We had an amazing weekend at Gateway Church in Austin! Our production team does such a great job that I know I can invite any of my friends or family, no matter whether they are new to going to church or have been devoted followers of Jesus for a long time. (The team at Mosaic are really good at this as well). It is a real skill and so worth the effort!
The Good Friday service was moving and powerful, and the Easter services were challenging and inspiring with fantastic music, spoken word, drama, and a message from John Burke at the McNeil and internet campuses and Bruce Gilson at the South campus. Here are some of the message highlights:
“Today, we’re going to go on a journey to look at the power of the message of Easter in a world of struggle and pain, and my prayer is that whether you’re a believer or wonder if there’s any reason to believe—that today will challenge you to trust more in the hope Easter brings.
Authentic faith is not afraid of doubts and questions—and in fact, the strongest faith comes in the midst of struggle, doubts, confusion, yet what emerges is
trust that brings true HOPE—that’s the story of Easter.
The message of Easter that billions celebrate around the globe today, is that God really does care about you and me and every person on this planet. He does remain hidden—for a reason—this life is not Heaven or Nirvana—it’s a birth canal. It’s a place where free-willed Creatures, created in God’s image experience traces of God’s goodness, love, joy—and the pains and sorrows of a people choosing to play God. Life is a time of choosing—to keep trusting ourselves or to trust God.
Easter reminds us, God has not remained completely hidden and unknowable, but revealed himself in the Messiah–foretold for 1000’s of years before Jesus arrived. Jesus showed us tangibly how good, and merciful and compassionate and humble God really is—how different God is than the prideful, domineering, me-first ways our world values.
On that first Good Friday, Jesus willingly hung on a bloody cross as the substitutionary payment for all our wrongdoings. So that God would be just in forgiving and adopting and doing life with anyone willing to seek him and trust him. On that Easter morning, Jesus demonstrated God’s life-giving power by conquering death and appearing risen to over 500 witnesses. God removed every barrier between all humanity and himself except the barrier of our pride—we must humble ourselves and invite God to be God in our lives. To those who do,
God offers relationship and help to become more and more what He intended.
How does God want you to trust Him more?”
You can watch the message John shared at www.gatewaychurch.com/podcast.