The Pastor's Thoughts
"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven; A time to be born and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to reap what is planted; A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to break down and time to build up; A time to weep; and a time to laugh; A time to mourn and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; A time to keep and a time to cast away; A time to rend and a time to sew; A time to keep silence and a time to speak..." Ecclesiastes 3:1-7
Here we are on the verge of summer. Soon we will shed out sweaters and start complining about the heat. Some of us will go on vacation and others will work in teh yeard or sit by the pool. But whatever we do we will be entering into the life of the season.
There are many seasons in our lives. First we are children and our lives are relatively care-free, filled with play and little responsibility. Then we move into young adulthood and adulthood and senior citizenry. Each season has its own preasures and its own challenges. Each adds a measure of meaning to our lives that would have been lacking otherwise. Just as our lives have seasons, so too do institutions, schools, businesses, governments and churches.
St. Paul's has, for nearly 200 years, served the people of God in this place. Some of those times were filled with great vigor and with a deep corporate piety. Other times — well, not so much. But God has been faithful to St. Paul's even during the times when St. Paul's wasn't being very faithful to Him. But whatever the season and however faithful a time it was, that time has gone into our church DNA.
Now is a time in the life of this congregation when we must prepare ourselves to enter into a new season, a season which will answer the spiritual needs of people within the situations and demands of the 21st century.
We cannot, nor should we ever, forget or downplay what has gone before us. I have been amazed everytime I've read our founding documents — amazed at the deep Christian faith that is so apparent in them. Without that as our background we could not have continued until today.
As they led us into the mission field that is Leitersburg, so it is now our time to lead our descendents into the same field — in the name of the same Lord.