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Once Upon a Time...

When our kids were little, I used to tell them stories at bedtime.

Some were stories I made up and some were stories my Dad told me when I was growing up. They were about different topics and different characters, but they all began the same way, “Once upon a time, in a faraway land called Afghanistan.” At the time, only geography or political experts knew much about Afghanistan. It was one of several countries that were far, far away, seemed mysterious, had very strange names (to our ears), and we knew almost nothing about them. Of course in the last twenty years, Afghanistan has come roaring into fear no evilour consciousness, into our nightly TV viewing, and sadly it has become a place where many American soldiers have lost their lives. No longer is it a country with which to begin a fairy tale story. It occupies a major place in our real lives. We have read about it, we know something about the politics there, and we likely have an opinion about having American troops stationed there. It is a part of our hard reality and it has permanently left the bed-time story field.

God is much the same way for many folks. His name has a nice sound, they think he may exist, and it is handy to use his name for little phrases such as in politics, “God bless America” or when someone sneezes, “God bless you,” or when our children misbehave, “God wouldn’t like.” But suddenly an unexpected tragedy strikes (death, cancer, broken relationship, or any other major upheaval in life) and then, suddenly, everything is falling apart. Some people begin to blame God, but others dig in deeper and realize that God really does exist and that he really is present with them as they walk through the crisis. That is what this Sunday’s sermon (July 10) will explore – the key line in the 23rd Psalm:

“I will fear no evil for Thou art with me.”

In many ways all of the lines before lead up to, and point to, this line — and the lines following draw on this line. The writer does not say there is no evil or that good people will be protected from evil, but the writer does say that God actually exists and that He will walk with us through troubled time and bring us out to the sunshine in due time. (Paraphrased from Rabbi Kushner’s book, “The Lord Is My Shepherd”)

Come join us Sunday and be prepared to allow God to walk with you through whatever you are going through. Perhaps you know someone who could be encouraged by hearing this message – invite them to come with you.

David Brock

 

david brock ovalDavid loves being with people and greatly enjoys serving as co-pastor of Spiceland Friends Church. He and his wife, Linda, enjoy spending time with their three grown children and their grandchildren. David is also a full-time attorney. David likes to say that his job description is simple - it is like a pizza delivery person - deliver a hot, fresh sermon each week in LESS THAN 20 MINUTES! Actually, he does a few more things at the church, but his focus on the pastoral team is preparing a Sunday morning message that makes the scripture relevant and applicable to our lives.


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