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Because He Lives

13April2012

“I believe in the resurrection.” Not in a manner of speaking, but as a matter of fact. I know that’s not original or witty or whatever, but its all I’ve got right now. In a few minutes, I’ll make the three hour drive north to begin the process of cleaning out my aunt’s house. Aunt “Pete”, who raised me from age two after my mom died of cancer, was killed in a car crash this past November. Which means that my family of origin is in heaven now. All that’s left is a house full of memories, which I must deal with as the executor of the estate. 

 

Three months before my wife and I were installed as mission planters for Genesis Church, Aunt Pete had asked a neighbor to watch her dog so that she could attend our February installation. She would have been there in the front row this past Sunday at our first worship service, too, to celebrate Easter with us. 

 

Between our recent move and starting a church, and helping our daughter apply for colleges, and the IRS blessing us with our first tax audit, I haven’t had much time to grieve (did I mention that I preached her memorial service?). So the emotions hit me during the first hymn, as I stood in front of our fledgling congregation on Sunday. “Because he lives, I can face tomorrow,” we sang. “Because he lives, all fear is gone. Because I know he holds the future…”  It’s funny the things that come to mind during worship. I’m the elder in my family now. There’s no one to call for advice, to share my joy with, to lean on in difficult times. My family and I are alone.

 

Then it was time for us to confess our faith. “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, and the life everlasting.”  This is a practical theology rooted in hope. It means that God is upholding us through the prayers and presence of His people, through the bread of life and the cup of blessing, through the precious promises of His Holy Word. And we are not alone.

 

I believe in the resurrection. Not in a manner of speaking, but as a matter of fact. I know that’s not original or witty or whatever, but its all I’ve got right now as I get in my car to make the three hour drive. And it is enough.

 

JAM@CCD

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