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Palm Sunday: The Middle Child of Church Services
In the church realm, the Easter and Christmas services are always the most chattered about. It’s for good reason since the’re usually a time of influx of new guests that step foot into our churches.
But what about Palm Sunday?
Easter seems to always overshadow Palm Sunday. Like the middle child, Palm Sunday is a service we all know about, but run the risk giving all the hand-me-downs. Sure it’s a special time set apart from most others...but Christmas and Easter get all the accolade.
Here are a few ideas we’ve come across that can help rejuvenate your Palm Sunday and make it more than just the service before Easter.
Think of Palm Sunday as Easter for your inner circle- Easter is busy and can sometimes be hectic with so many volunteers and leaders serving. Use Palm Sunday as an opportunity to have intimate family time either before or after the service. It can be an amazing time of growth and reflection in the calm.
Bless your volunteers- There’s no better Sunday that Palm Sunday to do an “Easter run through”. With so much focus on serving our guests for the following Sunday, Palm Sunday can be a great opportunity to give back to those who serve when you have them all there. A simple gesture of coffee and donuts with a 5 minute “thank you talk” to your volunteers can go a long way by making them feel valued and needed.
Prepare our hearts- Hosanna isn’t just a catchy song, but a deep cry out to God for our salvation. Translated as I “beg you to save”, it makes reading Matthew 21 have new meaning that most churchgoers can miss. “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
The Celebration has already started- Jesus avoided the messianic spotlight throughout his ministry until Palm Sunday. Upon his entry Luke 19 accounts him saying “I tell you,” he replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” Now is the time to celebrate the prince of peace!
Victory is NOW- We don’t have to wait until Easter to celebrate the resurrection. The palm branch represents goodness and the victory that Jesus would have over death. “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” 1 Cor. 15:55
Present the Gospel as you would at Easter- Don’t wait till Easter to give people that extra time to make a decision. Sing a few more chorus’s, play some music longer, give more time for prayer. If victory is now, what better time than to give God the victory in the salvation of His people.
It’s easy to let Palm Sunday creep up on us as we spend time prepping for Easter. Let’s make it great and impact our communities for the Gospel. If we treat Palm Sunday with the same amount of enthusiasm and expectation as we would in Easter, who knows what will happen!