From the Pastor’s Desk

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As we are just a few weeks after Easter Sunday which celebrates an empty tomb and a resurrected
Jesus, we the people of God continue to embrace the hope of resurrection. We now find ourselves in the
season of Easter. Notice it is not the season “after” Easter but it is the season “of” Easter which tells us
that this season of resurrection is not over.
     As people there will be moments when we are surrounded by death. We will lose family members
and friends to death. Sometimes it is expected and other times the tragedy is when death comes unexpected.  For me as a person of faith I know comes the promise of resurrection. I do not know how people without faith can find hope after death. Who do they turn to find hope? What will it be they cling to as a new tomorrow?
     One hymn that seems to be a favorite of many and one I use at many services of death and resurrection is “Hymn of Promise”. I love the opening words of promise that “In the bulb there is a flower, in
the seed, an apple tree, in cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free!” We here in Wisconsin
know how true it is with these words: “In the cold and snow of winter there’s a spring that waits to
be, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.”
     We anticipate apple trees, butterflies, and springtime. The hardest part is the waiting of them to be
revealed at its own season. Ecclesiastes reminds us that there is a season for everything:

A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a 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 throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to throw away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

When the time comes to mourn, we remember the promise that the day will come to dance—
most likely for and by our loved one who transforms from glory into glory in the realms of heaven. Death
is not an easy topic in our society. We tend to put death “in its place” usually behind closed doors and
handled by the “death professionals”. Why do we remain so afraid of death? We know it will come for all
people. We are not excluded from its sting. But scripture tells us there is now no sting in death because
Christ our Lord has conquered death; Christ has conquered the dark tomb; Christ has brought the forgiveness of all sin and restores all brokenness of our world.
     Let us embrace death not as a morbid occurrence but a promise of hope—a hymn of promise, all
good promises given by Christ our Lord. Rejoice! Christ is risen! Christ is risen indeed! Alleluia!

           Pastor Kevin