Over the last several days the abundance of happiness has enveloped our home while all five of our family are under the same roof. With older kids these moments are not taken lightly. We have enjoyed being together but this time next week will find us once again going our separate ways.
Many years ago when Nancy and I first made the move to Southern California from the eastern part of the United States I would often feel the sting of sin at the airport as we said “good-bye” to our parents and extended family. I was reminded in the Bible in heaven there will be no more separation. When we are together with those we love we experience a little slice of heaven.
In my continued reading of THE PASTOR by Eugene Peterson he describes a new revelation he had on the profile of the church, “It had taken me a long time, with considerable help from wise Christians, both dead and alive, to come to this understanding of church: a colony of heaven in the country of death; a strategy of the Holy Spirit for giving witness to the already-inaugurated kingdom of God.” (p. 110).
The church SHOULD be a place where we can experience the belonging of community, the prayers of those who care, the teaching to equip us for life and the attitude of generosity. This is the gift of togetherness at its finest. Eternity has already begun!
Today I count myself blessed to pastor in this “colony of heaven” found in Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A. It is here I see those who not only care for each other but long to bring life to the “country of death” and despair around them.