Weekly Inspirational Reflections from the Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles
February 10, 2021: A Fond Farewell
I am writing this final By God’s Side article to you. Therefore, it is a kind of fond farewell — not goodbye, because I know that God is always doing remarkable things to keep the people of God connected one to another.
I want you to know that, while I can no longer be your pastor, I will always be your friend. I hope this means that you will let me know, from time to time, how things are going with you. I promise that I will do the same. This is no ordinary stroll we are taking.
There was a series of Christian education films created some years ago that was called Begin with Goodbye. The film helped study groups think about the reality that every beginning will have an ending. This is part of life. The important thing is that leg of the journey which we travel together.
Two years ago, you welcomed Judy, Mom, and me with great enthusiasm and joy. I felt exactly the same way. It was a tremendous honor to be arriving to serve you, to share in ministry together, and to anticipate what God had planned for you, next.
We did some things that could have been predicted or anticipated. But no one would have been able to predict a global pandemic and the necessary precautions that ensued. These things happened. Better than saying that they happened, let us also give thanks that, with God’s providence, we have found creative ways to respond to them, and to stay faithful to the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Sunday is Valentine’s Day. I plan to send you a “valentine” of sorts in my sermon. Between now and then, I will be keeping you in my prayers. And after Sunday, my prayers for you will continue, even though I will be elsewhere. My next call is not yet known, but the One who does the calling knows it. May you trust all your tomorrows to God, even as I do.
Thank you and God bless you all, now and always.
“The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you. The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” — Numbers 6:24–26
The Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles
Interim Senior Pastor, Shadyside Presbyterian Church
About Dr. Dalles
Read more about Dr. Dalles.
Watch a brief video introducing a series of conversations with Dr. Dalles.
About By God’s Side
Shadyside Presbyterian Church publishes By God’s Side, a weekly series of inspirational reflections from the Reverend Dr. John A. Dalles, to support you in your spiritual journey. These pastoral messages appear in the blog section of the church website each week. (Our weekly e-newsletter includes an excerpt to remind you to read along with us regularly; click here to subscribe to the e-newsletter if you do not already receive it.) We hope this regular feature will help you to draw closer to God’s side in your life of faith.
Read more reflections by Dr. Dalles from By God’s Side.