Meet! Experience! Live!

Drawn to the Cross

A Devotional Journey for Lent 2011
St John's Lutheran Church and School
La Grange, Illinois

Fifth Week in Lent
Apr 10 - Apr 16



Apr 10
Monday Apr 11
Tuesday Apr 12
Wednesday Apr 13
Thursday Apr 14
Friday Apr 15
Saturday Apr 16

March 14-April 13

Monday 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday Noon

Holy Week
April 17-23
Three Days of Prayer
Together at the Cross

Mon 4/18 - 7:00 p.m.
Tue  4/19 - 7:00 p.m.
Wed 4/20 - 7:00 p.m.

Maundy Thursday
   Noon and 7:00 p.m.

Good Friday
   Noon and 7:00 p.m.
   (Tenebrae @7p.m)

Easter Sunday
April 24

6:30 a.m.
Sunrise Service

8:00 & 10:45 a.m.
Festival Worship with choirs, handbells and orchestra.

Easter Breakfast

9:00-10:30 a.m.

View Previous Years of Devotions from St. John's Archive

Lent 2010
Love Letters

Lent 2009
Meet! Experience! Live!

Lent 2008
United in Prayer





April 14, 2011

Preparing for a Trip to Eternity


Matthew 24:1-25


“Watch out that no one deceives you.”  (v. 4)

My husband George and I like to travel. Getting ready is always a great education, but prior to any trip, as we read about the destination chosen, we have many questions about what it will be like. Will it be safe? Will we have a good experience? Will we be with a compatible group? Are we prepared?

In Matthew 24, Jesus describes the end of our earthly world, and warns his disciples of what will happen before His final Coming. As hard as it is to imagine our world not being here, though we’ve been told that day will come “someday,” we must prepare our hearts and minds as though it will happen tomorrow. For those of us who are “planners,” being caught unprepared is unthinkable. Isn’t it just as unthinkable not to be prepared for our face-to-face meeting with our God?

Many horrendous, frightening events are happening in our world, from natural disasters to political and social upheavals. Are any of these what Christ foretold? The simple answer is, we just don’t know. As a Girl Scout, I was taught to “be prepared.” This was Jesus’ advice, too, to His followers 2000 years ago. So how does one prepare for the unknowable? We weren’t emailed an itinerary for heaven or given passports, except those in our hearts. We don’t, however, have to worry about our trip costs, which were paid in full on Good Friday.

Christ warned His disciples that rumor and speculation would be rife, and we are certainly seeing the predicted “nation rising against nation” and person against person. But He also promised that, at the end of the journey, we would reap the salvation He promised to those who endure. Jesus showed His disciples Solomon’s temple, and told them that no stone would be left standing on another. Much of that temple is already destroyed, leaving only the Western (Wailing) Wall. Here, Jews (and curious Christians) come to pray or watch as worshippers place prayers written on scraps of paper into crevices between the stones still standing. They won’t always be!

Prayer Dear Lord, We pray that you will find us ready whenever that time comes for an unimaginable journey—to be with You, our Lord!

Barbara Birmingham