Whatsoever Things Are True
by Dan Coburn
Pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church
Had occasion to perform two funerals this week, and consequently spent a great deal of time on the subject of Grief; not that we are sadistically preoccupied with it, but rather there seems to be an epidemic of hurting people about us. Weather through death, separation or perhaps a loved one is being overtaken by some ugly disease and we can understand neither the ailment or the reason. 
The capacity to love is God given, and the capacity to love in a Godly way is something only people with a relationship with Christ can begin to understand. It is this very capacity to love which enables or rather causes us to grieve so deeply-sometimes violently, and therefore can be such an effective tool for the “adversary” (Rev. 2: 10).
Grief in your dictionary is simply “sorrow over loss”. This can’t be improved upon. It can be the loss of a loved one, loss of a relationship, loss of possession, loss of a friendship, loss of health (yours or someone else’s). It can even be the loss of a job and therefore status, or perhaps the loss of a dream. The Greek and Hebrew words from which we get our word grief can be translated “vexation” or “sorrow”–to sigh or to grown. These are more descriptions than definitions but you get the picture. It is something common to all, and as you sit at your table reading this, you are either experiencing grief, you have, or you will.
God is all about relationships. We were made “by God, and for God”–Collo. 1: 16-18. Furthermore, reconciling our relationship with Him was the very purpose for what Christ did on the cross of Calvary for you and me. It grieves God how we sometimes treat one another. There are countless examples of this in the old and new testaments. Often, the poor treatment of others is the very reason God brought judgment on the nation Israel. This is something we have the power to avoid. 
Does God really take this seriously? Matt. 25: 40. Let’s think outside the box for a moment. In Paris France there is a world famous museum called the Louvre, and for any of you men out there like myself with no class who have the opportunity to go there, I’d pass it up. Still something happened there that fascinates me. Around the turn of last century, the Mona Lisa was put on display there. In 1911 it was stolen, and confident that it would someday be recovered, the museum just left the wall blank until 1913 when the painting was returned. Here is the interesting part. The museum (particularly the wall) was visited by more people those two years, to see the blank wall where the Mona Lisa was, than in the previous 11 years combined. If there is someone you need to tell you love them, do it today. They may sooner than later, be the blank spot on the wall.  Reconcile today. Share Jesus Today. Four things always show up at funerals. Family, Friends, Food and Faith. Only one will get you out of the box. 

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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