NYNGAN EASTER CHURCH MESSAGES AND SERVICES
Nyngan Uniting Church
Easter of 2019, is almost upon us. Easter is quite late this year. As we approach Easter, we contemplate the Passion of our Lord. We re-live the sadness and brutality of Good Friday, however we quickly come to the realisation that in the power of the resurrection we find a promise that there is no force on earth that can keep the Risen Christ from us.
Jesus had been sealed in the tomb for three days. Pilate, so he thought, had shut the door on the King of the Jews once and for all.
In the Gospel of John, it is recorded that the doors were shut and locked "from fear." The disciples of Jesus had good reason to be fearful. They had no idea what the reaction of the authorities would be to news of the resurrection. The disciples were also saddened by the death of Jesus. In his death they had suffered, for them, the greatest loss.
Then, when the disciples were at their lowest, in the dead of night, the Risen Christ appeared before them in the locked room. He said to them "Peace be with you". He gave them the power to forgive sins. In short, he gave them all the power, and all the Spirit that empowered his ministry.
We too are given this Easter hope. The resurrection doesn't simply mean that Jesus rose to eternal life. It doesn't simply mean that we hope to see our loved ones when we die. It also means that the very first thing that the Risen Christ does is return to the same cowardly and misunderstanding disciples who had so disappointed and forsaken him. ...and he returns to us, if we will let him.
Your faith is based on this Easter miracle. Your relationship to God, is not based on what you can feel or believe or think. It's based upon the fact that the Risen Christ came to you, moved through whatever block you were hiding behind, breathed his life-giving breath upon you, and raised you up toward himself.
In this year of 2019, we can truly announce on Easter Day, the good news, Christ is Risen! He is Risen indeed!
Should you not have an affiliation with another church, and wish to worship over the Easter period, you are welcome to our services.
Good Friday April 19
- 9am at the Uniting Church, Cobar Street
Easter Day April 21
- 7am Sunrise service at Rotary Park
- 8am Easter breakfast in the Uniting hall
- 9am Easter day service at the Uniting Church
St Mark's Anglican Church
Come let us celebrate
Christians are a 'resurrectrion people' and 'hallelujah' is their song! As a Christian minister/priest/pastor I am called upon to witness to the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
I am called upon to proclaim that Jesus lived, died, was buried and on the third day God raised him from the dead leaving the tomb empty.
I am called upon to affirm that through his death on the cross and glorious resurrection that death has been defeated, sin forgiven, evil has been conquered, hope and new life are offered to all.
I enjoy the Easter celebration that 'Christ is risen' for Christians are not only a resurrection people but they are also an Easter people.
- 8am Good Friday
- 9am Easter Day
Nyngan Baptist Church
Your youngest child comes in and presents the evidence. An empty chocolate wrapper and a plastic coin bag with a few leftover coins. Discovered where his older brother had hidden it under the corner of his sheet. You recognise the coin bag as one that was on your bedside table-last you looked. And you can fill in the gaps of what might have happened.
How do you approach your child?
"I can't believe that you would do that? Stealing money and sneaking chocolate! Or any number of parental one-liners: "In my day I would never..." Or "What would your grandma say if she found out". Or the worst of all: "I'm so disappointed".
As your child hears your dressing down, this is what they are hearing: "Your problem is, you will never be as righteous as I am."
What do you think he's thinking inside? "I feel thankful this person is my parent. This person is so wise. So loving. I just wish we'd have more of these conversations." No.
What is wrong with that conversation- which we all know we've had?
It lacks what we Christians call the gospel. It lacks recognition of this very important detail: you are more like your child than unlike him.
What has got this child into this mess?
In a few words: Stealing. Or deceit. Greed.
Are you willing as a person, as a parent, to say that there is no stealing, no greed, no deceit- anywhere in your life?
If you are honest as a parent- there's very few things that you will ever identify in the life of your children that you can't find in your own life.
That moment with your child- when you might say things like "I can't believe you would do that"- is a God-given opportunity to experience what Christians call 'grace'. Undeserved love.
Both people in the room at that moment need the rescuing grace of Jesus. Both people do.
How different it is to stand alongside your child and say- "I know exactly how you got yourself in this mess- because I'm like you."
"But hear me- there's help for you and me. Because God sent his son to live the life that we could never live on our own. To die a death that we should have died. To rise again conquering sin and death. So that there is help for us. God loves you and has already provided exactly what you need for moments like this."
Who wouldn't want that person to be his father? That's what the gospel does. That's Easter parenting.
- We will not be having our usual Sunday church gatherings over the school holidays. To find out more about being part of our church community, please contact Pastor Richard 0401 612 768.
Hope for Easter
When we look at the story of Easter, the picture of that first Easter Sunday morning may have seemed pretty bleak. The disciples had believed that Jesus was their hope and the hope of Israel. They thought He was the one who was going to save and deliver them from Roman rule and oppression. Three days earlier their hopes were dashed. Jesus, the one they had looked to had been crucified. All hope was gone. But the story does not end there.
Perhaps you are in a situation in your life where you have lost all hope. You are at your breaking point. There have been glimmers of hope, but your last hope has died. Easter, as it did for the disciples, brings fresh hope into our life and situation.
As the story continues we read, "Very early on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb when the sun had risen. They were saying to one another, who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb? Looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled away." (Mark 16:2-4) Mary the mother of Jesus and Mary Magdalene had risen early and gone to the tomb not knowing that the stone had been rolled away. When they arrived, "Looking up" they saw the stone was rolled away. Jesus had risen. He is Alive!
"Looking up!" Our situation may seem bleak also but on this Easter Resurrection Sunday, it gives us renewed hope. Where things have seemed hopeless or felt downcast, Jesus' resurrection causes us to raise our heads and "look up" once again and bring new fresh perspective to our lives.
Let's fix our eyes on Jesus this Easter, He is our blessed hope and deliverer. When everything is coming against us let's look up, lift up our heads, and fix our gaze upon Jesus, who brings hope and victory. "Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Spirit." (Romans 15:13)
- Easter Service on Sunday April 21 at the Christian Community Centre at 10 am.