Pastor's Note
A Message from Reverend, Carl Freeto

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It’s the Christmas Season…this time of the year has some of the greatest potential for joy. With family coming together and most folks really trying to act out the “Christmas Spirit.” Yet, the Holiday season is the most anxious time of the year. Depression runs rampart and the strain of living becomes real for all of us. So, does Matthew 24 have anything to say to us during the season?

I was embarrassed and uncomfortable because, at 15 years old, I was awkward and unsure of myself. However, my friend Janet had said she would have a date for me at the dance. I trusted her. So, I went to my first dance wondering who that person would be and if she would like me and if I’d like her. My date was unimpressed and swore she would never see me again…three years later we married. Our children and grandkids are smart and are happy in loving homes.

But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son,[a] but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

Some folks want to interpret Jesus’ words as a prediction. I see them as a call to pay attention to the gifts of today. And, a call to let go of the day to day distractions which move your eyes and heart from God’s call. Have you ever noticed that in the middle of small event (like that dance I mentioned above) your life is radically and completely changed? Unimportant events define us and somehow, our life’s often pivot on the edge of something unseen. If we can focus on more than what is going on beyond our daily experiences…God is so ready to bless.

It seems to me that any moment can be understood as either a call to live for the everlasting God or understood as an invitation to get passive and wait for the end times. Jesus says, Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left. “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.

Instead of a hopeful waiting for God that many hear, I find a call to act today as citizens of the Kingdom of God because tomorrow is not promised. If that is the point, then we can experience joy daily in God’s will and trust God with that time to come. Maybe we should go ahead (like that 15 year-old above when he trusted his friend, Janet); and take hold of the invitation Jesus offers to just go ahead and live like Him.

So, in the rush to get presents; in the travel; during the stressful gatherings, maybe Matthew 24 does speak to us. Trust God because today is your gift. Act like Jesus, because in so doing, your future is secure. God Bless & Merry Christmas!
Carl

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