Pastor's Desk
September 25, 2017, 11:17 AM

Friends

Dear friends in Christ Jesus,
With the recent devastation that hurricanes Harvey and Irma have left in their wake, we have many LCMC congregations in great need.  Here are some ways that we as the body of Christ can do to lend a hand.

First of all, we all can pray for God to have mercy on those who have been affected by these tragic events.  Thank God for the miraculous preservation of so many lives.  Pray for a speedy and full recovery, that families, homes, businesses, schools and communities can come back stronger and better than ever. 

We can also support congregations and individuals by making an offering to LCMC Disaster Assistance Fund.  Funds can be sent directly to:  LDA, C/O St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 8300 C Avenue NW, Marion, IA 52302. 

There are also opportunities to volunteer with the relief and recovery efforts.  A recovery center at Our Savior’s Lutheran in Victoria TX is coordinating the efforts of volunteers in the gulf coastal area of TX.  In the Houston area, North American Lutheran Church is setting up a recovery center in the suburb of Rosenberg and will warmly welcome your help.  Also the LCMC Texas District has established a Facebook group to be an online message board to help coordinate recovery efforts:  www.facebook.com/groups/LCMCHurricaneHarvey .  The goal is to connect those who want to help with those who need it most.  If you can assist in any way, communicate that on the message board and be specific with when and what help you are prepared to provide.  As needs are identified by our congregations, new opportunities to serve will be posted.  

With this stressful time, we remember that we are ambassadors of Jesus as we minister to and among those who are suffering.  WE are called to bring a message and spirit of hope, love and thanksgiving even in the midst of despair.  Please continue to pray for God to have mercy and to give strength to those who are suffering. Please pray for God to use those of us who aren’t suffering to give aid to those who are.  Let’s be the hands and feet of Jesus to our neighbors in need.   More information is also on the LCMC website. May God bless Texas!

Pr. Gran




August 28, 2017, 10:12 AM

Friends

Dear friends in Christ Jesus,

As our communities grieve the death of a nine-year-old boy from the Brandon area, it brings to mind some of the misunderstandings people have about angels.  At the time of death, people do not become angels.  God has created angels (Job 38:4-7) and He has created human beings;  the soul of a Christian will be in the very presence of almighty God, but not as an angel.

An angel is a messenger of God, who ministers on God’s behalf.  When Jesus faced His ordeal in the garden of Gethsemane Luke says, “An angel from heaven appeared to Him and give Him strength” (Luke 22:43).  Jesus was facing His own certain death.  His disciples had fallen asleep and His world seemed dark.  God sent an angel to give Him strength.         

God did not send an angel to make Jesus smile.  God did not send an angel to explain away His doubts.  God did not send an angel to “make it all better,” or to take away the burden Jesus faced.  God’s messenger came to give Jesus strength.                 

When Mary was frightened by the fact that she was pregnant and unmarried, an angel of God came to bring her strength.  When Joseph wondered if he should “divorce” Mary, an angel of God came to reassure Mary’s child was of the Holy Spirit.  When the women stumbled into the empty tomb on Easter morning, it was an angel, a messenger of God, who strengthened them with the words, “Do not be afraid. He is risen as He said.  Go!  Tell the others.  Christ is alive!”

Strength-giving angels may or may not always come to us as dramatically as in these stories.  But they do and will still come in times of need.  It may be the one who holds us when we weep or the one who stands with us in times of trIal.  It may be the one who listens or holds our hand, to strengthen us when we need it the most.                                                                                  

We certainly pray that God’s holy angels will minister to those who grieve the loss of a loved one to give them strength and peace.  We pray for those who are facing difficult times in their lives.  We pray that the LORD our God will give us the wisdom to accept the gracious aid of angels in our midst.     

Worship is at 8:30 and 11:00 every Sunday rain or shine.  I plan to be there.  I hope you do too.                                                              

Pr. Gran