This past weekend was most difficult for me. Friday morning, I received word that my dear friend and colleague, the Very Rev. Ernest K. Baiden, ad died earlier that morning. How could this be true? I just saw him last week. Yet, I knew it was true. I couldn't accept it. I walked around the house like a zombie, not really focusing on anything. Doing something for a bit. Crying for a bit. Staring into space for a bit. Rev. Baiden was more than my pastor, more than my boss. Oh, how I will miss him.
I was scheduled to preach in Kalsagri on Sunday, yesterday. I am very grateful that for once I stayed up late on Thursday, not to color, but to finish my sermon. I knew on Friday, after hearing the news, writing a sermon would be useless.
The theme of the day was to be, "Listen to the Lord and Live." What a perfect theme for the day! Two days earlier, I wasn't too sure as to what direction the sermon would go. Yes, it was written, but, still... And then, at church, before I preached, I announced Rev. Baiden's death. Most people knew already. Plus, I was wearing funeral cloth. Then, I began. After a few minutes, I put my notes down, and continued. It was truly the Lord who gave me yesterday's message. And, the untimely death of Rev. Baiden was a real life example that people understood.
I am not fond of having people repeat the "Sinner's Prayer." I want people to pray on their own, to mean it when they ask Jesus into their heats. Yesterday, we didn't have an altar call, per se. But, I definitely gave the invitation and had people pray on their own. I asked people to pray and ask Jesus to be Lord of their lives. Or, if they had already done that, which many have, what are the areas of your life where Jesus isn't Lord? Give those to Him. We prayed. And prayed. Surely, the Lord was in this place. This service was the perfect end to a most difficult weekend. Praise the Lord!