“For all the saints, who from their labors rest…”
The above line is the opening line of the hymn For All the Saints that we will sing at both services this week. It is a modern classic, written in the last few decades but in words and melodies that resonate deeply with people of faith. It is one that is as expected on All Saints Sunday as Silent Night is on Christmas Eve.
All Saints Sunday is a way of celebrating the communion of saints. That line in the creeds is not about some sort of super-Christians. It is about ordinary people, joined to Christ in baptism, and having an impact on the world God loves in their day in and day out activity. These are the people who changed our diapers when we were babies, taught us right and wrong and about God’s love, and did the things needed ot keep God’s world running. Many of these people have now moved on from life with us. But in death we remember that they are still alive in Christ and celebrate the impact they have had on us.
For each of us, this day also raises a question: What kind of saint will I be remembered as when I have died and left this life? As we remember with both pain and fondness those who have touched us, someday we all hope that someone will remember us and give thanks for who we have been. Are we generous, caring and compassionate people? Are we faithful and dependable in the way we live? Could people look at us and see a glimpse of Jesus who is always with us?
Take time this week to reflect on those who God has used to shape your life. And then take time to reflect on your own life and the legacy you are creating right now.