“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)
Jesus’ beautiful words speak to so many of our hearts these days. The Lord is not only offering “rest” to those whose bodies are sore and tired from physical labor. He also addresses those who are worn out emotionally, tired mentally, and overwhelmed by the world’s concerns and cares. We could all use some “rest,” couldn’t we?
The COVID-19 pandemic just drags on and on, and we’re getting tired of waiting for a return to the way things used to be. Those whose jobs put them in places of danger, or whose loves ones are in harm’s way, are weary of worrying about safety. Political fights, racial divides, social protests, cancelled events, complaints about government officials, uncertainties about resuming school, massive unemployment, financial hardships, rising grocery prices … the list of things that tire and exhaust us seems endless.
Jesus offers “rest.” Rest for your souls. He’s not offering release from all of our worldly problems, or promising a stress-free life for you this week. But he’s offering soul-rest. He wants to bring healing and restoration to your soul, and to make your connection with God solid, strong, and unbreakable. Only Jesus can do that!
“Come to me,” he invites you today. Spend time with Jesus, today. Listen to his words, today. Take his promises to heart, today. Trust that he’ll keep those promises, today. Recognize his love for you, today. Reflect on his sacrifice in your place, today. Talk about your burdens with him in prayer, today.
Have a restful day!
We intend to continue to hold our ten-person Communion services here at Hope, until we’re able to resume in-person weekend worship services. You’re welcome to participate, and to receive the Sacrament, on a weekly basis. Advance sign-up is required for all individuals and family members attending (including those who will not be receiving Communion). Guests and visitors are asked to call the church office (919-554-8109) to speak with one of the pastors before communing. Sign-ups for next week, Monday/Tuesday mornings and Wednesday evening, are now available. To sign up, click on the link below.
For those who sign up for a Communion Service, here’s what to expect.
- Please enter through the main narthex doors, off the circle drive.
- Kindly use the hand sanitizer stations as you enter.
- We ask you to wait in the designated area of the narthex, with six feet between individuals or families, as marked, until the service leader invites you into the sanctuary.
- We encourage all who are attending (except those under two years old) to wear a face mask, to help reduce the risk of an asymptomatic person unknowingly spreading the virus.
- The group will be invited to stand in front of the altar rail, with six feet between individuals or families, as marked, for a brief service of Scripture, prayer, the confession of sins, and the Sacrament.
- All will be asked to remain standing, as Communion is served and children receive a blessing.
- Only individual cups will be used, and not the common cup (chalice).
- Those preparing and serving the Communion elements will be wearing masks and gloves, as a precaution.
- As the service concludes with a blessing, the group will leave the sanctuary to allow time to prepare for the next group to enter.
Join the Hope family for weekly online worship services, available every weekend on Hope’s website (www.hopelutheranwf.org/worship-resources) by Saturday 5:00 PM. Our current sermon series is focusing on the organic connections between Christ’s ministry and Hope Lutheran Church’s ministry.
We have so much to pray about in our world, and in our lives. We’re accustomed to filling out prayer cards during the worship services, and dropping them into the offering plate. Currently, we’re asking you to send in prayer requests via the church website (www.hopelutheranwf.org/covid-19-response/prayer-requests/). We’ll read those requests during our online worship services. Please take time during the week to pray through the list of requests on your own, as well.
We’re daily receiving offering envelopes in the mail, or via electronic transfer, and those stewardship gifts are very much appreciated and needed. We understand that not everyone will be able to maintain their previous giving levels, due to the tremendous economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic; but we ask all of our church members to be as faithful in stewardship as possible. Gifts of all sizes are much appreciated. For more information about Hope’s electronic giving options, go to www.hopelutheranwf.org/donate. As the Good Book says, “God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).
God be with you until we meet again!