All Saints Day
10:23 AM Here is a fine, brief sermon for All Saints Day (scroll down to the section titled "Time to Dust Off Those Saints"). I like this sentence in particular: "A world without saints forgets how to pray." We don't pray to the saints or through the saints and we don't pray for the saints (they're already in heaven and don't need our prayers--we're the ones who need both to pray and the prayers of others), but we let the memory of their faith inspire us to pray and serve the Lord today.
10:21 AM Here is a link to the words and music to one of my favorite hymns, For All the Saints. Make sure you have your speakers turned on so you can hear the soaring melody that goes with this triumphant hymn. We rarely sing this hymn--in fact, I can't remember the last time we sang it in a service, but it has become a personal favorite. I remember going to the piano in the choir room by myself after Gary Olson died and singing it with tears running down my face. This verse especially stirs my soul:
O blest communion, fellowship divine!
We feebly struggle, they in glory shine;
All are one in Thee, for all are Thine.
10:20 AM This is All Saints Day, one of the finest, most joyful days of the Christian year. It's the day when we remember and give thanks for all true believers around the world, especially those who have gone before us into heaven. Evangelicals often pay little attention to the Christian year (for various reasons), but this is one holiday that should really be a "holy day" for us. For starters, make a mental list right of believers you know who are in heaven today. Do you have loved ones and friends who died in the Lord? Think of those saints of God who have passed from earth to heaven in the last 12 months. Remember them. It is biblical and right that we should not forget those who have entered the "Church Triumphant." Give thanks to God for their life and testimony. Let the memory of their faith inspire you to serve Christ today.