First Baptist Church
515 N. Ladd Street • Pontiac, Illinois 61764
"For Such a Time as This..."
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At this time of the year, we are reminded of the breadth of our lives and the intricacy of our connections as we commemorate mothers, fathers, graduates, and fallen service members, and as we look forward to times together over the summer.
This past month I attended the celebration of life service for Mac Shotwell, who had served as Executive Minister of the American Baptist Churches of the Great Rivers Region from 1990-1996. I worked with Mac in several regional capacities, and after his retirement he worked closely with the American Baptist Men, so Gordie Frobish was also in attendance at his service. It was good to remember him, to think back on that stage of my life, and to see how our lives are intertwined in such interesting ways.
Then I will be traveling to Indiana to help celebrate the 95th birthday of my mother’s childhood friend, who was part of our family life as I was growing up. Fay and my mom had known each other since second grade, growing up on nearby farms and attending a one-room elementary school together, and she and her family often got together with mine.
I visited friends in Iowa, and I will be attending a conference with fellow clergy and church members in the GRR. And I had a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend with my sons and their families.
Being at such events leads me to ponder the remarkable ways in which our lives are woven together from different strands of time, place, and personalities. I’m sure the same is true for all of us, as we gather with loved ones and tell stories of our lives together.
One of my favorite verses of Scripture is found in Psalm 68: 5-6: “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.” God “sets us” in families, not only of biology but also of friendship and mutual service.
May we be profoundly grateful for the networks of family, friends, colleagues, and community members we see in our daily lives. And may we be welcoming and inviting to those who need a family in which to grow.
Sundays at 9:00am
(see our Small Groups page for more details)
Sundays at 10:00 am
Church Office Hours
Monday - Wednesday
8:30 am - 3:30 pm