Death is not what God intended.
You may never know the great power that a simple word of love can have on a person, but I encourage you to share love with others. It will never leave my memory. Though a lot of time has passed through the years, the memory of a mentor’s words at a critical time in my life will never fade.
This morning, as I kindle the fire upon my hearth, I pray the flame of God’s love may burn in my heart, and the heart of all I meet today.
“From very early on Christians buried their dead near their places of worship. Where others placed their dead outside of cities and avoided such sites, Christians often celebrated the anniversaries of the death of their martyrs with the Lord’s Supper. Oftentimes this celebration was held at the place where the martyr was buried. Soon, many churches included the bones of the martyrs within the church building. Since death was not the final word about our bodily existence, it didn’t need to be something fearful. Christians understood that to be absent from the body was to be present with the Lord and there was no place where the Lord was more present than in the community gathered for worship. The understanding was that in Christ all are one.”
“Jesus Christ wants you to glow – not just to see his light, not just to talk about the light of God, not just to reflect his light, but to be transformed into light.”
“Sometimes we do not prepare ourselves for aging; we are uncomfortable, perhaps, thinking about the unknown, or fearing it. We fear a picture of aging that we paint for ourselves in which we look unrecognizable in the mirror, face an obsolete existence and are marginalized from the “real action” of living. But that great inspirer of John Wesley, Bishop Jeremy Taylor, counsels us: “let us prepare our minds against changes, always expecting them, that we be not surprised when they come.” Curiously, this excellent advice comes in the middle of his discussion on contentedness. “
Here is a reality check as we move forward from the Christmas event: Mary may have been the first Godbearer. She may have been the ultimate Godbearer. But if you are in relationship with Jesus Christ, then you are a Godbearer too. Everyone who follows in the Jesus way is called to be a Godbearer. That is a huge part of what it means to follow Jesus – bearing God to others.