Fence Post of Faith September-October 2011

Well sorry to write so late I’ve been so busy My grandson’s Owen birthday and a day later my birthday, then a action pack week with the Tri State Rodeo in Fort Madison Ia. It was nice to watch a former Iowa high school rodeo contestants Robin “Webb” Beck win the barrels and Wade Sundell win the saddle bronc.  September and the first part of October are a great time of the year. It’s a time to remember summer is gone and fall is here. Time for leaves to change color and time to get that last trail ride in before bad weather!

A lot of things happened historically in September-October: The United States Constitution was first singed in 1797, Thomas Edison invented the first Electric light 1879, The first Pony Express ride ended Oct 1861, Francis Scott Key wrote his poem “Defense of Ft. Henry” that was later re-named Star Spangled Banner 1814,Henry Ford introduced the Model T automobile Oct 1908, “Lassie” made its television debut 1954, “Gunsmoke’ Premiered on CBS Television 1955, and we can never forget 9/11/2001.

In September we lost a good Cowboy named “Joe Soukup” of Allerton Iowa besides being a good Roper and Steer Wrestler he was married and a father of 3 girls. A great person if you ever met him, he always had a smile on his face. Sometimes we ask ourselves why this happened  to such a nice family at a young age.

Accepting death, our own or that of our loved ones, may be the hardest thing we do in life. Death is hard to watch, hard to understand and even harder to explain. If you don’t believe that just ask anyone who has tried to explain death to a child? You can potty train them. You can teach them their ABC’s and how to count. You can teach them to share and to play well with others. You can teach them “God is good!  God is great.”    But teaching them about death is a lesson that has no good lesson plans.

Have you ever had the daunting task of discussing death with a child?
Children have a way of messing up our simplistic answers to complex questions when they ask “WHY”.  Don’t they?
Death is hard to understand and hard to accept, especially when you were close to them.
The bible tells us that life is extremely brief. The Author of James writes: “For what is your life, It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.(James 4:14)
I once visited a woman who was dying of cancer in a care center.  And near the end of her days, she confided in me that: “I’m ready to go, but I’m not ready to leave.
Ready to go but not ready to leave. That sounds like Jesus as recorded in Marks’ Gospel. I am not going to be on this earth to much longer. Indeed, the time is growing short for me, says Jesus.
God knows what he doing. He doesn’t make mistakes, especially what he is doing.  We don’t always understand his means or his methods. He has purpose to which we are not always privy, but we know he does all things for a reason.
He allows winds to blow and storms to rage. Sorrows and tears to befall us, and our ways may wend through darkness and difficulty, but as for God, his ways are perfect. He asks us to trust him. We can trust him through sunshine and shadows. When we cannot trace his hand, we can trust his heart.
It’s is normal to occasionally as “Why?” Though God may not always answer our “Why” questions, He listens to them and responds in the wisest ways.
The Greatest “Why” in the Bible was uttered by the Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross when he said, “My God, My God why hast thou forsaken me?” and there is something about that “Why” that swallows up all the others.
Death doesn’t seem as tragic to God as it does to us. To us it is separation and sorrow. But to God it is: to be absent from the body but present with the lord. I know it’s not what we want to here but our Friend has beaten us to heaven and is more alive than ever, for God is not a God of the dead, but of the living. We don’t understand all of God’s purposes, but we know he does all things well, and we must simply leave it there, in his love.

Adios your friend Jeff Metcalf