February 16, 2020 - Preparing for the Lord's Day
Preparing for the Lord's Day
Dick Thomson was my first pastoral visit in ordained ministry. I had recently received a call to pastor a church in Gaffney, South Carolina and it was my goal to meet all the members, face to face, including the shut-ins. I really did not know what to expect when I arrived at Mr. Thomson’s apartment in the Eden Terrace nursing facility. I was twenty-seven and he was well into his eighties. What would we talk about? Would he be willing to receive pastoral care from someone as green as I was? Yet when I entered his room all of my fear was immediately relieved. He was kind and gentle and understanding. He wanted to know about my family and my faith. With ease he shared his needs and his wounds. He shared about how he had lost his left leg in World War II, how he lost his daughter to a car accident, how he had lost his wife to cancer a few years prior, and how he had lost his health, his home, and his independence in the last year. He was a man with great faith and great spiritual fruit, but also a man who had endured great loss. And though his body was failing, his spirit continued to grow in strength and vitality. Three years following our initial meeting, Dick Thomson died. Yet, he did not spend his final years imbittered by what he had lost, but rather joyful for what he had gained in Christ alone.
In our Psalm for this week we come to the question of how to age well; how to age with hope. In a culture that celebrates youth and mourns old-age it is difficult to embrace each passing year with hope. Yet what we will see this week is that all Christians can live with purpose and hope in our final years as we trust in the redeeming work of our sovereign Lord. To come prepared for the sermon take time this week to read and to meditate upon Psalm 71, Deuteronomy 32:7, Job 32:7, Psalm 70; 103:5, Ecclesiastes 12:1-7, Isaiah 26:19, 2 Corinthians 4:16; 12:7-10, Philippians 3:20-21, Titus 2:1-5 and this Table Talk article, Show Us How to Finish Well.
As we gather to worship our loving Father this Lord’s day, we will join our hearts in song, singing the Hymn of Praise “Amazing Grace”, the Acclamation of Praise “Rock of Ages” and the Hymn of Response “Abide with Me”. Let us come to worship this Sunday prepared to hear God’s Word, to receive it in faith, to love and treasure it in our hearts, and to practice it in our lives that we may continue to glorify and enjoy Him!
If you’re going to be out of town this Sunday, let me encourage you to listen to the sermon online, through the Rivermont App, (available at the App Store or Google Play), or you can download the REPC podcast, which will be delivered to your mobile device.
Sermon Text: Psalm 71
Sermon Title: Whole Life Care
- Remember God’s Lifetime of Care
- Trust God’s Present Strength
- Pursue God’s Continuing Purpose
- Hope in God’s Resurrection Promise