My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness ... When every earthly prop gives way, He then is all my hope and stay. On Christ, the solid rock, I stand; all other ground is sinking sand. -- Lutheran Service Book # 575
I’ve heard it said that financial planning is like the legs of a stool. One leg is your long-term investments; another is life insurance; and I forget what the other one or two legs are. I’ve never been real good at rational life planning, but it’s not important here anyway. What is important is the idea. Your “nest egg” rests on this metaphorical stool, and if any one of the legs break, the whole stool falls over and crack goes the egg. So you’d better make sure you have a strong stool.
And so we can imagine the same thought applies in the hymn above. “When every earthly prop gives way, He then is all my hope and stay.” The hymn is talking about how we build our earthly lives upon all sorts of props, crutches, “legs” of a stool we rest on for comfort. But for the Christian, when any or all of these things fail us it doesn’t matter. Because our hope is not built on earthly props anyway, but on Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
We have insurance policies and investments. We have friends who we trust and family whom we love. We have a government that protects our rights and spend our taxpayer dollars for the greater good. We have our homes, our health and health care. We have fresh water and ample food. We have gainful employment and savings accounts. We have banks eager to loan us money and mortgages, and credit cards to lend us more. We lean on these things, and they are just a few of our earthly props that we build our lives upon for stability and comfort.
The problem is that any one of these props could give way at any moment. Not to sound like Chicken Little...but seriously! At any moment these precious plastic props can give way, and can you handle the fall? Imagine, if you dare, that every earthly prop does give way...where is your hope and stay? The hymn above is called, “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less”, and that’s true enough. But I think it should have been called, “My Church is Built on Nothing Less.” After all, the hymn is based, at least in part, upon a select verse in Holy Scripture. Peter says from his heart that Jesus is “The Messiah, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus responds, “Upon this rock, I will build my Church” (Matthew 16:18). Jesus planned to build his Church on the mindful conviction and the heartfelt fact that He, Jesus, is the Saviour of men and the Son of God.
A Church can be one of two things. On the one hand, it can be just another earthly prop amongst all the others. For one, it can be a business of blessings or a prayer for prosperity. It can teach your children good morals and a respect for their elders until they grow out of it. It can be a Rec. Centre or a support group. I just read an article the other day about a Gallup poll finding that “Church Chases Away the Sunday Blues”...as if the Church is just good psychotherapy. These are earthly props. The Church can be all these things while taking or leaving the cross of Christ. Or...on the other hand...the Church can be built on nothing more nor less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I am so proud to be in a Church that is built on the bedrock of Christ. Sure, we all have earthly props that are quite comfortable while they last. And make no mistake, God Himself gives them to us. But at Immanuel, when you bore down to the bedrock, there’s Christ forgiving sins and feeding eternal life to everyone who wishes to hold onto a perfect prop...a heavenly prop...a solid Rock.
A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. If your truck is stuck in a rut, it only takes one weak link to break the tow chain. If Jesus is only one link in your chain of faith, your chain’s not strong enough. Sure, Jesus is the strongest link and He will never break, but the other earthly links can and will break. Better to just have Jesus be the whole chain. And he’s not just a name or a slogan. He is the solid rock on which you stand when all around is sinking sand. He’s the reason you can smile on Sunday, for by his blood and righteousness alone are you are chained to eternal life. On Christ, Pastor Nathan
HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE
Please note the following schedule of special services during Holy Week:
April 5th 6:30 p.m. Maundy Thursday worship with Holy Communion. Please join us as we celebrate the celebrate the institution of the Lord’s Supper and as the altar is stripped in preparation for Good Friday.
April 6th Good Friday: 11:00 a.m. In this solemn service we recall the suffering of our Savior on the cross of Calvary, and rejoice in triumphal statement of Christ, “It is finished.” Everything has been accomplished for our salvation...there is nothing that we can add.
April 8th Easter Sunday: 9:00 a.m. Traditional Worship with Holy Communion 10:00 a.m. Easter Breakfast - everyone welcome. 11:00 a.m. Contemporary Worship with Holy Communion
Happy Easter!! Alleluia!! There will be no Sunday School classes Easter Sunday morning, but,….There will be Sunday School children greeting people, at the doors, Easter morning, at the 11 am service. There will also be some Sunday School children handing out the daffodils that will be put on the cross, Easter morning. The Sunday School children will also be participating in the service by singing a song that they have been practicing at Sunday School. Their Easter song goes like this: (It is sung to the tune of, “Jesus Loves the Little Children”) “Jesus died for all the children, All the children of the world. It doesn’t matter who they are, Jesus knows them all by heart. Then Jesus rose for all the children of the world.” The lessons the children will be studying in April are: “Jesus Dies and Lives Again”; April 1. “Jesus re-instates Peter”; April 15. “Paul’s First Missionary Journey”; April 22. “Paul and Timothy”; April 29. Something you can do together as a family is from the lesson “Jesus Dies and Lives Again”. It goes like this: say the words together: “You love us so much! Thank You, Lord Jesus. You died on the cross for us, Thank You, Lord Jesus. You took away all our sins. Thank You, Lord Jesus. Then You became alive again. Thank You, Lord Jesus. We love You, Jesus. Amen.” We look forward to a wonderful month studying these lessons and celebrating Easter with your children! Alleluia!!
COUPLES GAME NIGHT OUT
On April 27th we are having our monthly Couple’s Games night in the fellowship hall at 7:00 p.m. Couples of all ages are welcome!!! We are having so much fun at this event every month and we would like to share in the fun! You are more than welcome to bring one of your favorite games and a snack to share. If you have any questions you can call me at 403-317-0258. So come on out and have a night of laughs & fun. Don’t be shy!!!! Respectfully, Candice Miller
PARISH COORDINATOR UPDATE
The congregation had authorized Parish Planning Council to hire a full-time Parish Coordinator to address the staffing needs at Immanuel. The hiring committee received one applicant who offered to fill the position in a part-time capacity. In the interests of respecting the congregation’s original mandate, the hiring committee has resolved to bring the matter to the voters to seek authorization to hire a part time Parish Coordinator. There will be a special voters meeting to this end on April 1st at 12:00 p.m. to address the matter.
Immanuel Lutheran Church Financial Statement February, 2012
MISSION OFFERINGS A-BC District Mission Donations for Month $260.00 A-BC District Mission Donations to Date 530.00 CLWR Mission Donations for Month 181.00 CLWR Mission Donations to Date 376.00
BANK ACCOUNTS Servus Credit Union Cheq. Acc.t Balance $48,221.91 Dedicated Accounts Balance 21,081.47 Church Extension Term Deposit 10,132.41
CURRENT MONTH Budgeted Income 31,897.08 Actual Income 27,099.23 Budgeted Disbursements 31,897.08 Actual Disbursements
YEAR TO DATE Budgeted Income 63,794.17 Actual Income 56,325.78 Budgeted Disbursements 63,794.17 Actual Disbursements 53,430.18
20 Rocky Mountain Blvd West Lethbridge AB T1K 8E1 (403) 327-4336 firstname.lastname@example.org
Office hours and worship schedule
Office hours: 8:30 AM - 2:30 PM, Monday - Friday
Sunday Worship: 9:00 AM - Traditional Service 11:00 AM - Contemporary Service 11:15 AM - Sunday School (following the Object Lesson)