Tuesday, July 30, 2019
Our Father Knows Best
Many years ago on black and white TV there was a program called “Father Knows Best”.
Actor Robert Young portrayed a father of a family as they faced various family issues.
Unfortunately, in a humorous way the father usually was the confused one and the family solved their situations without him.
Fortunately, our Heavenly Father is not like those often portrayed on TV. He really does know best. He loves us each personally so much that He had a plan of salvation for us through His grace. He allowed His Son, Jesus, to pay for our sins so that we can be assured of an eternal, blessed relationship with Him.
In the meantime He laid down rules and directions that would allow us to live to glorify Him and promote peaceful relationship with fellow humans here on earth. He gave us the Ten Commandments. Martin Luther , as he studied Holy Scripture, helped us to see how those
Commandments apply to our lives as included in his Small Catechism.
Yet we in our sinfulness often neglect following the guidelines and wind up with complicated lives and situations that lead to despair. In addition Satan pushes the issue and causes us to fall away from our Loving Father. Lives are ruined, families suffer heartache, crime and even death as a result.
You and I as Christians know the solution and the promised outcome for those who choose by the Holy Spirit’s power to know God’s grace and strength. First, the Father offers forgiveness for our sins in His Son’s redemptive death and resurrection . He also promised the strength of His Holy Spirit to empower us to follow a life that grants us peace.
Through the Sacraments He assures us of His grace and by following His Word we have a “peace that passes understanding”. In all circumstances we have the promise that all will work together for our good…maybe not as our sinful finite minds perceive it but will make the difference eternally. Be assured our Heavenly Father does know what is best. Don’t make human understanding your god. The true God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit loves you.
In the months of August-October, the Sunday sermons will feature God’s Commandments in a positive way as we are guided by them. As the Holy Spirit opens our hearts as we listen, we will see God’s eternal love for us in each commandment. Please feel free to invite others.
I pray you will want to review, weekly, His love for you. To His Glory,
Friday, July 19, 2019
FIREWORKS – LORD WORKS
Personally, I enjoy watching fireworks. Besides the magnificence of the color combinations and the excitement involved, I see them as a good symbol of the work of the Holy
Spirit in the hearts of God’s people.
Consider these facts: 1) Fireworks are made by someone; 2)They do not ignite themselves; 3) When they explode they give off light; 4) Often the sparks continue to ignite each other and finally; 5) When no longer in contact with their source, they burn out.
It is the Holy Spirit, who produces the faith in the life of a Christian – new life, as it were. As Ephesians 2:10 reminds us, “We are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus, to do good works. He works through the Word and Sacraments to cause us Christians to be fired up in service and to show God’s glory that others may see and believe. Yet, when no longer connected to the source of power, Christians can “burn out” and no longer reflect God’s glory in their lives. This latter fact is a warning to us as God’s people.
When we neglect hearing God’s Word and receiving the sacrament of His body and blood, our spiritual life can “burn out” and we can easily be lead into despair. Satan uses every means possible, including the world and our own sinful flesh, to draw us away from owning the eternal life given us in Christ’s death and resurrection.
As we enjoy the many blessings God has given us in life, including also the privilege of living in the freedoms we celebrate again on the 4th of July, may we never forget the freedom from eternal hell, purchased by God’s grace through Jesus Christ. May our enjoyments of life never interfere with staying in contact with the Word and Sacrament offered each Sunday. God wants us to worship Him and not become “burned out” on knowing the importance of eternal life in Him and reflecting His message of salvation to others.
Have a blessed summer in the Lord.
Sunday, May 12, 2019
A Special Day in May
Most Christian churches, including Lutheran, follow a pattern in our worship schedule every year. This is commonly called the “Church Year”. You can find a copy of it in the Lutheran Service Book. In the “Church Year” there are various special celebrations which you are very familiar with such a Christmas, Easter, Trinity Sunday, Pentecost, etc., Each Sunday in fact has a designated title. Even as Lutherans we recognize “Saints Days”, not to venerate or in any way to worship them but to call attention to their example , which we as Christians want to follow.
Other special days remind us of events in Biblical history that are important to our faith.
One such event that is commemorated but often overlooked is Ascension Day which this year falls on May 30. It is a “movable feast” day since it falls forty days after the Resurrection (Easter) which is also a “movable feast”. We however will take the opportunity to celebrate it on Sunday, May 26th.
Scripture, under inspiration of the Holy Spirit, denotes that following the Resurrection, Jesus remained on earth for forty days. During that time He showed Himself a number of times to His disciples, not only the original eleven, but to a least five hundred people. His visible contact assured them that He did indeed rise bodily from the grave and that those who believe He died for their sins have eternal life. This message gave them the faith to proclaim Him—the rest is history. We are now part of His holy Christian church.
Ascension Day was the culmination of that forty day period. It was on that day in the sight of His followers that He visibly ascended into heaven. As He did so He gave them (and us) the command to go, teach and baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. He also promised to be with them and all believers (including you and me) until the end of time. This is a promise in which we have assurance and certain hope.
No matter where we are, whatever problems we have, whatever strength we need, He is there for us, to turn all things into good as we love, trust and follow Him. Please look forward to joining together to worship our Risen Lord on May 26th and each Sunday as we continue in the joy that is yours as a member of His Body, the Holy Christian Church.