Peaceful Valley community center kids were at All Saints today from 0730-1200. Exciting to have them with us, there were no incidents or problems of any kind. Great group, with wonderful leaders! Look forward to having them each Friday now for rest of the summer and of course when the center moves in permanently!
How are we doing? Good question … what do you think? I have my opinions, of course, as Pastor I should. But those are mine … I want to hear yours. Are we doing the ministry of the kingdom of God? Are we declaring how much God has done for us; as Jesus told the healed Gerasene Demoniac to do? Is All Saints poised, by faith and in acceptance of grace, to move into the next ten or twenty years? Things are different in the church; so different in fact, that we are up against an unprecedented time of renewal … What are we doing in our role as church to get ready?
We become “New Beings” when we realize, accept and believe that we want to be part of the radical change that Jesus represents. This acceptance comes with risk and cost, we risk our relationship with the world by knowing that much of what the world calls good is an illusion, the cost is our commitment to carry out the commands of Jesus in the face of a world that, more and more, is enticing us to do something else. We believe in the mystery and share in the work of God’s Kingdom, knowing that we are blessed in order to be given.
You may be worried that massive change may wind up making you unrecognizable. A valid concern, after all, I have worked hard to make something of myself and I want to keep it! Well the good news is; you will always be the child of God you were created as and God will always know that. On the other hand we must change along with life and the world we find ourselves a part of. We must be open to change and to look at things differently as we proceed with the future. Recognizing that we are an integral part of this world and what we say and do does make a difference. We do not live in a vacuum and cannot expect to simply exist without impact. The phrase “EVERYTHING must change” … should be on your mind at all times, subtly working on every thing you do, shaping and directing, leading you into a richer, deeper, fuller experience of creation. You are a wonderful expression of all that you have been a part of over your whole life and now, to know that you have some control you must decide to be proactive in your relationships and interactions with the world and its people. The combined influence of all of us will determine where we go and how things will look in the future. The creator is our partner in the change that will inevitably come … your decision is how will your participation look?
I hope you all have put some thought into “change” and maybe even a little thought into the “why” behind the need. I’ll try to be brief. The “why” in my opinion revolves around the way in which we as Americans “see” our life. Life in America is all about “stuff” we buy stuff and sell stuff …invent stuff and make stuff, and the marketing of this stuff is what drives the economy that you hear so much about. So in other words … Americans “see” their life as one of accumulation of assets and material stuff. Now I know I am going to take a bunch of criticism from people who will tell me …”My life is not about accumulation”. But I am going to stand by my assessment … We are constantly reminded to buy this or that and to by all means remember to accumulate enough money for retirement … so you can continue to buy even more stuff after you retire. Of course material items in and of themselves are benign, they only serve to fulfill or drive a need, it is the mindset around these things that is the disease that will eventually destroy us. I am going to shut up for now … but I leave those of you who are over 40 with a little test; think back to your grocery store visits of 1980 and compare the number of items on the shelves then with what you see now in 2013. Are there more or less items now?
Sometimes I think I should just publish some of my ideas and ramblings. Just reading a book by Brian McLaren titled “everything must change” and it’s filled with ideas, thoughts and information that I have literally been thinking about for YEARS … Mr. McLaren put it into a book … probably better that he did than me, since he is a well known author more people will read it than if I had published my thoughts. The point IS THIS … things must change and we have a plan … now let’s see if anyone will not only listen but implement!
All Saints Lutheran will host a memorial service for “Pops” today. We will celebrate his life and remember his legacy of care, and his enthusiasm for music.
Dumb question you suppose? Ready for what you ask? Well obviously I didn’t say … that’s the point. That just maybe there isn’t any way for you to answer. However … you may assume that since this post is from the Pastor that I might want to know if you’re ready for Sunday service; for example, did you read the texts for the week ahead of time, do you have questions etc.
Or it could be that I want to know if you are ready to meet God … after all that’s part of what being a Christian is … isn’t it?
Are you ready to love your neighbor? To care for the sheep that Jesus left us? To visit the sick and those in prison? In other words …
TO BE A COMMUNITY THAT IS WITNESS TO THE CROSS
Are you ready for that?
Bible study is offered at 9 am on Sunday mornings and 11:30 am on the second
Wednesday each month, both in the fireside room at All Saints. We also offer
a “new members” class that meets at noon on Sundays in Epiphany and Lent
seasons. This class is for folks new to the Lutheran tradition and for anyone who
wants to know more!
We have a traditional
service including varying liturgy and music components. Scripture is read and
a sermon offered. We sing the old and new hymns of the church and celebrate
Holy Communion every week and the table is open for all.