“Therefore encourage one another with these words.” (1 Thess. 4:18)
St. Paul didn’t act as though he had more than he really had. He had words, and they were good words. Words can open minds, console hearts, and change futures. Words from God, founded on the acts of God, can do even greater things: they can raise the dead.
Here in central Wisconsin, we can know how words work just by looking at the great hunting season that unfolds this month. Consider how much talk accompanies hunting; think of the photos that people post of their kill to illustrate the stories that they tell. That conversation encourages hunters in their hope and accompanies them into the woods.
It’s a reflection of the greater glory of Jesus Christ. His life has authored a deathless word, the Holy Gospel that not only speaks of forgiveness now but also of the world to come. This holy Word we must steadily proclaim, more and more, to encourage one another and reveal to this present world that there is a happy future to be had. In the end, that sacred conversation of the Church is the hope that will accompany souls into the woods, however dark the woods may be.
LET US PRAY: Speak, O Lord, we will hear You, for Your Word alone is life. Amen
Pastor Steven K. Gjerde