Tuesday, November 28, 2006

St. Andrew, November 30

On Thursday, November 30th, the Church celebrates the festival of St. Andrew. He was not one of the prominent disciples, and yet, his faithfulness and dedication to Jesus, and his desire to bring others to Jesus is to be imitated. During the Wednesday nights of Advent, I am doing a thematic on the "Saints of God." This Wednesday night's sermon will be on St. Andrew.

The prayer listed for the festival of St. Andrew leads us to Jesus, "Almighty God, by whose grace the blessed apostle Saint Andrew obeyed the call of your Son Jesus Christ, grant us also to follow him in heart and life; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever."

Victory Over Death!

On Sunday, I traveled to Delafield, Wisconsin, to be present at a graveside service on Monday for a former member of St. John's, Craig Peters. He and his wife were currently living in Kansas, where his wife was finishing her residency program. Craig passed away suddenly at the age of 48. He leaves behind a wife, Beth, and two boys, Will and Daniel. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Peters family at their time of loss. But, certainly as believers in Christ, we do not mourn without hope.

St. Paul had the Peters family in mind, and all of us when he wrote in 1 Thessalonians 4, starting at verse 13, "Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage each other with these words."

May God, again, bless the Peters family as they deal with this change in their lives.