Scripture: Wisdom of Solomon 3:1-9 This time of year means many things to many people. Today is the Celtic New Year. This means quite a bit to many people, but according to science it is when the night begins to outlast the day. It is no wonder that many spiritual thoughts emerge from this, darkness is overcoming the light. Darkness is a place of fear, and darkness is a place of death. For me this time of year holds its own form of darkness and sadness as my family remembers the passing of my youngest sister around this same time. Because of this I have studied about this time of year and various spiritual aspects of it. I will not go deeply into these because if you are interested in the origins of Halloween you already know it, and if not then you have many excuses for opposing it. My sister died and I was left wondering why, or if there was any point, I saught my answer in my faith. Around this date there are pagan and Christian holy days. Of course there are many that oppose Halloween because of the pagan aspects and others are just as upset at the Christians jumping into the mix. This is a season where the dead are honored, because they are remembered more easily in our thoughts and dreams. There is more to this, nearly every religion believes in some form of life beyond death. Nearly every religion? I would go even beyond that and say all but one religion believes in an after life, and most involved in that one religion would be upset for me to call it a religon because they claim to be opposed to all religion. Which in itself could be defined as a religion or at least a world view. So the majority of humans believe in something beyond our life here on earth in some form, they differ in this belief but the idea remains that someting continues. Death can be a depressing thought or one that is celebrated. Many believe that we are caught in an infinate process of replaying life, others believe that there is one life then judgement. I do not want to tell you which is right or wrong because scientifically it cannot be proven and my belief comes through my world view. My view is that we live once and face judgment. Beyond that I cannot say anymore because to relive life continuously in a sense sounds like judgement. But I find hope in these words, “But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God, and no torment will ever touch them.” If we live a righteous life now, we will not face torment later. The foolish it says think that death is an affliction and destruction, so in the mind of the foolish the presence of death is torment or judgment. Why would the foolish see death in that way? Could it be because they have nothing to live for but their own life, and that fails them? Yet even subscibers to that worldview have aspects of themselves that live beyond death. Their ideas, values and offspring live on. Tomorrow (November 1) is a holy day for many churches, All Saints Day. It is a day of honoring the many saints that lived before us. It is funny that on this day and the next day, All souls, are days used to remind us of power of God over darkness, and the hope we have through Christ. We remember the trials of their life and the words that they spoke and the hope they brought. What a powerful testomony and Holy Day. Those that have passed beyond that veil truly are influencing our lives even today. As you pray over the next few day I encourage you to think of those influencial people in your life. Remember those golden aspects of their lives that give you hope, and thank God for them. As you pray I encourage you to consider your own life as well, what life and legacy are you leaving for those that follow? Today we celebrate the lengthening nights but the night does not last, their is a new day and the light that enlightens all men has come into the world. Let us become children of the Light and sing praises to our Creator, Saviour, and ever present Teacher.