The Pastor's Peace - September, 2018
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As summer is coming to an end, I find myself reflecting back on the last several months. There were many happy events, like VACATION (just kidding.) There were indeed some great things like baptizing Clyde, Luau Sunday, the bike stop, and the nice party for Byron and Anne, to name a few. Unfortunately there were things hard to deal with as well, such as all of the funerals I performed this summer. Sadly, we have lost several church members and family members over the last number of months. In fact, I have performed at least one funeral a month, sometimes two, since March of this year. I am hoping and praying that the months ahead will bring a break from mourning those whom we have lost, but we are never in control of such things.

Funerals are something we don’t really like talking about. We are happy to talk about weddings, baptisms, celebrations, and positive visions of the future, but funerals are not something we tend to bring up, even though they are an important part of the church, perhaps the most important. Every time we face the loss of a loved one, we face the cross, and know the sting of death. One option is to ignore it, certainly a popular one; the other, however, is to let these signs of the cross remind us of the resurrection to come. We do a great number of things at church, but at the heart of it all is the faith that we have salvation and life eternal in Christ. Every time we come together in loss, we come together to mourn, but we also come together to understand the reality of death and deepen our faith in a life after this one.

Christ did many things during his ministry: he helped the poor, he healed the sick, and he included those that others had cast out, but most of all he brought the Good News. The beginning of the earliest gospel written, Mark, starts with talk from the prophets that speaks of a messenger that is sent by God to lead us forward. That messenger is Christ, and the place we are being led is eternal salvation. That is the Good News. We no longer need to fear death, for in Christ we share in the resurrection, and no cross is ever the end. In the moment of loss, it is hard to remember these things, but as we all reflect over the last many months, let us remember the faith we have, and let that faith guide us from sadness to hope, and from hope to joy, joy that all of us will be connected eternally in Christ, and that nothing can ever take that from us.

Peace and Blessings,
Pastor Brian