A Lot Can Happen in a Week
April 3, 2023
A week is seven days, right? I’m a planner. Perhaps you are too. If you are, you know we assign the seconds, minutes, and hours over the course of seven days. Some weeks it goes just as we plan; other weeks we wonder why we even planned in the first place! But this Sunday marks a week no human could have anticipated. It was one week unlike any other in all of human history. Only one person anticipated the events that took place – and yet, all of human history changed that week. You know, a lot can happen in just a few days. How did it start?
Sunday was Palm Sunday, the day Jesus entered Jerusalem to shouts of “Hosanna!” Everyone was excited to welcome Him, the One some were saying was the Messiah for whom they had waited. Only He knew how quickly they would turn to shouts of “Crucify Him!” He still loved and cared for people all week. He taught and loved and touched people Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Thursday night He shared His last supper with His disciples and then went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. Judas brought the Pharisees and the Romans to the Garden pointing Jesus out to them. He was arrested, and the disciples fled in fear as Jesus was taken to be tried. He was falsely accused, betrayed, beaten, scourged, and kept in a deep, dark pit reserved for heinous criminals. He was deprived of sleep and food. Friday He experienced the most intensely overwhelming day. Friday He hung on the cross for six hours and died a slow agonizing death, but not before He gave a hardened criminal who was dying with Him the assurance that He would remember that man when He came into His Kingdom. It was a black and bleak Friday. His broken and bereaved friends had to get His body as quickly as they could after He had officially died, because Saturday was the Sabbath, and no Jews were able to work then. They quickly buried Him in a borrowed tomb. Then they went home to the bleakest night they had ever experienced.
How could this be happening? They started the week on Sunday with such anticipation! They enjoyed the shine from the aura surrounding Jesus and were thrilled to be on what seemed to a coronation parade. Everyone loved Jesus, it seemed, and they basked in the applause. Now He was dead. Their hopes were dashed, their hearts broken. A lot can happen in just a few days.
Ever been there? You start with incredible hope and belief and encouragement – but somehow, before you know it, everything has changed. You are in a season of shock and suffering you never saw coming. You are in the middle of a seemingly hopeless day.
But Jesus knows the way through the black Fridays and knows how to make them Good Fridays. He shows us how to do it even when our week includes things we prayed would never happen and we never wished for. We know this is not the end of the story. On the NEXT Sunday, dead three days, He kept His promise, rising alive and powerful out of the grave! A lot can happen in just a few days!
We don’t know what this week holds for us either, but we know this – we don’t have to wait till Easter to celebrate the Risen Jesus! Since that first Easter morning, Jesus followers have been gathering each and every Sunday to celebrate. That is why we choose to have church on the first day of the week. Though many people think that Sunday is a part of the weekend, it really isn’t. It’s the start of a brand-new week.
Every Sunday when we gather, we are celebrating that the price has been paid for our sins, and the resurrection of Jesus empowers us to live life with joy and certainty. Paul David Tripp rightly says, “Corporate worship is designed to confront you with a view of life that has at its center a dead man’s cross and a living man’s empty tomb.”
The apostle Paul says that the gospel of Jesus Christ, which looks like foolishness to men without God, is the only way to make sense of life. It is the only way to see life accurately. It is the only kind of wisdom that gives a reliable answer to the questions of life. At the center of this wisdom is not a set of ideas, but a real and living person – God Himself in Jesus Christ – who offers you more than wisdom. He offers you every grace and full power for everything you face in life and to be everything you were designed to be. God has given us this designated time to gather with others in His family to refocus, realign, and recharge. This is the way to life that is full and abundant.
I hope you’ll join us for our Good Friday service at 6 PM at all of our campuses along with our Epic Easter Party for kids birth-grade 5. Also, our Easter service will be Saturday at 4 PM and Sunday at 9 & 11 AM. Communion will be served at the Good Friday service.
Jesus is alive, and a lot can happen in just a few days if you focus your faith in the direction of Jesus!
Because He lives.