January 30, 2019

Wow, it is a little on the cold side today here in Northwest Ohio.  I am so glad that we have global warming. Can you imagine how cold it would be if we didn’t? I hope that all of you are staying warm wherever you are at.  If you need a warm place or know of someone that does, we have space at the church. The office will be open during these cold days from 8-4. If anyone needs to have a warm place outside of those hours, please call one of the pastors.

 This past weekend we were at a family gathering celebrating my parents 80th birthdays, and their 60th anniversary. Everyone was present except for 4 nephews and their families.  It was good to connect with everyone and to hear what is happening in each other’s lives.  While we were gathering, my friend’s family, the Dean Beachy family was gathering for a different reason.  They were gathering and reminiscing as well, but they were reminiscing about two lives that had been lived and were now gone.  I was reminded how quickly life can end.

 I sat and pondered the meaning of life and wondered how it happens that some lose life in some situations and some people don’t.  I thought about the frailty of life and the many challenges that life brings our way.  I wish I could understand it all and explain it all, but I can’t.  But what I do know is that God has a master plan and I need to trust him.  I was reminded often this weekend how easily my life could be over.  Except for a God that has a larger plan for me.  There is no explanation for the glass turning the bullet, it was simply a God moment.  I often don’t feel worthy and wish I could say that I have made the most of every opportunity, but I know I haven’t. I confess that I make mistakes and am so thankful for God’s grace and forgiveness.  I am also thankful for the many times I have been forgiven from all of you.  I also ask that if I have offended or hurt anyone that you will tell me and allow me to ask for forgiveness.

 We don’t understand senseless random shootings and probably never will.  But they can be a reminder to all of us how quick life can be gone.  It also reminds me to pray for those that are hurting and to be more intentional to listen and walk alongside those that are hurting. The family of Dean and Stevie will make it.  They know and have a relationship with Jesus Christ. They have a community around them that will walk with them. They will have some challenging days and have a lot of challenges to work through.  It was very telling about their faith when they asked people to pray for the family of the perpetrator.

 This past week Pastor Dan talked about the care that God has for us and that he invites us to grow in our relationship with Him. This coming week we will be looking at what it means to praise God. You can read Psalm 98 in preparation.  All of creation is called to praise God for what?  This morning when I went outside to chore and take care of my animals, I was reminded of how blessed I am.  I have a warm house, a warm garage, and a barn that keeps my animals comfortable. I could go on and on about all that I have to be thankful for, but the Psalmist in chapter 98 says that I have one reason to praise God.

 So, yes, it is cold outside. But, the sun is shining. The buildings are warm. We have much to be thankful for. But most of all we should be thankful for_____________!

 I pray that you have an awesome day!

 Find ways to enjoy it!

 Blessings!

 Pastor Glenn

North Clinton Church