Tuesday, July 05, 2016

An anniversary, a birthday, and longing

On June 21, I celebrated my sixth anniversary as the pastor of Cornerstone Church.

On July 4th, my dad would have turned 66.

The first date was one of reflective joy. In 6 years, I've seen God's hand at work in my life and others. I've learn so much above love, forgiveness, and perseverance from the saints and sinners of Cornerstone Church.  I've learned more from them than anything I've taught. A local church proclaiming Jesus Christ is the hope of the world; it's been a place of hope for me.

The second date was a heavy day. I was surrounded by smiles, laughter, fireworks, and fun, but the gravity of my father's absence kept me from fully entering into the delight of the day. I wanted to send Dad a birthday text. I wanted to give him a call. I wanted to hear what he shot in the 4th of July golf tournament. But he's not here. Please don't throw the "you'll always have your memories" card at me. He's not here. It hurts. I'm not going to jump off a bridge, but I think it's a form of honoring another person when a special day comes around and you grieve. Sure, it can be unnecessary martyrdom or self-mutilation. But I think there's a healthy form of grief that does stick around for people. For some it never goes away. For others it lessens over the years.

Both dates created in me longings...

1) A longing to be a faithful shepherd today and for the years to come.
2) A longing for Christ's return, the meeting of those asleep in Christ with those still alive at Christ's coming.
3) A longing to be in the final family, where death no longer separates and sin no longer invades.

Come Lord Jesus.