Our church has been hit rather hard this month with the passing of two longtime and respected members of our congregation.
Christy Rickard, was the chair of our Membership Care committee, and she really embraced that role, reaching out to those in need and making everyone who entered our doors feel welcome.
Arden Boyer was born into this church and served on just about every board and committee imaginable. Like Christy, he was greatly loved, admired, and appreciated.
But now, as we head into a new month, the realization that both are gone — at least in a physical sense — is quite sobering. We miss both of them very much, and although we know that others in our congregation will step forward to serve the way that they did, those two will never be replaced and certainly never forgotten.
So what do we do with this unavoidable presence of physical death? It always seems to be lurking, regardless of one’s age, and we know that tomorrow is promised to no one.
Well, I think we can take a cue from Christy and Arden in terms of the way that they lived their lives and prepared for the glory of the eternal life to come for those who believe.
Christy and Arden lived each day to the fullest, but more importantly, they lived each day for the Lord, dedicating themselves to his service, knowing that they could be called home at any time.
This month as we honor them, we also contemplate our next move, and we can certainly take a cue from them in terms of the way they prepared for God’s call and listened for guidance through His Holy Word.
Those passages include the first eight verses from Psalm 121, which states, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains, where does my help come from? My help comes from the lord, the maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip, he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you, the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, or the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm; he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forever more.”
And, of course, further inspiration comes from the first six verses from the 14th chapter of the Gospel of John, which brings consolation and affirmation: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God;believe also in me.My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
God has a plan, and as believers we have a prominent place in that plan, so let us not fear death as the end but embrace it as a new beginning in our faith journey.
Until We Meet Again, Be Blessed! – Pastor John