November 15, 2017
As we sit at home, unable to attend our granddaughter's funeral, we worship God along with them, following the bulletin. If you have the time, please join us.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah Psalm 46:1-3
Our note: The volcano in Hawaii is currently crumbling down into the sea. Even if the world were to end, we need not fear. Even in unfathomable destruction, we can have a quiet confidence in God's ability to save. If God is our refuge in the midst of total destruction, how much more is He our refuge in everyday life. He is our eternal retreat and strength in any circumstance.
Matt Redman - 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord)
Scripture Reading: Psalm 46
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah.
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns. The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah.
Come, behold the works of the LORD, how he has brought desolations on the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the chariots with fire. "Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!" The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah.
Our notes: Every city needs a source of water to sustain the citizens. Rivers flow through them. Jerusalem had no river, but it had God who sustained the citizen's lives, like a river. As long as God flowed through the hearts of people, they were helped and sheltered. God is our fortress in the time of need. When Jerusalem abandoned God, He no longer protected them and they fell to the Babylonian army. Feeling heartbroken, crushed, stressed, saddened, weak, at a loss, suffering, anguish, emotionally exhausted, spent, and full of pain are some of the ways we feel when life gets tough. God never promised us we would not suffer, but He does promise us that He will always be by our side, giving us strength and comfort. God also promised us His final victory and we can be still and reverent, and know that He is God, honoring Him in all his power and majesty.
Greeting and Prayer
(Please pray with us) Dear Lord, we are gathered together here in this place to thank you for the gift of Abigail. The precious gift that you gave. You knitted her together in her mother's womb, and allowed her to be born, and live for six days. You allowed for her go home and be with her family, her mom and dad and big sister and grandparents. You allowed us to hold her and love her and to spent time with her here on earth. Then you saw fit to give her eternal rest and she is now in heaven with you, full of joy, and fully alive. Though we miss her, we know we will see her again in heaven. In You is our comfort. We do not worry for Abigail anymore. We are sad, but she is a saint to the heir of heaven. She knows way more about You and heaven than we do. In Jesus name, Amen.
Scripture Reading: Revelation 21:1-7
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away."
And he who was seated on the throne said, "Behold, I am making all things new." Also he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true." And he said to me, "It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God and he will be my son.
Our notes: God finished the work of creation, Jesus finished the work of redemption, and the Trinity will finish the entire plan by a new heaven and a new earth. God dwells among us, He is omnipresent. What a comfort to know that he wipes away every tear. He comforts us, loves us, and weeps when we weep. Death will be no more. Death will be gone for good. This crying and mourning and pain that we do for Abigail now will at that time never be experienced again by any of his children. Those who believe in Him through all strife and struggle will be His child and inherit His kingdom. God began the work and He will complete the work.
Hymn: It is Well
It Is Well - Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music
Scripture Reading: Isaiah 35:5-10
Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped; then shall the lame man leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute sing for joy. For waters break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water; in the haunt of jackals, where they lie down, the grass shall become reeds and rushes.
And a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it. It shall belong to those who walk on the way; even if they are fools, they shall not go astray.
No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there, but the redeemed shall walk there. And the ransomed of the LORD shall return and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
Our notes: God prepares for us the road home. He takes us from the desert of suffering to heaven. We find the road by following God. He ransoms us; He saves us; He redeems us; He buys us back; He paid the price. He walks with us, not just pointing the way, but walking beside us. He protects us from evil. He chases away sorrow and sighing and exchanges it for gladness and joy.
Slideshow of the Family
Music during slideshow: Be Still my Soul" by David Archuleta
Message from the Scriptures (we replaced this with our meditations on the above scriptures, notes)
A Word of Thanks (by our son)
Congregational Hymn: Sovereign Over Us
Michael W. Smith - Sovereign Over Us