Ebb and Flow

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, ebb and flow is “used to describe something that changes in a regular and repeated way.“ That could describe many things in our world. We experience the changing of seasons in nature. Baseball fans are ready tor a new season to begin. We are only a couple of months away from another school year coming to an end. Even in church life, there are regular changes.
Last Sunday, Stacey and I visited the congregation in Arkansas where we spent 14 years. Although it was good to reconnect with old friends, we were struck by how many familiar faces were gone and had been replaced by new faces we did not know. Here at Southwest, we experience the same thing.
Within the last few months, the Neill and Conley families have both moved away. Although I have no doubt they will be great additions to new congregations, they will be missed here. Their entire families were active in so many of the ministries that make Southwest the church family that it is. They will be hard to replace, yet the work they did here still needs to be done.
We have suffered losses as people we love dearly have gone on to their reward. We celebrate lives well lived to God’s glory. We know we will meet again, but their absence here is still felt.
On the other side of the ebb and flow, we have regular additions and changes to our church family. New members have joined us. Some are old friends, while others are new ones. The sounds of babies and children are a regular part of our gatherings. We have rejoiced as we witnessed transformed lives rise from the waters of baptism.
The ebb and flow is all part of the life of the church. It is such a blessing to be a part of the Southwest family. The God who unites us is the One who will always remain.
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. – Ecclesiastes 3:1

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