We have had a couple of body blows here at St. Paul’s. We were so blessed to spend three years with Pastor Doug. We trust in God’s plan for him, but it is hard to see him go.
Our prayers for Pastor Eric to be cancer-free have also hit a bump in the road.
Did you see the story of Dave Marques in Mt. Zion? On the way to a Cardinals game, he stopped in Raymond, IL, and on the spur of the moment, bought a lottery ticket. He won $1 million. We contrast that to the recent news of a 12-year-old boy in Mt. Pulaski who lost his life in a tragic accident.
Some people will say that there can’t be a God, for what God would be this mean, that some people would be so lucky and others would be so unlucky.
Jim Minton is currently leading an F3 class entitled “People Know How to Sin,” that is based on a book he has written. It includes 13 principles to help you improve your kids and yourself.
Principle #11 is: “Don’t lose heaven when you are going through hell.” It starts with John 16:33, “I have told you this so that you will have peace by being united to me. The world will make you suffer. But be brave! I have defeated the world!" (GNT)
The entire chapter is attached for you to read, but one of Jim’s main points is that most of us have times when we question God. We say that if we were God, we would do it differently.
It would be wonderful if God’s plan was for Pastor Doug to stay and Pastor Eric to be healthy. But God has given us a different road to follow.
The chapter talks about many stories in the Bible where God tested people. To summarize, there is Heaven. There is hell. There is earth, with a little bit of both. We can’t lose heaven when we are going through hell.
Jim closes with 2 Timothy 4:7, where Paul says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.”
Keep fighting, Pastor Doug. Keep fighting, Pastor Eric. Keep fighting, people of St. Paul’s. Our best days are still ahead of us. Especially those days when we are in Heaven.