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FINALLY! All Saints Day! MEMORIAL DAY for the CHURCH! REMEMBER those who came before us in the FAITH!

Is Halloween over?  Every time zone covered?  PHEW!  I am always glad that’s over.

Today is All Saints Day.  I nod to my Catholic brethren today in their use of this special day to remember those who came before us in the faith, who believed in God and Jesus and lived the life, too.  They do not have to declared by the Pope to be a saint.  For all who die in Jesus Christ are saints and go straight to heaven:

“…the dead in Christ shall rise first.”  I Thessalonians 4:17 (KJV)

Let’s ponder famous saints:  We all know them.  Jim Elliot and his four fellow martyrs.  Premier of Alberta Ernest Manning.  Martin Luther.  Maximilian Kolbe.  (I believe Pope John Paul II is a saint but the Catholic Church has not yet said so and I respect that determination!)  Unnamed martyrs in the world today.

We as followers of Christ have those who went before us:

Capt. William Carpenter – Pearl Harbor survivor (by virtue of a rare liberty from his ship the USS Oklahoma on Saturday Dec 6, 1941 with his new wife Mary), deacon and leader at Lake Ridge Baptist Church where I was a member and active layperson from 1986 to 1996), intellectual, US Navy captain – class of 1940 USNA.  Strong Christian who was a role model and mentor for me.  Went to heaven in 2006. I remember suggesting that the church could do a fundraising drive one time on its own and save approximately $37,000 paid last time and before I knew it – Bill Carpenter had nominated me to head up the new church wide fundraising drive!  We raised seed money for the new Fuson Fellowship Hall.

Timothy Rigney – A strong believer who I knew well, both of us being about the same age and everything.  The girls flocked to Tim (he used to complain lightly that it could be a distraction for Bible study!) but not to me.  Tim and I used to have long talks about things.  He went to heaven in 1991 the victim of a robbery.

Bob Shafer – He and I were introduced because he was a new believer – soon in my Sunday School class.  We also had good times and long talks and went to a retreat together about 1989 and thoroughly enjoyed it.  I remember he was discussing a young lady he was interested in.  What to do, Sandy?  If she is as wonderful as you say, you better ask her out!  He married her.  She was as wonderful as Bob said she was.  He went to heaven about 1995 in a car accident.

Rev. Carol Hensley and his wife Mildred – My uncle and aunt who sent me a card with a encouraging Christian message when I graduated from high school and as a young believer, it made a difference for me.  They are both in heaven today.

Who do you know who helped you in your faith in Christ who you know is in heaven?  Ponder them today.  Thank/Praise the Lord for them.  Try to find a way to be “them” for another believer.  As my denomination says, “Make Christlike disciples in the nations.”  And if you do not know the peace of God in Christ Jesus, go here to find out!  Let this All Saints Day be a wonderful one for you.

 

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood "Sandy" Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia's first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

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