as “Maundy Thursday," an opportunity to remember and reflect on what Jesus did on that Thursday before he died.  As we have the opportunity today in worship to receive The Lord’s Supper, in worship and private meditation, to contemplate what The Lord’s Supper means for us. We are part of a community, a community of Christians which goes back nearly 2,000 years.

dawn-1867390_1920As he instituted The Lord’s Supper, Jesus commanded that we love one another as he loves us. Our verse for today gives us a reminder of that: “Let us not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:25).

These words are very timely and important in a number of ways.  First of all, there are many who will gather in worship with fellow Christians over the next several days who likely haven’t been in church in quite a while or might even feel guilty or uncomfortable about coming to church.  What can we do to give them a sense of community and as the verse says “encouraging one another?" 

There are some who might feel unworthy to come to church because of how they’ve lived their life or what they’ve done.  I’ve actually heard comments to that end from people who think their sin is too great or their lifestyle has been so offensive that there is no way God could love them or accept them.

Sometimes the first step in helping people know that God loves, accepts and forgives everyone is by providing a sense of community among God’s people on earth that helps get past these misconceptions or doubts.  That paves the way for Christians to show love and then share the love which God gives as people hear and grow in his Word and Sacraments.

You’ve probably heard the “it takes a village” analogy for certain ideas.  Yes, the concept of community is great wherever we live. Let’s not give up on extending the love and acceptance of a Christian community to everyone we can.

Posted by Joel Gaertner

Rev. Joel Gaertner is The Lutheran Home Association Vice President of Ministry and National Director of Jesus Cares Ministries (JCM). He provides spiritual guidance to our entire organization and develops and guides JCM programs in congregations. Pastor Gaertner and his wife, LuAnn, live in Cudahy, Wis., and have two adult children. Outside work, he enjoys golf, walking and watching just about any sporting event, especially the Green Bay Packers.

Tags: Christian Life