Welcome: We’re here to remember, celebrate and memorialize the
life of Wilbert A. Pontinen. Thank you all for coming.
Prayer: Let’s begin with prayer and then one of Bill’s son’s,
Larry is going to come and share some thoughts and reflections.
Reading: Ecclesiastes 3
These words were penned by a man who had it all and yet was on a great
quest for meaning. The whole book of Ecclesiastes is like a journal of
that search. In it we come across words like:
“Endings are better than beginnings.”
“‘Sticking to it’ is better than starting out.”
“Life, lovely while it lasts, is soon over.”
“Life as we know it, precious and beautiful, ends.”
“The body is put back in the same ground it came from, the spirit returns
to God, who first breathed it.”
Life offers many opportunities to stop and reflect on issues that are
truly important to us.
If Solomon, the writer of Ecclesiastes, were here I think he’d
advise us to pay attention to the thoughts going through our minds, the
feelings going through our hearts., the emotions going through our souls.
What rises to the surface in us when we lose a loved one?
It is wise to pay attention to your memories
• Memories are intensely personal - milestones
• They are a balancing factor in our lives
• They add colour to our pasts and help shape our futures
• Each of us have our own and we each carry them with us .. not living for
them but by them ...
Pay attention to these memories
• Take time to reflect and remember and then when we leave here today we
leave behind a physical reminder - a “stone of remembrance”
• We can say with the Apostle Paul, “I thank my God for every remembrance
of you, for you have a very special place in my heart.”
It is wise to pay attention to the realities of the moment
• While we may have known this day would come there is always the sense
of never really being prepared ...yet, as we just read in Ecclesiastes
“To everything there is a season
a time to be born and a time to die”
This passage expresses clearly the realities of life and death so this
moment is no surprise to God. Remember Job in the Old Testament asked
God if he had our days numbered to which God replied, “Yes, you
have an appointed number of days with limits beyond which you cannot
A sobering thought indeed but also an encouraging one: Psalm 90:12 - “teach
us to number our days, that we might gain a heart of wisdom”
If we’re paying attention to the realities of the moment we ask
ourselves “are we living in light of days that have limits? are
we trusting and depending on God for all of our moments?
If so, then in the face of these realities .. there is no need to fear,
no need to be afraid
If this is the God we know ... one whose love casts out fear, hope lights
the darkness, peace brings understanding, grace forgives any sin we could
ever conjure up, then we can all sing these words:
Be still, my soul: The Lord is on they side.
Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In every change, He faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: they best, thy heavenly Friend
Through thorny ways lead to a joyful end.
Be still, my soul: they god doth undertake
To guide the future, as He has the past.
They hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: the waves and winds still know
His voice Who ruled them while He dwelt below.
Be still, my soul: when dearest friends depart,
And all is darkened in the vale of tears,
Then shalt thou better know His love, His heart,
Who comes to soothe thy sorrow and they fears.
Be still, my soul: thy Jesus can repay
From His own fullness, all he takes Away
1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under
2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to
pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time
to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a
time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast
7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
9 What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth?
10 I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to
be exercised in it.
11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set
the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God
maketh from the beginning to the end.
12 I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and
to do good in his life.
13 And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of
all his labour, it is the gift of God.
14 I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can
be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men
should fear before him.
15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already
been; and God requireth that which is past.
16 And moreover I saw under the sun the place of judgment, that wickedness
was there; and the place of righteousness, that iniquity was there.
17 I said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked:
for there is a time there for every purpose and for every work.
18 I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that
God might manifest them, and that they might see that they themselves
19 For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one
thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they
have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast:
for all is vanity.
20 All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.
21 Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of
the beast that goeth downward to the earth?
22 Wherefore I perceive that there is nothing better, than that a man
should rejoice in his own works; for that is his portion: for who shall
bring him to see what shall be after him?
... Bill Pontinen's wife, Jane
Arrangements are with the Historic Thomson-Dougherty