Is it November already? My heart and my body suggest to me that it should still be July or August. I long for the warm days and especially the warm mornings when I could take my coffee and reading materials to the front porch to bask in the glory of God’s creation. But, alas, the calendar doesn’t lie, does it? So…November, here we come! Like it or not!
As I sit here in the church office this morning, I’m watching the beautiful maple trees being removed from the front yard of the parsonage. We’ve known for months that this day was coming. Still, knowledge didn’t prepare me for the reality that is here. Just seems to make the melancholy even more profound as I grieve the passing of warm weather and watch the removal of our beautiful shade trees in the yard.
And then I think of the heartache we see in the lives of so many of our friends and neighbors. A dear friend shared with me recently that he had lost over $300,000 in the past year from his retirement accounts. I could see the concern on his face as he shared. All of us who are nearing retirement can’t help but be concerned for what the future holds.
I am also concerned for so much sickness in the lives of our friends and loved ones. It seems we hear of more and more cancer diagnoses with each passing day. Chemo, radiation, immuno-therapy- those words, and more besides, sound so serious. And THEY ARE SERIOUS! And then what about covid? Just when we think it is subsiding, it pops up again. Fortunately, recent covid sicknesses do not seems to be as serious as they were months ago. Still, it’s troubling, isn’t it? And we could go on and on, couldn’t we? What will be the next new virus, bug, or sickness that comes along? I do not know. You do not know. Only God knows.
On and on we could go- sharing the troubles, trials, tribulations, and problems we hear about each day from those we love and care about. They just seem endless, don’t they? If we are not careful, we could let it all just cause us to slide into profound depression. So, where do we go for comfort and assurance that everything is going to be okay?
Well, I’m reminded today of an old hymn. Many years ago, I played piano for an African-American singing group from Sparta. I’ve shared that, many times, I was the only white boy in the house. And that was okay! I loved it! Those sweet people treated me like their brother, and I loved them dearly. Several of them have now gone on to be with the Lord. One of the songs they sang was “Where Could I Go, But to the Lord!” My oh my, they could rock that old song. But today, the words of that song bring peace and comfort to my soul once again during these troublesome times. Truly, God still brings peace, comfort, and assurance that, no matter what troubles and trials we face down here, we always have Him- even when all other sources of comfort are gone.
Living Below in This Old Sinful World,
Hardly A Comfort Can Afford;
Striving Alone to Face Temptations Sore,
Where Could I Go but to the Lord?
Where Could I Go, O Where Could I Go?
Seeking A Refuge for My Soul?
Needing A Friend to Help Me in The End,
Where Could I Go but to the Lord?
May God again bring His peace and comfort to these difficult days in which we live. The month of November includes that wonderful day of Thanksgiving! As we indulge in all our favorite Thanksgiving dishes, let us remember that we can go to Him anywhere and anytime!
In Christ, Pastor Tim