Bible Verse of the Day

1 Corinthians 15:55-57
“?Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?? The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

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AYP October 2014

Grace, mercy and peace be with you. Amen.

Well I have to say that I have learned a valuable lesson this past month. One I suppose that I always knew, but was seriously reinforced. As many of you are aware, my Dad has been in the hospital the past month with issues with his heart. He was placed on the heart transplant list, and then removed, he has had procedure after procedure in order to get the A-Fib that he has under control.

The lesson that I learned is just how important family is. I know, you are all saying well yea…. Why didn’t you know that already pastor? But I did know that, and what I am going on about now is how one talks about family, and how one identifies who their family is.

I am not from PA, and I have no family here in PA other than my wife and kids, but the outpouring of support from friends has been outstanding. And it has caused me to realize something that I always knew, but seldom acknowledged. That, friends are family as well. We may not be related by birth, but we are related in that we are brothers and sisters in Christ.

In a time when the world is full of chaos, violence, uncertainty, hatred, mistrust, and so on, it is nice to know that there is a family that is there for you when you need it. Even if they are not directly your mother, father, brother or sister. We are a family here at St. John’s Lutheran Church. And with that goes all that families have, the crazy dysfunctional families that we all have, are all right here as well. We have the crazy brother, the arrogant sister, the shy mother, the domineering father, whatever, we have it all. And although you may not like what some of them are doing some of the time, we still love them all of the time.

I know that there are the fights that occur in families, and often that finds it way here into the church, were people don’t want to talk to others, or even mention their name, but when it comes right down to it, we still love them. I know that my sister and I don’t always get along, or agree on matters, but she is my sister, and I am always there to help and support her. I will say that there are times that I am happy that she is in Arizona, and not around the corner, but there are also times when I miss her, and wish that she were closer.
When it comes down to it, we all want the same things - to be happy and at peace with who we are, what we are doing, and to celebrate what Christ has done for us. For me, I know that I am thankful that I have Christ in my life, as well as in the life of my family. And I am thankful for all those that I call family, whether we are related by blood or not, we are all one in Christ.

Amen.

Peace, Pastor Paul D. Hansen