I love to read books and so does my wife. So going to the ½ Price Bookstore is really a nice time. However, we have quite different taste in literature, so she went her way and I went mine. No big deal. You will usually find me in the history section, but I was getting a bit overwhelmed with both current and past historical events. Instead, I went for pure escapism.Read More
At a wedding recently, I told a story about a young couple who were engaged to be married. Here is that story:
The groom to be was a pilot with the Army Air Corp. The bride was a young lady of many skills, which included mechanics and a lathe operator. They were to be married the day before Christmas in 1941.Read More
If you want folks to become a follower of Christ, by being religious, this has some real problems. What I mean to say here is, that religiosity is not the same as a religious faith. But too often, we equate being religious and following Christ as the same thing or at least it is for Christians. This is not necessarily so. In fact, being faithful is more than being religious.
You may have read an article in the August issue of the Connection that introduced something new the Faith Formation team is hosting this year. This Cross+Gen gathering will be a monthly gathering for all ages called GIFT. GIFT will usually take place on the first Sunday of the month (beginning in October) and will be a time for everyone to gather to tell stories and hear God’s story for us. It will be a time to get to know each other and ask questions. We may sing, create, or listen. We might find out that we have something in common with another person. GIFT, or Growing In Faith Together, will hopefully become a gift to you. Every generation has gifts to give and every generation has needs we gift.Read More
One size fits all. This is a lie. There was a day when this was thought to be the case, but with the advent of a consumer’s society and a plethora of options, whether it is in clothing, food, homes, churches, or schools, one size does not fit all.
Men have three well-identified emotions: mad, sad and glad. Yes, this is an oversimplification, but stick with me here. This does not ignore love or numerous other emotional attributes. If you think about it, it is pretty descriptive of men’s emotional landscape. It is kind of like ice cream for dessert, it is all about the amount and not necessarily the presentation or variety.Read More
My niece Rachel died on Saturday, July 7th unexpectedly of a Pulmonary Embolism. There really are no words to describe the pain and loss. So why, you ask am I writing this blog? Because of the why question that is so often asked when it comes, in such a heart-shattering loss.Read More
As a Pastor, the primary source of all of my teaching and preaching comes from the Bible (written Word of God). This should not be a surprise. I hope. The Bible is amazing and I find something new in it every time I read it. I could go into a whole Biblical and Theological explanation about why this happens but just go with me here. It does.
One of the really amazing pieces of this is how God’s love comes to us in so many different and remarkable ways. For many, not all, the Bible seems to be filled with stories of God’s wrath and judgment. A lot of preachers will make that the primary themes of their preaching and teaching. I can understand where this comes from, but to me, it is clearly a limited view of what God says and does in the Bible.
Do you have to be a Christian to show Jesus’ love? Is there such a thing as good or bad Christians? Are some Christians better than other Christians? NO!
Should Christians show Jesus’ love to everyone? Do all Christians sin? Do all Christians follow Christ? Yes, yes and maybe, sometimes, depends!
Where have I seen Jesus’ love? This is still the question we want people to answer and share. I have been doing some serious reading lately, which means my head is in a book; however, I have also tried to go to some movies, especially with my grandchildren.
Recently, during one of the hottest days of the year so far, my wife Jane and I took our grand-daughter Ella to the movie, “The Incredibles 2”. When it is hot out people’s tempers get a bit hot as well and you can imagine trying to maneuver through a parking lot at the theaters with folks especially little ones trying to get in and see the show.Read More
Where did I see Jesus’ love this week? I saw it at a four-year-old’s birthday party. Yes, at a birthday party. The event had kids and adults of nearly all ages. Of course, there was a cake with candles, singing Happy Birthday and tearing into the various gifts.
At the Nebraska Synod Assembly, they asked the candidates for the bishop; “What Biblical story or character best reflects your style of leadership in the church?” The answers were good, but it made me think about what Bible story I would say, reflects my leadership style. So here it is.Read More
As we continue our focus on where did we see Jesus’ love, I would like to talk about where did we see Jesus this week? Many of you have seen the pictures of crying children as they are separated from their parents. I am going to stop here, to remind folks that some will see this blog as political. If you do so and stop reading, I am sorry, because I really want you to hear me out.
I saw God’s love the other day at McDonald’s. Yes, that’s right at McDonald’s. It involved a child, a panhandler and a happy meal.
I am not a big fan of those who are panhandling on our streets and in public places. In part because there are many places that offer these folks help, and they are not taking advantages of the help that is offered. Also many, but not all, are seeking money that they spend on things that are not food, shelter or clothing, which adds to their struggles. However, this is not the point of my story.Read More
Where do we see Jesus’ love at work? My work is here at St. Paul’s. I am lucky to have the opportunity to see folks of all ages sharing the love of God in word and deed. Sometimes, though, an unexpected gift of love comes my way.
This is the 25th anniversary of St Paul’s participation in Habitat for Humanity (Faithful Builders Coalition of 11 churches). The new house will be built at 13956 Hickory Circle.
Registration will be done online. To register, visit: https://habitatomaha.org/volunteernow/and use registration code: fb2018 For those that would provide food for St. Paul’s food day of August 4th, please e-mail email@example.com or call Jerry at 402-850-0027 and leave a message.Read More
This summer we are once again taking out mini-Jesus and sharing “Jesus on the Go!” this time with a different subtext: “Where do we see Jesus’ Love?”
As a storyteller, I am constantly looking and listening for stories that I can share in my sermons, in Bible studies or devotions. Because it is summer and we are generally outside, it made sense to talk about seeing God’s Love in nature or creation. What came to my mind immediately was not a beautiful Spring Day, but rather a December blizzard.Read More
Have you noticed that people are tired? They are tired of the weather, the news, the drama, and tired of being tired! Maybe it is culture that is moving so quickly that we find it hard to keep up, and we feel wore out. Maybe the expectations of others, who, whether at work, home or play call for us to be high performing. Maybe I am just getting old, but I see this in folks much younger than I am. I see it in kids!Read More
The plan was to go up north the first week of April and intern my mother’s ashes. Frost on the ground, muddy roads in the cemetery and, of course, foul weather have all put a hold on that event. I will admit I am upset by this. It is an important part of putting closure on my mom’s life here on earth. Then it dawned on me (I should have realized this earlier, I am a pastor) but she is not here, she is in heaven.Read More
Failure to part is what it means to be a follower of Christ. Yes, you heard me. When we fail, we also succeed. Jesus said it better: “In this world, you must lose your life to gain it and those who wish to cling to life will lose it.”Read More