Anticipation Amid the Grind

I’m not sure how your day’s going. Mine’s fairly normal. A bit busier, I suppose, than usual. I was up too late last night, but adrenaline is keeping me going today. This is a big week at church – Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services coming in addition to Easter Sunday – the most important day in human history! But it doesn’t seem like it, does it? If you have kids (and maybe even if you don’t), Christmas Day seems to have more anticipation.

I realize Sunday’s coming – and Thursday and Friday, but it’s just Tuesday. Seemingly, an ordinary Tuesday. Paperwork. Diapers. Tool belts. Staff meetings. Expense reports. Life just keeps grinding on.

It needs to. The world keeps turning. But I want to help today. I’ll keep it brief, but I want to help you keep your head, as much as possible, in what is called Passion Week (passion is drawn from the Latin word for suffering). Below you’ll see the chart that shows us what Jesus’ final week looked like – it’s the same one from last week’s email. Take a moment to consider what Jesus was doing on Tuesday of His Passion Week.

Last Sunday we saw how God is often working in a deeper way than we could have hoped as we relived the Triumphal Entry on Palm Sunday – with the help of our kids walking through the service waving palms! A thriving life is available, but it isn’t easy.

Maundy Thursday and Good Friday are fast approaching, but I want to make sure you take some time today to thank God for the work He did in Jesus some 2000 years ago. Thank Him for saving you by paying for your sins on the cross, which we’ll celebrate on Friday evening.

So can I ask you to do something for just a couple minutes today? Amid the grind, pause today for a couple minutes to give thanks and ask God to help you really enter into this week of worship.

There are a few ways to do that. We will be combining forces with the Cypress campus at the Cypress campus (6143 Ball Road, Cypress) on Thursday and Friday. The Maundy Thursday service relives the Last Supper on Thursday at 6:30 and Good Friday, which focuses on the cross, is on Friday at 7:00. Maundy Thursday is a great family-friendly event. There are some intense scenes on Friday so we will have appropriate children’s programming for ages/grades …

And, of course, we’ll be back at the Los Al Community Center on Sunday morning at 10:00 celebrating Jesus’ resurrection! We hope you’ll join us for as many of these services as you’re able.

We also need some help in preparation. As the Branch we’re responsible for set up for the Maundy Thursday service. Join us at the Cypress campus at 6:00 on Wednesday evening (we’ll have pizza) to help set up. Many hands should make light and fun work. There will be work for the kids, too! This is a family service event for our family church.

One more thing! Don’t forget that you have friends who need Jesus. Encourage them to join us for one of these services. It will be a great opportunity for them to see what Jesus has done for us and to hear the Good News!

Can’t wait to see y’all,

Pastor Justin




Calendar Days



·    Arrival in Bethany (John 12:1)
Saturday ·    Evening celebration, Mary anoints Jesus

(Matthew 26:6-13; John 12:2-8)

Sunday ·  Triumphal entry into Jerusalem (Matt. 21:1-9;

John 12:12-18

·  Jesus surveys the temple area (Mark 11:11)

·  Return to Bethany (Mark 11:11)

Monday ·  Cursing the fig tree on the way to Jerusalem (Mark 11:12-14; cf. Matt. 21:18-22)

·  Cleansing the temple (Matt. 21:12-13; Mark 11:15-17)

·  Return to Bethany (Mark 11:19)

Tuesday ·  Debates with religious leaders in Jerusalem and teaching in the temple (Matt. 21:23-23:39; Mark 11:27-12:44)

·  Olivet Discourse (Matt. 24:1-25:46; Mark 13:1-37)

Wednesday ·  “Silent Wednesday” – Jesus and his disciples remain in Bethany

·  Judas makes arrangements for the betrayal

(Matt. 26:14-16; Mark 14:10-11)

Thursday ·  Preparations for Passover (Matt. 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16)

·  Passover meal and Last Supper (Matt. 26:20-25;

Mark 12:17-25)

·  Upper Room discourses (John 13-17)

·  Prayers in Garden of Gethsemane (Matt. 26:36-46;

Mark 14:32-42

Friday ·  Betrayal and arrest (Matt. 26:47-56; Mark 14:43-50)

·  Jewish trial

Annas – John 18:13-24

Caiaphas – Matt. 26:57-68; Mark 14:53-65

Sanhedrin – Matt. 27:1-2; Mark 15:1

·  Roman trial (three phases)

Pilate – Matt. 27:2-14; Mark 15:2-5

·  Crucifixion (approx 9:00am to 3:00pm; Matt. 27:27-54;

Mark 15:16-39)

Sunday ·  Resurrection witnesses (Matt. 28:1-8; Mark 16:1-8;

Luke 24:1-12)

·  Jesus’ resurrection appearances (Matt. 28:9-20;

Luke 24:13-53; John 20-21




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