Recently the mother of our pastor’s wife went to be with Jesus. Having not lost a relative so close it can be hard to really empathize. But, it is wonderful to know that there is a sure hope in Jesus.
I was at Al and Lucy’s house, the day after Lucy’s mother passed away, for our church staff meeting (which only involves myself and Al!). We started at about 7:30pm. Within the first 20 minutes of our meeting, not one, but two, people called at the door to drop cards in for the family and also deliver a home-made frozen meal.
This struck me as a simple, but incredibly profound, expression of the unity we have together as brothers and sisters in Christ, as well as a wonderful way to show love for one another. When one suffers, we all suffer. When one is joyful, we are all joyful. I think we are much better at the latter than the former, but often not great at either.
You might think I am over-reacting, you might come from a church where this happens all the time and if that is the case then keep going, but nevertheless, it is these small gestures which show the world around us something of what is means to be loved by Jesus and share that love with others.
This can not only be applied in the case of a bereavement, but I also know of times where 2 weeks worth of meals have been provided for couples with newborn babies. Again it doesn’t need to be set up as a rule that the church must keep, but should just be the overflow of seeking to love one another.
I can’t help but wonder if this kind of thing was more the ‘norm’ across the churches in the UK, would we be a much more attractive witness to the world around, because we would show that Jesus makes a difference to our lives in a really practical way?