There are a lot of big smiling faces around the country after the great rains last week. Some people got up to seven inches while most of the county was well pleased with around five inches. God has blessed us with a good start for spring and we thank Him with all of our hearts. We should soon begin to see some short Bluebonnets along the sides of the road and some great grass in the fields and hills. Get ready for a cutting of hay in June. So smile, that sun looks really fine. And thank God continually for the rain; God is good all the time.
Brenda Kothmann will be celebrating her birthday on March 24th. Have a great time as all of the Kothmann family gets together.
Sam Hoerster reported that his granddaughter Jessica Bibb came successfully through her surgery and was healing at home. Continue your prayers for Chuck Smith as he heals after an auto accident. Pray for healing for Monica Cotter, Stephen Mutschink’s eye, and for Jim Grohman.
It was good to have Maria Mutis add to our service with her violin music and spend spring break with the Jordan family. It was also great to have all of the Max Jordan family together in church.
Matt Krause has enlisted in the US Navy and will be leaving on August 10th. We are going to miss you Matt and we are really proud of you for your willingness to serve your country.
Practice for the Easter music presentation is at 6:00 p.m. on every Sunday and maybe even during the Sunrise Service.
Reverend Mark Krause’s sermon was titled “Radical Hospitality”. The Gospel scripture comes from John 12:1-8. Jesus had just raised Lazarus from the dead and Martha was preparing a supper for them as they all sat at the table. And Mary took a pound of ointment of pure liquid nard, a rare, expensive perfume, and she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped them with her hair. And the whole house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
But Judas Iscariot, the disciple who was about to betray Jesus, said, Why was this perfume not sold for 300 denarii, a year’s wages for an ordinary workman, and that money given to the poor and destitute? He had said this not because he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief who had all of the money from the money box of the disciples from which he pilfered for himself. But Jesus said, Let her alone. The ointment was intended to be used for My preparation for burial.
Which of these people showed “Radical Hospitality”? Mary surely did by her act of pouring her expensive oil on the feet of Jesus. Women of that time were not to touch a man, except for her husband. But Mary also dried Jesus’ feet with her hair. Mary loved Jesus with all her heart and washing His feet was an act of radical hospitality.
Martha had cleaned the house and busied herself preparing and serving the supper. She was showing only regular hospitality.
Judas outwardly showed a form of radical hospitality. He wanted to sell the oil and use the money for the poor people. But he did not really care for the poor; he cared for himself. He could not overcome his selfish ways. He was only thinking of himself.
But Jesus was radical in His hospitality. He had raised Lazarus to life after being dead for four days. That was pretty radical. Jesus had shown love to everyone; that is what God is all about. Love will fill your heart. Love is the way of life for Jesus. He went out of His way to die on the cross for our sins.
How can you be radical in your hospitality in the church? When you meet some one new, remember their name. Listen, ask again for their name. Engage them in knowing conversation. Find out something about them. Then, relate them, that is, link them to someone that you know has similar interest. Do this within the first 5 minutes after meeting them before church starts. Do the same thing after church.
Do something out of the ordinary, Go outside of the box. Show people God’s love. Read in 1 Peter 4:9 that we are to “Practice hospitality to one another (those of the household of faith). [Be hospitable, be a lover of strangers, with brotherly affection for the unknown guest, the foreigners, the poor, and all others who come your way who are of Christ’s body.] And [in each instance] do it ungrudgingly (cordially and graciously, without complaining but as representing Him). And in Romans 12:13, it reads, “Contribute to the needs of God’s people [sharing in the necessities of the saints]; pursue the practice of hospitality.” Both references are from The Everyday Life Bible by Joyce Meyer.
You are part of God’s church. Don’t let you pride get in your way of getting to know others. Pray and surrender all to Jesus. Do not be like Martha, doing only the small stuff, or like Judas, a selfish thief. But be like Jesus, showing love to all. And, live like Jesus all of the time.