Monday, October 27, 2008

Thoughts on All Saints

“I sing a song of the saints of God, patient and brave and true,
who toiled and fought and lived and died for the Lord they loved and knew.
And one was a doctor, and one was a queen and one was a shepherdess on the green;
they were all of them saints of God and I mean, God helping to be one too.”

All Saints’ Day is coming up this weekend. On this day we remember those who have shaped our faith, made us who we are, and who have gone on before us to heaven. This year I’ll be remembering my paternal grandmother, who died in March. She loved God and loved the church with all her heart and through all her struggles in life. Before the dementia made her forget she could, she played the piano for the Saturday night dances and Sunday morning worship at the independent living facility she lived at with my grandfather. She took such joy in the music itself, and even more that she could produce something that others could enjoy. And it was no easy gift; she had played since she was a child, and when she had to have a finger amputated late in her life, she thought she’d never play again. I don’t which I felt more strongly: the joy when she taught herself to play nine-fingered, or the grief when she forgot that she’d done it and thought she couldn’t play anymore.
There are saints all over who shape our lives, from Sunday School teachers and family to friends who treat us with kindness. Who are the saints in your life? Who are you remembering? And who will remember you as a saint of God, a role model, a teacher, someone who shaped their faith and made them who they are?

“They lived not only in ages past; there are hundreds of thousands still.
The world is bright with the joyous saints who love to do Jesus’ will.
You can see them in school, on the street, in the store, in church, on the sea, in the house next door;
they are saints of God, whether rich or poor, and I mean to be one too.”

--“I Sing a Song of the Saints of God” by L. Scott, #712 in our hymnal

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