The Pastor's Peace - March, 2010
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As I write this month's Pastor's Peace, the weather channel is forecasting more snow. Oh, how I look forward to March, the beginning of Spring, and, if I am lucky, the end of snow. Don't get me wrong-there are good things about snow. Some people make their living removing snow. Snow helps replenish ground water. Snow is pretty and can be fun to play in. In fact, Amelia has been so happy this winter, because she missed the snow from Boston, and, well, now we have it here in Dayton, too.

Sure the snow can be great, but boy can it be headache as well. From the difficulties of digging your car out, to slipping on ice every time you take a walk, to just plain being a hassle to walk through. I have had several church members say that they simply don't come out when it snows. It can even be blamed for a decline in the stock market. Apparently consumer confidence was down for February, which some believe was because of all the snow. Who would have thought that something could ruin my shoes and my retirement account all at once?

Such a dual role snow has. Good to some and horrible to others. Snow, however, is not unique in being both good and bad at the same time. There are many things in life that we look upon one way or another depending on our situation.
Sometimes our faith in God falls in that category as well. There are times when we praise God for the wonderful things in our life, or the inspiration and strength God gives us. Other times we are mad at God, we regret something that has happened, or blame God for the great injustices of the World. What I try to remember in those times is that like snow, God has no intention of causing us grief and strife.

Snow does not fall with the intention of causing chaos on the highway. In reality it is we who cause the chaos. We build homes far from work, drive cars everyplace, and yet get frustrated when nature does something it has done for millions of years. Perhaps if we planned for nature better, we would be less frustrated. In the same way, God has given us life, given us free will, and given us the intellect to know God on a personal level. Yet we are frustrated when God does not control everything as we would like it. Part of life is death, and part of free will is the understanding that some will make the wrong decisions. This will always be the case, but we can plan better for it. We can focus on the beauty of the life we have; we can encourage those around us to make good choices. If we all focus on the beauty of God's creation, then perhaps the difficulties won't seem so severe. As we journey through Lent this season, let us not get too depressed about all that is wrong, but may we rather rejoice in the gift we have from God to make it better.

Peace and Blessings,
Pastor Brian