Prior to learning that his son had taken his own life a couple of weeks ago, Pastor Rick Warren had prepared a message for his congregation called “How to Survive the Worst Day of your Life.” He couldn’t have imagined that he would need to apply his sermon so directly to his own life.
I have borrowed Pastor Warren’s title for my message this Sunday, when we’ll be worshipping in the aftermath of the bombing at the Boston Marathon. For the nearly two hundred people who were injured, for the loved ones of the three who died, and for the wide circle of people affected by this tragedy, this year’s Patriot’s Day may have been the worst day of their lives.
We at Community Church of Providence join the entire country in expressing our sympathies, prayers, solidarity, and ongoing concern for all those suffering from another senseless act of terror.
This tragedy hit very close to home (more about that on Sunday). Most of us have walked on Boylston Street; some of us may have been spectators at the marathon; and all of us have had or will have a day that stands out as our worst ever.
How can we survive such a day? A faith that doesn’t address this question is ultimately useless. Thankfully the Christian gospel not only addresses it but has an answer for the question at its very core. The faith that has been passed down to us is a direct response to the worst day in the life of our founder, Jesus Christ.
The Bible texts that bear witness to Jesus as Lord provide specific guidance on how to survive the worst times of our lives. In fact, they teach us how we can rebuild and eventually construct an even better life than the one tragedy stole from us.
After the kind of week we’ve had, we need to be together for support, companionship, encouragement, and healing. I hope that you will follow the nudging of your heart and respond to that need by being with us.
With love and warmth,