But be sure to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.
–1 Samuel 12:24
The last week of July I found myself in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee for a family reunion/get together. 30 people ages 7 months to 81 years all together in one house. If you happened to catch my sermon on July 23rd you know that vacationing with 3 children isn’t quite the relaxing vacation most of us dream of. However at some point during the drive home the mountains were in my rearview mirror and all three children were simultaneously napping, there was a period of quiet I found myself looking back at the previous week. Sure it was crazy, it was loud, it was chaotic, but it was also wonderful. To be able to spend that time with family laughing and enjoying one another’s company was a great gift. In looking at the Scripture from 1 Samuel it made me realize that one of the great things that God has done for me is provide an absolutely amazing family to love and support me and my family.
Often it is easy to start to take those things for granted and just accept them as normal and the way it is. But the Scripture from 1 Samuel provides a reminder for us as to how we should respond to God’s blessings in our lives. We are to fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all our hearts.
Don’t get hung up on the word fear in that Scripture, the original Hebrew word can be translated as fear, respect or reverence, it has a very positive quality, not how we generally view fear today. Samuel is imploring the reader to have a proper respect for the Lord our God and to serve faithfully. That is my hope for us as a Church as we begin a new month on the calendar. We have a lot of events and things that will be happening in the coming weeks and I pray that if you feel led to participate DO IT! There are so many different ways to help and things to be done that I promise we will have somewhere for you to help that will make use of your skills and talents. When I look at all the great things that God has done for and through Emmanuel UMC I can’t help but rejoice and give thanks to our heavenly Father.
I hope you will join me this month in giving thanks, in giving praise, in worshiping and in serving the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords.