Sunday, December 16, 2012

Where is God?

The recent tragic loss of Caleb Frances, a young aspiring pastor killed in a train accident in India, coupled with the unfathomable tragdy of Newton, Connecticut resulting in the death of twenty-six innocent victimes, can't help but conjure up questions for me of God's whereabouts in such horrific events.

Of course, I am a pastor, and I have all the answers,,,?  I should, I suppose, be insulated from the quandry of such questioning but my human instinct is to try to make sense of the enignmatic. 

Jogn Frances, Caleb's father, has started 103 chuirches in India and his son was prepared to assume the leadership of a congregation.  What purpose could be served by his death?

Twenty six and seven year olds--their lives ahead of them--ruthlessly slaughtered.  How are there families to process such tragedy and what purposeful "good" can emerge from a catastrophe of such immense proportion?

And six adults--teachers--entrusted with the care of their classroom  children--sacrificing their own lives for their safety--how shall their families deal with their absence every succeeding Christmas season?

For these situations, and countless others like them, answers--if they were forthcoming--would not mute the pain or diminish the loss.  Our focus should be on  healing and wholeness as these families move forward in time, a process that will span the years ahead.

Along the way we hope that they will find comfort and strength from God, who did not stand idly by, but in allowing man free will, afforded them the opportunity to choose good and evil.  Sadly, we are all impacted by the choices we individually make, and those made by others.  The challenge is to know God and to seek to engage His strength and wisdom and to make choices that impact our world for ultimate good. 

The choice for us today is to reject cycnicism and bitterness and to choose instead to pray for those who are hurting and to affirm our faith in God's promise of grace for each day.,,in India, and in Newton.

Monday, December 03, 2012


Mondays have always been a day of rest for me.  Following Sunday with  all of its attedant responsibilities as a senior pastor, Monday always beckoned me with its promise of rest and relaxation.  It didn't always work that well, but, generally, it was a needed break from my regimen of work.

Of course, I'm retiring, and, in fact, have seen a  drastic reduction of my responsibilties at Grace as transition is going full speed ahead.  I am already learning that Mondays look different than they used to.  I am being graciously allowed time to go through books and files, meet with families, and to be with the people of Grace as time allows.

I was thinking this morning, however, of how a creature of habit I have become.  Mondays for me, I guess, will always be Mondays!

Today, as usual, I laid in bed a few minutes, longer; as usual I drank coffee and sat around with Bev lounging.  As usual, we made arrangements to be away from the house--this time to do Christmas shopping.  As usual we ate lunch away from home--today we enjoyed a gift certificate at Olive Garden.

And tonight, I am on the computer--as usual--thinking about tomorrow, and the rest of the week.

Mondays are still Mondays, I'm discovering.

It's the rest of the week that's different.