My life as a pastor, father, and homeowner has been pretty busy lately. I have several blog entries sitting in my head waiting to be written. As I type now, I’m sitting at the computer at my wife’s parents’ house.
I guess getting away is a good way to find time to reflect. While I’m here, there’s no way I can fix anything at the house, and the church is far away too. Still, some things come along with me.
As I have mentioned, the congregation I serve is made up of some people who have been at the church since the 40’s along with some younger people who were either the next generation or joined along the way. Then there’s a group of younger folks who have joined recently. Many of the older members are in their 80s and 90s so I’ve been doing many funerals and memorial services.
|Multi-generational Pastor’s Tools|
It takes a lot out of me, but it’s important work. It’s really the price you pay for having a multi-generational church, which I think is really important. In most parts of life, we’re likely to associate with people in similar age groups and stages of life.
People who are older and younger have things to offer each other. I have been amazed by the peace that some of the older church members have. They’ve been through a lot in life – some through the Great Depression and many through World War II. When something is bothering the younger generation, they can offer a perspective that only comes with age and experience.
They have a different relationship with God too. Unless something out of the ordinary happens, I won’t have to face death for many years. But most of the older members of the congregation have thought it through and are prepared for death. You can see a serenity on their faces when they talk about it. “I’m ready to go and be with the Lord whenever he calls me.”
Plus most of the kids around don’t live anywhere near their grandparents. The kids in our church have lots of “church grandparents” to dote on them and appreciate them in a way that parents can’t.
As I was getting ready to leave for vacation this week, another dear member of the congregation died. It difficult timing since I’d like to be there for his wife and the family. As it turns out, they decided to wait for me to perform the memorial service when I get back.
Well, that’s all for now. I’ll try to come back to some of those blog entries that only exist in my head so far.