Midweek Message

Update, 11th Day of Christmas, January 4, 2020

Jim Hopkins

January 3, 2021

One more thought on the year gone by from Former LABC Moderator Dr. Alean Saunders-Coffey


Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
James 1:12 (NIV)

There have been times in our lives, when—individually, and as a people—we were seriously tested. For most, The Year 2020 has proven to be one of those times. Prerequisites were not required, practice tests were not offered; schedules, syllabi or reading lists were not provided. Nevertheless, prepared or not, we would be tested. As an “open book” examination, the only requirement for passing the test was that at 11:59 p.m. on December 31, 2020 we were alive and accepted the results.

The United States of America experienced severe negative effects from a world wide health pandemic, vast shortages of resources to ensure citizens’ survival, nationwide protests for racial justice, economic insecurity and a federal government leadership change. There have been dilemmas in how to provide equitable health care, to ensure education of students, and to administer social services.

Often in adversity, however, wonderful things can and do emerge. The Year 2020 provided us with opportunities to: Pause Remember Reflect Meditate Pray Sew Read Write Create Study Learn Call Vote Walk Run Move Dream Listen Hear Stay Donate Play Sing Moan Hum Whistle Feel Taste Smell Hear Touch Dream Listen Do, and, just be. We sought peace, focused on important things, and managed to shut out some of the world’s loud noise.

We mourn as we remember citizens we have lost. We celebrate health care providers, first responders, caregivers and essential workers. We open our hearts to forgiveness, kindness, humility and compassion. We yearn for peace on earth, goodwill toward all, joy and love in abundance.

As the Year 2020 comes to an end, I acknowledge there have been moments when I have wanted to yell, scream, shout, say, utter, speak or just whisper: go away, scram, scoot, scat, run along. But, I suggest that we just calmly and quietly say: Khuda hafiz (Urdu), Sayonara (Japanese), Arrivederci (Italian), Kwaheri (Swahili),
Ma’a as-salaama (Arabic), Au Revoir (French), Yasou (Greek),
L’hitraot (Hebrew), Joigin (Cantonese), Ohdah-bo (Yoruba),
Donadagohvi (Cherokee), Auf Wiedersehen (German),
Teanastellen (Amharic), Adios (Spanish), Goodbye (English).

We have hope as we enter a new phase of spiritual healing, recovering wellness, caring for one another, moving through tough times. We encourage and support putting people before revenue, compassion before selfishness and concern for others before expediency.

We move forward, with the knowledge and confidence that we have learned some things, with the understanding that we have much more to learn, and with the wisdom to put into practice all things that are beneficial to each of us, and our fellow inhabitants
on earth.

If we ourselves, loved ones, friends, congregations, communities—and people we don’t even know—have lived, remained healthy and survived, we can offer gratitude for many blessings—great and small. We have stood the test. We have persevered under trial.

Welcome, Year Twenty-Twenty-One!

May we never forget that in the sunshine of our lives, through the storm and after the rain—it’s all with God—in all ways and forever. All praise to God.
John William Coltrane, American Jazz Saxophonist and Composer

Alean Saunders-Coffey
December 31, 2020

On LABC Zoom

Tonight – 7:00 LABC Youth

Tuesday – 6:00 p.m. No Soup, But Study (Solomon’s Prayer for Wisdom)

Wednesday – 10:30 a.m. Wednesday Prayer and Bible Study (Solomon’s Prayer for Wisdom)

Wednesday – 5:30 p.m. Service Honoring the 25th Anniversary of the Disfellowshiping

If you would like to assist the Lau family – takethemameal.com (Last name Lau, code 94602)