Dear Members and Friends of St. John,
I have two precious pieces of paper on my desk at this time. These pieces of paper are attendance cards from Holy Week worship services at St. John. Both attendance cards have prayer requests on the back. However, I hope to soon return these written prayer requests to the families involved.
One of these cards is from Sarah Svedin. The ushers brought this piece of paper to me at the altar for prayer on Palm Sunday, March 25. Sarah asks, “Can you please prayer for my brother Levi today to heal his heart!” Actually, we have been praying for Levi Svedin since before he was born. Levi’s grandparents, Ron and Ann Marie Svedin, have asked prayers for their grandson when doctors discovered problems before birth. Levi had one set of major surgeries before he left the hospital. Recently, Levi came home, recovering from heart surgery. Levi has at least one major surgery ahead of him. Oh, by the way, Sarah is 6 years old! (I confess that I broke up a little as I read Sarah’s request in her 6 year old hand-writing at the altar on that day.)
The other prayer request card I have is from Tatum Thomas. I received this card at the altar in 9:00 a.m. worship on Easter Sunday. Tatum wrote in her 7 year old hand-writing about her dad, Clint Thomas. “Pray for my dad because he has a brane tumor.” (Actually, I received 2 cards at the altar asking prayers for Clint. One prayer request was from Tatum, and one was from her mom, Carly Thomas.) We have known for a little over a month that Clint has a small brain tumor. He will have surgery on April 17. Tatum is asking for the people of St. John to pray for her dad.
Even as I write today’s devotion, my heart is full as I consider the faith and the love in these two young girls. These prayer requests bring to mind the account of Jesus and the little children. “13 People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." 16 And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.” (Mark 10:13-16)
I am thankful that these two young girls have such love for their family that, even at such a young age, they want to do something to help. I am in awe at the faith of Sarah and Tatum that they go to Jesus for the help which they need. I am humbled by their request for the people of God to join them in their prayers. The words of Jesus speak even more truth to me, “15 I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it."
Would you please join me in praying with these two young girls for their family members that God would act in love and in mercy and in power in answer to their prayers? Also, please pray for these young girls that, as they grow to be teenagers and young adults, their faith may continue and may grow.
What a great way to celebrate Jesus’ Easter victory, to go to Him asking His resurrection power and love in this world, and trusting the risen Jesus to act with power and mercy for those we love!
A Child of God, Thankful and Humbled by the Easter Faith of Children,
P.P.S. Last week was another BUSY Lenten week at St. John. Here are some more pictures from Holy Week activities.
· Here are pictures from the 2018 St. John Passover Meal. https://photos.app.goo.gl/yFfJGGeyxI1oDnDe2
P. P.P.S. Monday’s fishing? On the day after Easter I had my bait thawed, my truck loaded, and my dog along as I went to the gas station. However, the wind was blowing. When I had to use my full weight and the strength of my arms to be able to shut the door of my truck in the wind, I decided, “I’m not sure I want to fish in this wind.” There was no ice fishing on April 2.
ABOUT ‘THOUGHTS FROM THE PASTOR’ - I am sending these e-mail messages, hopefully weekly, to all St. John members and friends whose e-mails I have. (I am regularly adding new names of friends and members – in case you are just receiving this e-mail for the first time.) However, if you do not want to receive this e-mail, please let me know, and I’ll gladly leave your name off my list for this message.