Forever 09/23/22

I recently learned of the death of an old classmate and friend. The summer after my sophomore year in high school, we moved from a small town in northern Wisconsin to Kansas City. When I found out that we were moving, I bought an autograph book and tried to track down as many of my friends as I could. Gary was one of those who signed my book. He concluded his remarks by writing, “friend forever.” That was almost sixty years ago. That was also the last time we saw one another. In spite of our best intentions, that was really good-bye.

As we get older, we discover that in this life “forever” doesn’t last very long. It seems that one minute we are young, and suddenly our children and our grandchildren are grown. We pledge undying love, “till death us do part,” and yet learn that sometimes, in the words of an old song, “Too many moonlight kisses seem to cool in the warmth of the sun.” As we get older, we see that too frequently death claims family members and friends. We are thus frequently reminded of our own mortality.

In a world that is constantly changing, we often long for other times as we seek to hold on to something secure and lasting from our youth, but nothing stays the same, nothing lasts.

We desire something that will remain constant, something that will not fail or grow old. If we listen, if we read the scriptures, we hear, “For I the Lord do not change.” We read “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” The Lord does not change. He alone is constant. “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge.”

God says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” “I have loved you with an everlasting love.” On the cross, we see the ultimate demonstration of God’s love for us. In the empty tomb we rejoice in His victory over death, a victory that He shares with His own. It is in Christ that all our hopes and dreams and longings are fulfilled. It is in Him alone that we find “forever.”

Pastor Haney

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