A Musing Pastor
Good news is most welcome after hearing bad news. I can claim that truth in my own life and perhaps you can as well. For instance, when my parents left this earth, it was and still is a painful reminder of our brevity of life.
On the other side of those two life-altering events I have come to a place of peace in knowing that one died of a major heart attack and was most likely dead before they hit the ground. The other apparently died in their sleep. Dad and Mom were faithful believers and followers of Jesus and that truth alone has brought much peace to me as I have struggled to move forward with hope.
Our current state of affairs appear bleak and at times a somber darkness creeps in amongst us to invade our peace and try to rob us of our hope and joy. Don't allow it! The following passage from John 14 is a go to for me when things seem bleak. Hopefully it may bring some rest to your weariness today. Take a look!
Jesus the Way to the Father
1 Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And you know the way to the place where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”...
...25 “I have said these things to you while I am still with you.26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you.27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. (John 14:1-7, 25-27 - NRSV) (Bold emphasis added)
The pandemic of which we are stuck in carries with it a peace stealing, hope crushing, and a sight blinding illness of spiritual proportions. The disciples had just listened to their master, rabbi, and spiritual leader reveal his death and going away from them. They wondered what his words meant. They posed unspoken questions in their minds. Then as Jesus offered heart and soul care for the disciples in verses 1-4, Thomas verbalized (in verse 5) what most of the others were thinking. Fair question from one who seemed to think and process things a little deeper than the others.
I love the response from Jesus to Thomas and to the group (us too!). I am the way. Follow me! I am the truth. Believe me! I am the life. Live in me! In these three areas one can claim a great deal of peace and hope and when we do then nothing can creep in and steal them. Romans 8 is an oft quoted text when terrible times threaten us. Nothing, I repeat, nothing can separate us from the love God when we are in Christ Jesus!!
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39, NRSV)
Remain in Jesus and all that hovers around us will surely fade
away as the light and love of God shines in.