Going Deeper 12.14.2020
An excerpt from yesterday's message...

This is the most difficult stretch I have experienced in my lifetime… which in part shows how good I have had it my whole life. But the loved ones of nearly 300,000 of our fellow countrymen are mourning their loss to the COVID-19 crisis, and many othersincluding members of our church familyhave suffered greatly with the infection. And, as we know, the impact on our economy has been devastating, with record numbers of people losing jobs and businesses.

Add to that the horrific wildfires of 2020… and here in mid-December California is still very much in danger of seeing more fires. And our country continues through a time of political and social turmoil that hasn’t been seen in many generations, causing relational damage impacting families, friendships, and churches, and leaving our United States far from united. I am not about to minimize the fact that these are dark times indeed… especially for those who have added physical, relational, and emotional setbacks on top of all these other hardships.

It is into this—and every— dark setting that Paul speaks these words: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” In the midst of our struggles, in the midst of our fear, and in the midst of all of the uncertainties, we can “Rejoice always” because of the truth that the Light of the world has come, as John proclaims in our Gospel: “The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. … to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.”

With You in His Peace,
 
Mark Gabbert, Pastor
Zion Lutheran Church, Wellington
 
"Gratefully Growing Servants"