The Pastor's Peace - November, 2017
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I don’t know about you, but for me this past month or so has been very hard to deal with. Between the hurricanes, fires, and the tragedy in Las Vegas, it seems that every time we tune into the world around us we see nothing but grief and despair. I myself am hoping for a bit of calm in November, but one never knows what is around the corner. This is, of course, nothing new. We could look back at the archives of our church, and I’m sure we would find writings concerning tumultuous times, be it the Civil War or WWI and WWII, or any number of calamities and conflicts that have occurred over the past two centuries of our history. As we go back in time before that, we would find many more examples, including the struggles of the early Church.

When the Disciples and early Christians were spreading the Word of Christ they were often severely persecuted. They were harassed or jailed at best, and at worst were executed, sometimes in a gruesome public way to make a point to everyone else. Yet, despite all of this their faith persevered. God through Christ was near to their hearts no matter what the world did around them. This is part of the gift of faith. Faith is not so much checking off the right answers on a quiz, but more so about having a tool to give you hope in the face of despair. No matter what happened, the faith of the early church informed them that nothing on Earth could separate them from Christ.

As we move through the month of November and move into December, we start the season of Advent.—a season that is often overlooked as we rush to malls, Christmas parties, and Santa related holiday cheer. Advent, however, is meaningful and a reminder that the world does contain darkness. The world is often filled with strife and suffering despite our best efforts. In acknowledging the darkness, we make the light of Christ all the more important and meaningful. Here is a light that can never be put out, a light that forever guides us. As we continue on through the year there will almost certainly be something else of great difficulty that occurs either globally or personally. When it does, remember your faith in God through Christ. Hold onto that light and allow it to use you as a vessel to improve our world. Hold onto that light and know that within it lies your eternal salvation. Hold onto that light and know that no darkness, no matter how great, can ever, ever extinguish it.

Peace and Blessings,

Pastor Brian