This past week, while friend and associate Phil was attending the Best Practices conference for LCMS congregations in Arizona, the pastoral responsibilities were solely mine. And in that week, as I shared with the Bible class, yesterday, we ran the gambit of pastoral ministry.
There were two baptisms this weekend: a little boy on Saturday and a little girl on Sunday. Both were wonderful celebrations as family members from near and far (Wisconsin and Kentucky) gathered and God’s grace was extended. God bless Clayton and Derby with strong faith and long life!
There were also times to attend to matters at the end of life. During a hospital visit I was able to share the service of the Commendation of the Dying with a husband and wife as she was facing the last days of her life among us. Also, on this past Saturday there was a visitation for a family mourning the death of a son in his early 20s. Sad events, without doubt, but events in which the news of the death and resurrection of Christ Jesus for the forgiveness of sins and life everlasting is essential.
These latter events, above, necessitated the former. It was the advent of sin in this world that led to the inevitability of death, the wages of sin. Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men[a] because all sinned.Romans 5:12.
Thankfully, our God did not leave us in our misery, but addressed our need for salvation with His own sacrifice and resurrection. Because of that, the former events mentioned above bring us hope and comfort amidst events like the latter. 3 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.Romans 6:3-4.
God’s blessings to you as you walk in that newness of life, today. And God bring you comfort as you remember your baptism and how, in that, God has promised you life as His child in the kingdom new and glorious upon Christ Jesus’ return.