“Love paid a price so HOPE could become a reality.”
- Susan Gaddis
Recently, Kevin and I reflected on the weddings we have officiated and attended over the past 30 years. So many joyous memories of young love ready to experience the journey called marriage. As we talked, laughed and reminisced over these moments, we came to a realization. As of late, we have officiated and attended more funerals than weddings.
We posed a few questions to each other, "Why the change in events?" "Are we getting older and is this the natural progression?" "Are loved ones dying earlier?" Although, we did not come to a firm conclusion, we did have an epiphany.
Now, realize this is from my perspective, funerals are so much more meaningful. I am not saying I don't enjoy weddings; Chelsea and Kyle’s wedding last January still warms my heart and brings a smile to my face. However, when I officiate a funeral, hearts are wounded and grieved and they need to experience our Savior's love, embrace and healing comfort.
A funeral is the outward conclusion to our life here on earth - it is filled with the memories of weddings, births, celebrations, challenges and struggles. It is a full circle of two ends meeting - which normally causes one to examine their own life. Is this all there is to life? I do wonder, if these were any of the thoughts of the two Mary's and Salome?
“When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus' body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?" But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. "Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here.” -Mark 16:1-8
As City Impact’s staff walk daily with at-risk children, youth and families through times of difficulties, pain and hardships – it is the most incredible blessing to share that there is a hope. A hope that is not based on their ability, personality or finances. It is founded on that fact that Jesus loved each and every one of us so much that he paid the ultimate price so hope can become our reality.
Friends, that is exactly why City Impact exists so we may share Christ’s reality of HOPE. This Easter, will you consider giving a sacrificial gift to help us continue sharing that special message? Blessings to you and your loved one this Easter.
Because of Him,
Betty Alvarez Ham
Betty Alvarez Ham
City Impact asks you to stand with us during this difficult time within our communities.
Please consider making a donation today.
We thank you for bringing HOPE to the at-risk children, youth and families we serve within Ventura County!