NAVS JAN 16, HOW WE DEAL WITH DEATH

WHAT ARE STUDENTS LEARNING ABOUT?

                We do not just study the Bible to memorize information or to simply know the stories of biblical characters like Noah or Abraham.  We study God’s Word because it is HIS NARRATIVE of the World.  In this narrative we know as the Bible, we will find story after story that teach principles for which we can apply to our lives as Disciples of Jesus.  It can seem a daunting task to learn and know everything contained in scripture.  With so much to read and into two sections we know as the Old Testament and New Testament how do we know what to focus on?

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                At NAVS this past Wed we helped students learn how not only to study scripture, but also see the connections between both the Old and New Testament and learn how it applies to their lives now.  Last night we gave students that task of finding between both a story in the Old Testament and a story in the New Testament.  It was so great to see our leaders and students work together as they realized and discovered the connections.  Though both stories were over 1000 years apart, both declared God as our Father and encouraged us not to fear the world, but have Faith.  

Students and their leaders worked through two stories, one in the Old Testament and one in the New Testament. In the Old Testament (2 Samuel) they read about how David’s son Absalom has betrayed David and tried to overthrow him. Despite all this, King David was deeply saddened by Absalom’s death and mourned his death. In the New Testament (John 11) we read how Jesus’s dear friend Lazarus had died. Despite the fact that He knew he could and would raise him back from the dead, Jesus also cried and mourned the death of Lazarus.

BUT HOW DOES THIS APPLY TO THE LIFE OF A PENN MANOR STUDENT?

The Penn Manor school district has experienced much loss and hurt since the start of the school year. It is always hard when we lose a peer, whether we were close to them or not. Many students are struggling to find answers to why these things have happened and continue to happen. This only resulting in further feelings of sadness and hopelessness. The Hope of the Gospel is this: Jesus is Lord of all, He has even conquered death. Death is a normal and inevitable part of life, because of Jesus we no longer have to fear it, but this does not mean we shouldn’t be sad when someone we know passes away. The sadness and mourning we have comes from the love we had for someone. It’s okay to talk about death and the sadness it brings. It is okay to feel sad for the loss of those who have passed away. We must not hide these things away because we are afraid of appearing weak or because we just want to “move on.” We encouraged our students to talk to someone if they were struggling, be open with their questions and fears and turn to Jesus for the peace they seek!

Jacob Marino