Holy Week is here, which celebrates the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday, when Jesus rode triumphantly into Jerusalem, declaring himself to be the King of the Jews. It leads up to Good Friday, when Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sin. It climaxes with Easter, which celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
This is no ordinary week. It is the main event of Christianity. Of course, Christmas is special. But the fact that Jesus was born and lived on earth means nothing for our salvation, if he did not die on the cross and rise from the dead.
May this be no ordinary week for you.
Here are five ways to strategically observe Holy Week that will draw you closer to the Lord, be a blessing to others, and bring glory to God.
It has been well said that if Satan cannot kill a church, he joins it! This often happens during Holy Week. Since the enemy cannot destroy the gospel, he corrupts it. Or worse, he minimizes it.
As Easter nears, the focus of many people is on what they are going to wear. Consumerism wins the day. The message of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus is buried under new clothes, family traditions, and social gatherings.
Declare war on this infiltration. Focus your attention on the Lord Jesus Christ – who he is and what he has done on the cross to purchase your salvation and give you new life.
During Holy Week, mark out personal times to commune with the Lord in prayer. Praise God for Jesus and the salvation he provides by his blood and righteousness.
Confront the sin in your life that entangles you. Ask for more than forgiveness. Call on the Lord to help you put to death what is fleshly in you and for power to walk in the newness of life.
Pray for the spread of the gospel in your city, throughout the country, and around the world. More specifically, pray for those in your circle of contact who do not know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
Make a commitment to share your faith with some lost person during Holy Week.
In the providence of God, there are people in your life who need to trust Jesus for salvation: family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and classmates. Beyond these established connections, God has a way of bringing people into your path to whom you can share the gospel
Go ahead. Get out of the boat. Take a risk. Ask God to use you to share the good news with at least one person who does not know Jesus. Don’t be afraid of what you do not know. Tell someone about who Jesus is and he did on the cross to pay for sins. Testify about how the good news has changed your life.
Point the lost to the word of God, and leave the results in the hands of God. If you get the message from your mouth to their ears, God can get it from their ears to their hearts.
Holy Week – along with Mother’s Day and Christmas – are times when many unchurched people are more open to receiving an invitation to church. Why not take advantage of this opportunity to invite an unsaved or unchurched friend to church for Easter?
Pray for the Easter preparations at your church. Pray your church’s planning and working to make the celebration of the resurrection will be special. Pray Christ will be lifted up. Pray the saving work of Christ be presented clearly and faithfully.
But don’t just pray for your church. Partner with it. Your church is providing “air covering” for you during Holy Week. Do the “ground work” of inviting a lost person to join you for church on Easter.
There are some church traditions that bid us to approach Holy Week with solemnity, even sorrow. There is definitely a place for this. After all, it was our sins that put the Lord Jesus on the cross.
But that is the good news. Jesus died on the cross. He was buried. But that is not the end of the story. Jesus died. But he did not stay dead. God raised him from the dead. Jesus is alive and well today! He is seated at the right hand of God the Father in glory. All things have been placed under his feet. Jesus holds the key to death, hell, and the grave!
If you have trusted Christ for salvation, you are in him! You share in his victory! You have been buried with Christ in baptism and raised by the glory of the Father to walk in the newness of the life. Celebrate Easter!
What are your plans for making the most of Holy Week? Join the conversation in the comments section.