Every day, they met together in the temple and ate in their homes. They shared food with gladness and simplicity. They praised God and demonstrated God’s goodness to everyone. The Lord added daily to the community those who were being saved. – Acts 2:46-47
“It’s like it’s still Easter!” – overheard at church this Sunday
In many respects, the week after Easter Sunday tells a lot about a church. The day is often called “low Sunday” because attendance is expected to be down, or “National Associate Pastor Sunday” because the head of staff is so often on vacation.
But we tend to do things differently around here. Pastor John was in the Caribbean, tons of people showed up for worship, and there was a “buzz” in the place like it was Easter morning all over again…
But – of course – Jesus is still risen, the tomb is still empty, it has been Easter every single day since Jesus completely shattered the power of death, and our campus was full with praise and love this weekend because we remain saturated in the life and light Jesus invites us to enter into.
Two Prayers for this week:
During the 11:15 service I served as worship leader (there are around 20 of us in the rotation); the act of preparing to lead the congregation in prayer never fails to bring my heart and mind into clear focus.
Here they are. I hope that these words will help center your spirit around the joy and the peace of the power of resurrection faith
Prayer of Praise and Adoration:
Awesome God who exists beyond our limited understanding of time and space, yet who loves us with such a specific and personal love that you gave everything on Good Friday, we gather in your presence this morning in awe of the Redemptive Grace Your Great Love set in motion, Your Son Jesus put into action, and Your Holy Spirit still sustains.
- We live not in the shadow of Calvary, but in the brilliant light of Easter Morning!
- We live not in fear, but in freedom.
- We live not bound by the accusing strictures of the law, but set free by the limitless possibilities of love.
We are in church this morning not because we earned our way into a relationship with you but because you have welcomed us just as we are.
- So we are grateful for the reach of your love;
- we are privileged to be in such a beautiful body of believers,
- and we commit ourselves to follow you without reservation because you love us without holding anything back.
Bless the Lord! Bless the Lord, O my Soul! Amen and Amen!
(Following singing the Doxology) We do praise you, Lord! We really do. We praise Father, we praise Son, and we praise Holy Ghost. You absolutely are our God from whom all blessings flow! And these blessings, the ones we humbly offer to you, we understand they were never ours to begin with.
So thank you! Thank you for the opportunity we have this morning to return this small, representative portion to you, dedicated to your work in and through the ministries of Wake Forest Presbyterian Church.
Please cover our gifts with your love, and infuse each dollar with more of your power and purpose than we can imagine. We give joyfully, and we give because you have trusted us with this work and with this unprecedented opportunity. Amen.
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.