Summary: We celebrate a life well lived by accepting the salvation made possible by the life and actions of Christ and we embrace a life well lived by living out Galatians 6:7-10.
This is the season of baccalaureate services (and we had a great one last weekend here in Kendallville), of graduations, and of weddings that mark the end of one chapter of life and the beginning of a new chapter of life. It is a time of year in which we frequently celebrate life, love, and learning.
We have also just concluded a season of hard work and deep faith that culminated last weekend in a commitment of at least $58,000 dollars over the next three years in conjunction with nearly $30,000 of already designated building fund money for starting a new chapter in our life and ministry here in Kendallville. I thank the Lord for that commitment and I give all honor and praise to Him for it! Amen? Amen.
Next week we will conclude our current series, Celebrating Our Past… Embracing Our Future… In Christ with a visit from Norberto and Julie ______ as they share of God’s work and their service in South America. A portion of our service will also be used to honor our veterans as part of the Memorial Day weekend. We hope that you will be here.
However, this morning, I am thinking about Brooke, Hillary, and the class of 2004 not only here at East Noble but across Noble County and across the US. This time of year often reminds us of the passing of time because summer is traditionally the time of High School reunions. For some of us we are now in the 5 to 10 year reunion range. Others of us are in the 15 to 20 range and still others of us find that High School is now 25 to 30 years (and longer) in the past and we have kids and classmate’s kids (even grand kids) who are now graduating from High School!
It is always interesting to go to our reunions, high school and college, and see how much people have changed over the years. Some people have changed very little and we immediately recognize them. Others have changed a great deal and we would not know them on the street at all!
Those we thought would turn the world upside down have not moved it at all. And those we thought were “slackers” have turned out to be more successful than we thought they would.
Often during these times we stop and look back at our lives since we walked to “Pomp and Circumstance” in a hot gym or on a hot athletic field. We recall choices made that altered our life in many different ways. We recall the “What if’s?” that leave us wondering from time to time what our lives might have been like had we followed through on some of those “What if’s.” But we also come away with a peace and joy as we return to everyday life with our family and friends and the Lord because we know that we are where God wants us to be and we are right with the Lord. We experience the joy of a living a life well lived.
This morning I want us to spend sometime considering the importance of celebrating and embracing a life well lived. I say these words not to just Brooke and Hillary but to all of us, on either side of High School graduation because how we live our life is a very important issue that we need to address in moments and times like this.
Many years ago, Winston Churchill, during the Second World War I believe, revisited a school, Harrow, that he had attended as a child. He gave a brief speech, lasting less than a minute. He stood before the students and simply said, "Never give up. Never, never give up! Never, never, never give up!"
This morning I want to say the same thing as Churchill said those many years ago. However, I quote St Paul out of our text for this morning, “So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time.”
A life well lived, well lived with God at the center, is one of the ways that we celebrate and embrace what God has for us. Furthermore, living such a life tremendously contributes to a strong church because it can affect the rest of the congregation by the clear and strong testimony that such a life gives. What constitutes a well-lived life? Here are some important aspects to it.
A life well lived is lived by consistently doing what is right.
Earlier in our text for today Paul says, “Remember that you can’t ignore God and get away with it! You will always reap what you sow!”
A familiar e-mail story provides us with a very pointed illustration of this truth. Two cars were waiting at a stoplight. The light turned green, but the man did not notice it. A woman in the car behind him is watching traffic pass around them. The woman begins pounding on her steering wheel and yelling at the man to move. The man does not move. The woman is going ballistic inside her car, ranting and raving at the man, pounding on her steering wheel and dash. The light turns yellow.