I was standing in line at the post office today to mail a letter. The young man in front of me was clutching a greeting card that had been mailed to him and I couldn't help but overhear pieces of what he told the clerk. "My mom mailed... sliced open... money gone... I don't think there's anything you can do, but I thought I'd ask..."
While he waited for a supervisor, we ended up chatting briefly. He's 20 (or so) and just moved away across the country -- leaving home for the first time and now missing his family (and 9 siblings). The first 6 weeks in Colorado had not been kind to him -- a roommate who stole his savings, side-swiped by a passing car, finding a new place to live, and now this -- the money in the Easter card his mother had mailed him was stolen.
I asked about spiritual beliefs and he shared that he had been attending a prominent church here in the area, but had been having a hard time really connecting with people. "But I'm in church, right? And that's what matters?" he said/asked with a resigned air.
"Ah," I said, "going to church is part of it, but we're designed to live life in community. We're designed to live life with people in such a way that they can see in us and encourage us and challenge us and remind us of God's truth and even call us on things when they see things in our life that don't line up with the Word of God. We need those people - those connections! We need people who will remind us that God is trustworthy and that God is faithful and remind us of those verses and help us stand on them."
After we parted our ways -- me to visit the grocery store for 33 cent avacados and him to talk to the supervisor at the post office -- I realized that I had been preaching to myself. And boy, did it feel good!
My verse to stand on: The Lord sits as King forever. The Lord will give strength to His people. Yes, the Lord will bless His people with peace! Psalm 29:11