December 28 Pastor’s Note
by Abiding Love
Abiding Love Midweek Message
Luke 2:36-38 — There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
Does her life seem lonely to you? This woman named Anna who was there the day the baby Jesus was presented at the temple? It’s easy to read about Anna and focus on who wasn’tthere. She had no husband. Luke writes that her husband died after 7 years of marriage, which means she had been a widow for most of her life. You don’t hear about kids or grandkids. Her parents, her siblings, her childhood friends were probably all gone. It sounds like the only people in her life were the people she saw at the temple as she worshipped, fasted, and prayed day and night.
Can you imagine? Imagine life without the people mentioned just a moment ago. Imagine life without your parents, your kids, your brothers, your sisters, your friends, your neighbors, your grandparents, your aunts and uncles. Some of the greatest gifts God gives us are our human relationships and so losing those relationships hurts.
But even without all these relationships we value so much, Anna was never alone –and neither are you. Because we have a God who comes to us. That day in the temple, Son of God came to Anna as a baby. The creator of the universe was cradled in Simeon’s arms! He was there so that we would never be alone. In life and in death, we have a God who is with us because Jesus came to redeem us. He became a human child so that he could pay the price our sin deserves with his death on the cross and so he would remove the sin that separates us from God.
Today God is still a God who comes to us. He came to you in the waters of your baptism. He comes to you in the quiet whisper of his Word and in the bread and wine of the Lord’s Supper. There God comes to you to make you his child and to keep you his child. There he promises that even if you lose all the human relationships you value most, you are never alone.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we thank you for coming to us in Word and Sacrament and making us your children. We often fail to appreciate our place in your family, yet you came to this world to forgive us for our sins. Help us to remember, no matter how lonely we feel at times, that you never leave our side. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen
Our services this weekend will focus on beginning the new year in the Lord and reflecting on what kind of spiritual changes we would like to make for the new year.
Saturday evening service resumes this week at 5:30pm. Being New Year’s weekend, this might be a great option for anyone planning festivities.
Please note many new upcoming activities:
Saturday — teen fishing / beach excursion
January 7 — Sunday School and adult Bible study resumes. Adults will begin a series that pulls together a timeline of Jesus’ ministry using the gospel of Mark.
January 10 — Ladies’ circle and Bible study resumes
January 14 — fellowship meal and open forum after church
January 15 — New Bible Basics Course begins
January 21 — Volunteer Dinner
January 26 — Youth and family fun night at church: bonfire
August 13, 2020
August 12, 2020
July 22, 2020