Dec 26 2017

Pastor Mike at Aztec Methodist Church

We move into a new year with unfinished business. Of course that is always true: the calendar year and our own lives don’t often fit together neatly. But this year Aztec as a community has been wounded, and our recovery has only begun. We have lost three young lives, two by the actions of another, and the third by his own hand. We are diminished by the loss of their physical presence among us, but also by the lost potential of what they might have contributed to make the world a better place. We are confronted again by the transitory nature of life. We know that as Isaiah says: “All people are like grass, and all their faithfulness is like the flowers of the field. The grass withers and the flowers fall…” (Isaiah 40:6-7 ). But we like to keep that idea in the back of our minds, now it has been brought to the forefront. Violence has entered our mostly peaceful community.

But in verse 8 Isaiah says: “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” Throughout the bible, we are reminded that in a world of impermanence God’s word remains a solid foundation for our lives. We have just celebrated the birth of our Savior, the Word made flesh, who died on our behalf, so we might know that the love of God is with us forever, and not even death can separate us from that love. The truth of the incarnation is that we know that God fully understands us. In Christ he experienced all that we experience: the joys and pains of everyday life, being tired after a long day’s work, celebrating weddings, as well as the suffering of losing loved ones. 

So Jesus, our Lord, will be with us throughout our time of recovery. For some time to come our emotions will be a roller coaster. Things will seem fine one moment, then we will have a sudden panic, or bursts of anger or levity. Our focus and memory may seem cloudy. These are all natural reactions to grief. And of course everyone grieves differently and with different timing.

The good news is that God understands. In Isaiah 61 the prophet says “The Lord has anointed me to bring good tidings to the afflicted. He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted… To grant to those who mourn in Zion—to give them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a faint Spirit, that they may be called oaks of righteousness…” This is the same task that Jesus proclaimed as his own (Matthew 11:5 ). He continues with that task today in our lives. It isn’t often instantaneous, but it is sure that our Lord will do this for us. Let us keep this in mind through 2018. 

Vaya con Dios

Aztec United Methodist Church

Sunday Schedule

8:45am   Sunday School
10:00am Worship Service

Community Assistance

Community assistance is available between 8:30am and 1:00pm from Monday through Thursday.

Upcoming Sermons

January 21
Answering God’s call
Jonah 3:1-10
Mark 1:14-20

January 28
The Authority of Christ
1 Corinthians 8:1-13
Mark 1:21-28

February 4
The Gifts of God’s Power
Psalm 147:1-12
Mark 1:29-39

February 11
God’s Glory Revealed
2 Kings 2:1-12
Mark 9:2-9

February 14
Ash Wednesday

February 18
The cost of sin
1 Peter 3:18-22
Mark 1:9-15

February 25
Second Guessing God
Romans 4:13-25
Mark 8:31-38

Child Care Available

Child care is available between 8:45am and 11:00am so that you are more easily able to attend the service and Sunday school.

Methodist News

Daily Devotion

daily words of wisdom and faith
  • Today’s Reflection FEAR IS A GREAT MOTIVATOR, but it is not a saving one. Fear can generate many things, but it cannot generate the gospel’s core: love. First John 4:18a is not engaging in sophistry when it says, “There is no fear in love.” It is telling the truth about Christian discipleship. It is telling […]

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