A HARD BUT HOPEFUL WEEK
David Baker - Worship Pastor
Kenneth, Greg, Lois, and Bro. Raymond - This is a sad week.
We have lost friends and loved ones before, but we’re in the middle of a week where we lost four of our friends and family: Kenneth Bales, Greg Bostic, Lois Hinderliter, and Bro. Raymond McDowell.
This is indeed a sad week. But this is a joyous week as well!
Each one of these loved ones knew Jesus as their personal Savior! They’re celebrating with Jesus right now, and are enjoying the blessings of Heaven, living life in its richest fullness that we can’t even dream of! They are experiencing no more pain, no more sorrow or sadness, no more worries and cares of this life!
They are also experiencing a reunion with friends and family that have gone on before! Folks who have been waiting patiently for their arrival into the true promised land, where the streets are paved with gold, and their mansions have been prepared just for them (John 14:2)! Kenneth, Greg, Lois, and Bro. Raymond are experiencing firsthand the promises of God that has been finally given to them. And can’t you hear the Father saying to each of them, “Well done, good and faithful servant!”? (Matt.25:23)
The Bible gives us many assurances that this life is not all there is:
John 3:16 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (KJV)
And John 10:28 – “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.” (NIV)
But one of my favorite passages that speaks of the promise of Heaven and our great reunion with our loved ones comes from the Old Testament. In 2 Samuel, King David is in sackcloth and ashes praying earnestly that God would heal his sick child that came from his affair with Bathsheba. When God did not heal him but allowed the child to die, David responds to his servants, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, ‘Who knows? The Lord may be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I go on fasting? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me.” (2 Samuel 12:22-23 NIV)
We can rest assured that this is not “Good-bye” but “we’ll see you later!” Rest in this promise and enjoy the memories until we see them again! For that day is certain!
Because HE lives!