I once read a report saying that elderly people were more optimistic about the future than younger people were.  Maybe part of the reason is there will be less time left for old people than for younger.  But that does not explain it fully.  I believe that experiences we have throughout our lives prove that most of the difficulties we have in our lives are not that bad compared to what  we usually predict beforehand, and there have been ways to overcome those troubles beyond our expectations.

As Christians, we put our concerns and hope in God's hands.  We believe that God knows us more than we do and God wants to lead us through ways we cannot plan or even imagine.  Our lives always go up and down, but God is always with us, and those people who believe this will have peaceful minds in any circumstances. 

We will go into Lenten season soon in February.  The time of Lent usually comes at the end of winter, around the time people start feeling tired of the cold weather and already miss the atmosphere of Christmas and New Year against the reality of life.  

Our church music groups will prepare a special presentation, which is a mix of drama and music for Palm Sunday in the afternoon.  The partner of this event will be Parabola (a group of youth who participate in drama activities led by Greg Holt, a youth director at First Congregational United Church of Christ in Waterloo).  In a couple of meetings with Greg, I suggested to him that we should conclude our presentation with hope and trust even right after seeing the tragedy in Golgotha.  Our hope and trust in God is sometimes not strong enough, but God answers us in a crystal clear way:  the Advent followed by the birth of Jesus, and Lent followed by the rising of Jesus.   

I was so pleased to see the newly decorated welcome board on the side door entrance at our church.  The message on the board read: "Faith is not knowing what the future holds, but knowing who holds the future."  I pray that we can always  live our lives with trust in God no matter where we are or what circumstance we are in.