Not everything is lost

I haven’t written anything in a long time because there was nothing that I wanted to say.

Being busy was part of it, but mainly I was discouraged. And I guess there were things I wanted to say, but they essentially boiled down to a grumpy old man on the porch wagging his finger at the world and admonishing it to get off his lawn.

It feels like things are changing rapidly, and not for the better. It would be easy to be so worried about the world our kids will inherit that we retreat to a fortress of solitude. And guard our lawns.

And yet, not everything is lost. Patriots and heroes may be harder to come by, and maligned by many when they show up, but they still exist. There is good in the world, if I would quit nagging long enough to take the time to look.

A couple of weeks ago I saw my son’s friend and three other young men inducted as Eagle Scouts, an institution that still celebrates hard work, sacrifice, bravery, and community service.

My Mom has a neighbor who walks every morning before daylight to take the neighborhood’s papers from the end of the sidewalk to the front door.

When I taught Sunday School to the middle-schoolers two weeks ago, a seventh-grader took the time to thank me for the lesson.

Pork chops are on sale at Publix.

And last weekend, my wife and I got to get away with friends to see the foliage and watch football.

Behold, I am making all things new. Rev. 21:5

The red and gold leaves at our get-away reminded me that there is beauty in change. Fall may lead to winter, but the spring will follow. “So too, at the present time there is a remnant chosen by grace.” Rom. 11:5.

The world is changing, but God is not, and neither has our calling. A calling to love others, to be part of a community, and to be joyful.

There is an awful lot that is wrong in the world, and there will be until it is made new. I can’t fix that. There is another problem closer to home, and it is my attitude. My refusal at times to see the good that still is, and to remember that the end of the story is already written.

I’ll work on it. In the meanwhile, turn the music down, get a haircut, and stay off my lawn.

Why did you go to church this morning?

for where two or three come togetherWhy did you go to church this morning?

___  Someone made me

___  So I wouldn’t feel guilty

___  Habit

___  To show off new clothes

___  I dig the music

___  To see my friends

___  Donuts

___  It fits with the image I have made for myself

___  If I go often enough, I’ll go to Heaven

___  If I go often enough, God will love me

___  To recharge for the week

___  Because I love the pastor

___  Because I love the church

___  Because I love God

___  The church is the Body of Christ, and the Body will not work as well with missing parts

___  To hear and study the Word

___  To grow in Christ

___  To fellowship with the family of God

___  Because it is commanded

___  To encourage others

___  To be encouraged

___  To worship with fellow believers

___  To support the mission work of the church

___  As part of giving my time and resources to God

___  There is nowhere else I’d rather be

Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25

And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-12

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:42

Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you. Hebrews 13:17

Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16


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