Messages from Pastor Bob

Summer 2024 Finding Our Rest and Peace in Jesus
Dear Friends of Zion,

How is your summer going? Some people take vacations, going to a place that they enjoy. Some travel to the mountains, and others go to places like Disney World. Some make plans to be on the shore, camping at Hammonasset Beach State Park or some other location. And for most, the purpose seems to find a place for enjoyment as well as rest.

Jesus and His disciples once tried to get away from the crowds. St. Mark records that the disciples had returned with reports from the work that Jesus had sent them to do. Jesus also had just learned of the death of John the Baptist. And they were surrounded by so many people that they didn’t even have a chance to eat. Jesus said, “Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest” (Mark 6:31).

Jesus knows that there are times when we do need rest and relaxation. But it doesn’t always happen, nor does it provide what we really need. Some people have said that they need a vacation from their vacation. Their time away did not measure up to their expectations. And for many, coming home from a vacation can be stressful, with a week or two of mail as well as the laundry, the mowing, and the other things that have been neglected.

Jesus and His disciples encountered over 5,000 people waiting for them at their quiet place. And the day was spent healing the sick, teaching them, and at the end of the day, feeding them with five loaves and two fish. This was not the quiet time away that they had been expecting. Yet, the day became an opportunity to grow in their faith and to see Jesus at work, helping, healing, teaching, and miraculously feeding those who needed Him.

No matter what your summer is like, it is good to be connected to Jesus, to find in Him our rest and peace. He is still at work helping, healing, teaching, and feeding those who need Him. His Word and Sacraments continue to bless us with the food we need for our souls and the peace we need for our minds.

May God bless your days this summer.