Sunday September 24, 2017
Jacob's Dream (Genesis 27: 1-4, 15-23; 28: 10-17
As you are reflecting on the story of Jacob, I hope that you have read what comes before, what is missing and what comes after the reading for last Sunday.
What are the questions that have come up for you as you read?
I find this story interesting because God had already stated that Jacob would be the one to "rule over the younger" and yet Rebekkah and Jacob go about making sure that it happens through their own trickery and diceit. Did they not trust that God would be true to God's word?
Can you think of a time when you did not trust in God's providing and pushed for the outcome as you desired? How did that work out?
God's Story,Our Story
Sunday, September 17th, 2017
This past Sunday we heard the story of Abraham and Isaac. This is a difficult story to hear. Our worship resource from Clergy Stuff asks the question:
How does this story feel?
When I read through the story, my first reaction was, "how" How could Abraham make himself walk up that mountain? How could he place his son on the alter?
The more I read over the story and saw the trust that Abraham had, the trust that the Lord would provide, the more I wondered about my own trust. Do I trust God will provide?
I know there have been times in my life where I have been afraid of what was to come next. I have tried to rely on my own strength, my ability to control (or illusion there of) the situation. Sometimes it has worked and the outcome seems favorable. Sometimes I have had to let go and trust that God would be with me in the situation and circumstance. And though I might not have liked what was going on, God was there guiding along the way. Of course, I didn't always see that until hind sight kicked in.
Can you recall a time that you let go and trusted God? Can you recall a time that you tried to do it on your own strength? What was that like for you? How did they differ?
Are there things in your life that you need to trust to God now?
Shalom (which means wholeness and well being be with you)
I look forward to the conversation!
God's Story Our Story
Sunday, Sept. 10th we heard the Creation Story.
Our question in the resource from Clergy Stuff is, What does it mean to that you are created in God's image? What about yourself reminds you of God?
The Story we heard from Max Lucado talked about the light of God being put within us. This is what it means to me to be created in God's image. In a culture that gets hung up on outward images, I think it is important to remember that what is within us defines us more than what is on the outside. Our thoughts, our compassion, our empathy. The way we use these parts of ourselves, reflect the way we respond to God's light.
So what does it mean to you that you are created in God's image? I look forward to the conversation!!
It has been another full and glorious day! I cannot describe to you all the joy that is found rejoicing and lamenting together with the whole church family over the things that God is calling us to and that God is calling us from. I pray that you will find time to check out the ELCA website and watch the recaps from the days, or join us for worship. We will worship again tomorrow at 11am. My children, my father and Justin all saw me in worship today! It is good to worship here in this place, but to know that we are worshiping with others all over the world is awe inspiring. Knowing that the Spirit binds us together. Because: Together we are Church.
This is one of the initiatives of the ELCA: We are church together for the Sake of the World. That continues to be more and more evident as we talk about the ways that God is calling us to live out our calls where we are, but connected through resources, connected in mission, connected in Christ. And how together we can and are accomplishing so much more. (More to come in further conversations: examples of how we can make a big difference together in ways we couldn't do alone.) In 2 Corinthians 5:17 we hear "So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!" Christ breathes new life in us, and calls us together as the body of Christ.
We are called to be reconciled in Christ, reconciled to each other. Embracing our differences, celebrating our unique gifts, holding and honoring the tensions that exist so that we can see one another as the child of God we have been created to be, so that we can see Christ in each other and we can be Christ for each other, boldly living out a love that makes no worldly sense, but has the power to change the world.
It is an honor and a privilege to serve God and to walk with you all on this journey! I look forward to sharing more....... but now, like all my electronics ;) it is time to recharged. Until tomorrow....
In Christ's Love,
I know I am not at Disney World, but the theme for today is that song, "It's A Small World" I'll explain in a bit.....
I do not know where to begin and because of that I am going to be brief tonight. It was a busy day. I was grateful that I flew out yesterday since I am flying on Delta. I feel for all those who had to deal with the delays and switches.
Today was a day of preparing for the business at hand, meeting new friends, and getting re-aquainted with friends, collegues and classmates I have not seen in a while. The ELCA is a small world, and having had the opportunity to serve in it for sixteen years is awesome to see family I haven't seen in while.
There is so much more I want share with you about today, but it is now 11:30pm and we begin again @ 8am, so I will take time tomorrow to compose my thoughts and share more about today.
Churchwide is being live streamed which you can get to it by clicking here
I would especially encourage you to join us for worship. Tomorrow, August 9th, it is at 11am.
I look forward to sharing more with you soon.
In Christ's Love,
After a long day of travel, I am here in the fine city of New Orleans. The hospitality that we have been greeted with is humbling and inspiring. I am looking forward to spending the next 7 days not only in worship and working with my Lutheran family, but getting to know and experience the charm and spirit of this city and the people who make it happen. And I pray as we live, learn, pray, work and play together, that we would be the church that lives out what I have experienced so far from our gracious hosts, All Are Welcome Here.
In Christ's Love,
Prepare, Pack and Pray
Not necessarily in that order. As I prepare to take off for New Orleans, I covet your prayers. Prayers for the work that is to be done at Churchwide. Prayers for the leadership of the ELCA, the Synods, the Pastors, and the Disciples who will be representing their congregations. That our hearts will be open to God's word for us and how we are being drawn together in mission for the sake of the world.
Prayers for my family and I as we are apart. Prayers for the journey. Prayers for the people of New Orleans as they welcome us into their city and we learn from one another.
And I will be praying for you, and all the ways that you too are preparing. As these days of summer draw to a close, and we prepare for harvest, school, the changing season.
I look forward to sharing this journey with you.