Monday, March 29, 2010

Life Goes On, Regardless

This past week, I learned that one of our young adults in church is about to become engaged. His sister is already engaged and preparing for her wedding later this summer. Two young people from one family preparing for marriage at the same time. I said I was thrilled for them and I am. Sort of.
I can't help feeling a bit wistful as I watch two outstanding young people prepare to move on with their lives. Sure, it's exciting and I am happy to know they've met the right people for their lives. No doubt, God answered prayer and that's a wonderful thing. But I also know that quality people are hard to replace - really, really hard - and these two are going to be missed profoundly.
As happy as I am to see them moving on, I can't help feeling sad that they are indeed moving on. But that's life, and life is always moving. No matter what we do, we can't keep things the way they are. Life is going to move on regardless of how much we try to hold it in place. Kids grow up, get married and move on. Church members come and go. People age. Grand kids have the audacity to arrive and then grow up before you know it. (I've discovered to my chagrin that our grandchildren have found a way to grow up faster than our own kids.)
The simple, stark truth that life is going to go on means there is no such thing as reaching a point where we can just "put it on cruise,"certainly not in church. The surest way to kill a church is to do nothing. It will grow up, grow old, die and disappear all on its own. We who inhabit the pulpit on Sunday morning do not have the luxury of waiting until tomorrow to build the church. The problem is not, as some people think, that tomorrow never comes. The truth is that tomorrow comes too often, too soon and too quickly.
I do not want to reach the end of my ministry and wish I had my tomorrows back.

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