It's September 1st, 2012. Summer is not officially over, but it's close. Tomorrow is September 2nd and Monday is Labor Day, September 3rd. Then school starts and really, in spite of what the calendar says, summer is over! So why the lament over summer ending? It's not really a lament, more an observation of the passing of the seasons. Next Sunday, September 9th, is my 62nd birthday. It doesn't seem possible that I will be 62, but I counted and that's the reality of it. At 62 you can look back over a lot of things. I just looked at some pictures on Facebook of my grand-daughters visiting their grandma and grandpa and cousins in Volga, South Dakota. I served First Reformed Church there for seven years and have many fond memories of the years there. Yes, at 62 you have a lot of memories.
But at 62 you also have to make a decision whether to focus on what is past or on what is present and what is future. While I cherish the memories and thank God for all that is past, the future beckons with promises of fruitful ministry and opportunities to share the hope of the Gospel with those who have not yet heard and those who need to hear it again. I think of the words of the old hymn, "I Love to Tell the Story." "I love to tell the story, for those who know it best seem hungering and thirsting, to hear it like the rest." The Gospel of Jesus Christ truly is the greatest story ever told, for it is true and has the power to give hope and peace and joy like no other message on the face of the earth.
So, this "blogger" is committing to something I've tried since starting this blog: writing an entry every day! It seems like a big task, and what do I have to say that is so important? Actually, it is GOD who has something to say and I sense His call to share His Word daily to encourage those who read, to answer questions, to proclaim His truth. In the past I have written on certain topics and my blogs have gotten ... well, LONG! So I'm going to try to keep them shorter, at least most of the time, so you don't have to set aside an hour to read them!
As I begin a new sermon series tomorrow, "Thy Kingdom Come," there is no more important topic than God's kingdom. Jesus said, "the kingdom of God is in your midst." One day - heaven ... until then, God says, "Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory" (Colossians 3:1-4).
With God's help, this is how I want to live the rest of my life; and as He enables, I hope to be an instrument in His hands to help you to do the same. After all, "a blog is only as good as its blogger." I hope to be better, more faithful to the task of using this medium to glorify God and to encourage His children. It's part of my calling; part of who I am in Him.
May God fill you with His grace and love in Christ Jesus, Pastor Steve