Season of Lent - March 18, 2018
Message: Lifted Up
Scripture: John 12:20-33
During the season of Lent, we spend time examining our lives, taking a look at where we on the right track, and where we might have strayed away from God's will. It's an important practice, because as Christians we're called to a life of constant renewal and transformation: Lent helps us along the way. But sometimes we can get lost in the weeds during Lent. Spending time in this sort of reflection often makes us all too aware of our shortcomings, our failures, and if we're being honest, our sins. What started out as a well-intentioned season of renewal can sometimes become a heavy burden.
Jesus' life shows us that there is no renewal without carrying this burden - there is no light without darkness. Jesus often told his disciples that his ministry would end in a brutal death, but they didn't always understand what he was saying. This week, we'll read from John 12:20-33, when Jesus once again comments on the cost of discipleship and points toward his impending death on the cross. The disciples and the crowd gathered around him don't understand, but Jesus is speaking deep truths about what it means to follow him.
Jesus' remarks don't stop there, though. Yes, Jesus points to his death on the cross, but he speaks about it in a totally unexpected way! He speaks about being glorified and lifted up in that moment, and about how the world will be redeemed by it. He's telling them that his death is not the end, that there will be beauty even in that darkest of moments. And for us, it's not just a reminder of the saving power of the cross - Jesus' words also remind us that we can always be redeemed, always be "lifted up," even when the weight of our sins and mistakes seem too heavy to bear.
Join us this Sunday as we ponder Jesus' words and what they mean for us today though the sermon "Lifted Up."