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McCoy: Passing it on
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May the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ be blessed! He is the compassionate father and God of all comfort. He's the one who comforts us in all our trouble so that we can comfort other people who are in every kind of trouble.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (Common English Bible)

It's the beginning of cold and flu season. The weather is starting to cool off a bit. The leaves are on the verge of changing. Soon it will be October, and time for all the festivities of Fall Fests, Change the World Day, and pumpkins. I love fall weather and the colors that remind us that there are seasons and cycles to life.

Just as there are cycles to the physical world around us, our emotional world also has cycles. Some days are brighter and cheerier than others. Some days, we find ourselves remembering and missing those we love who are no longer with us, and so we are sad. During those sad times of remembering, the peace of Christ can come to us and bring us comfort.

Why are we comforted in our sad or lonely times? So that we can comfort others. Paul reminds us in the passage above that God comforts us in all our times of trouble so that we can be a comfort for others. We are the hands and feet of the invisible God, and we share God's love with others in how we live and in how we reach out to help others.

On Saturday, Oct. 13, people all around Newton County will gather on the lawn of Covington First United Methodist Church for "Change the World" day - a day set aside to share God's love with others in very visible ways. Beginning with a 5K and Fun Run, we will spend the day doing fun things, raising money for missions, and actually doing missions by helping to refurbish and spruce up Academy Springs Park. It will be a day of caring and sharing that I hope you will not miss.

But organized efforts are not the only way to reach out to others. We reach out to others every day in the words we say and by our actions. Some people will only know that God loves them when we reach out to them, listen to them, and share our own story of how God loves us all. When we take time to listen to others, we pass along the love of Christ. When we take time to love and help others, we pass on the God's love.

Remember the old song we used to sing in the 70s and 80s - Pass it on? "It only takes a spark to get a fire going, and soon all those around can warm up in its glowing. That's how it is with God's love once you've experienced it, you want to sing, it's fresh like spring, you want to pass it on." Will you be the spark to light the fire of the love of Christ in those around you? Will you bring comfort to others as you pass on God's love?

Rev. Jan McCoy is the associate pastor of Covington First United Methodist Church in downtown Covington. She may be reached at