31 July 2013

New Lutheran Quote of the Day

In the Lord's Supper the boundaries of space and time are overcome. Heaven and earth become one, the inseparable interval that separates the present moment of the church from the future kingdom of God is bridged.—Hermann Sasse, The Lord's Supper in the New Testament.

Old Lutheran Quote of the Day

My God, You continue my life from day to day, in order that I may prepare myself for eternity and yield my soul to You as Your possession and dwelling. You have created me for a life without end. You are not willing that I should perish, but that I should repent and live. Grant that I may employ this day in working out my own salvation in fear and trembling.—Starck's Prayer Book, p. 26.

Patristic Quote of the Day

O Lord our God, we believe in You, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. For the Truth would not say, Go, baptize all nations in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, unless You were a Trinity. Nor would you, O Lord God, bid us to be baptized in the name of Him who is not the Lord God. Nor would the divine voice have said, Hear, O Israel, the Lord your God is one God, unless You were so a Trinity as to be one Lord God. And if You, O God, were Yourself the Father, and were Yourself the Son, Your Word Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit your gift, we should not read in the book of truth, God sent His Son; nor would You, O Only-begotten, say of the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in my name; and, Whom I will send to you from the Father. —St. Augustine, On the Trinity, Book XV, Chapter 28

30 July 2013

New Lutheran Quote of the Day

We step into the water as isolated individuals; we rise reborn into God’s family, placed by God into Life Together.—Dr. Steven Mueller, Essay at the 2013 Convention of the LCMS

Old Lutheran Quote of the Day

From the moment mankind fell, the reason for man's destruction has been that he wants to be his own lord.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 617.

Patristic Quote of the Day

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.  This is the righteousness of God, which was veiled in the Old Testament, and is revealed in the New; and it is called the righteousness of God, because by His bestowal of it He makes us righteous, just as we read that salvation is the Lord's, because He makes us safe. And this is the faith from which and to which it is revealed,— from the faith of them who preach it, to the faith of those who obey it. By this faith of Jesus Christ— that is, the faith which Christ has given to us— we believe it is from God that we now have, and shall have more and more, the ability of living righteously; wherefore we give Him thanks with that dutiful worship with which He only is to be worshipped.—St. Augustine, Letter and the Spirit, par. 18

29 July 2013


Cindi posted this to my FB page and I think it's pretty accurate:

Myths about Introverts

It cracks me up because most folks simply don't get that about me at all. I've heard more than one person exclaim: "You? No way!" But it's very true. Read the above and let me assure that that's a very on target description.

Synodical convention was quite taxing that way; you're rarely alone. But you see, we have our little coping mechanism. We withdrawn into ourselves and the world just becomes a noisy blur, background noise, and we concentrate on something else. The huge blessing at this convention was being able to pray for the intentions that were constantly pouring in. That took lots of time and it was a blessed relief to just withdraw and lift up those concerns. For the introvert, those moments are to us what a resting stroke is to a swimmer. They enable you to go back to the power stroke, back out to the fray. They energize.

I remember my sister observing this long before I understood what was going on. When the family got together, she remarked, I'd hang out for a while and then go be by myself for a while, and then pop back in again. I could never just stay with the group the whole time.

So, yeah, weird as it sounds: where's the perfect vacation? Home! What's the perfect get together? Small, no more than three or four friends. What's the perfect day? A day when you have vast amounts of time to yourself or only with family and close friends.

Big gatherings like Convention ARE a lot of fun and I love seeing and meeting the people - but rather than being pumped by that interaction, it drains. And so off for the spot of quiet, of alone time. And then, invariably refreshed, back to the fray!

27 July 2013

If your congregation is vacant or calling...

...you really need to know about this site:

Lost Pastors

Remember and never forget: your District President can suggest names for your congregation, but he cannot forbid your congregation from calling any person who is eligible for call in the Synod. Let's drop the asinine political games and give the complete list of eligible men to EVERY vacant/calling congregation.

Thank you, Pr. Ken Kelly for your caring and valuable work on behalf of our many pastors who are without call, but eligible and eager to serve.

26 July 2013

From Office of National Mission...

Well, that was interesting

Convention worship was a great joy.  Working with these topnotch musicians could certainly become addictive!  Before time dulls memory, Sandy and I need to set down in print everything we learned that will be helpful next time round. Little things like insisting that Worship needs Internet access and printer access; bigger things like making sure we have sufficient numbers of backups to cover for people who cannot be present due to last minute emergencies.  High point to me was unquestionably the start, the Holy Eucharist, though commemoration of the faithful departed and service of baptismal remembrance ran close seconds.  More than one person complained to me about the way we shortened certain of the liturgies to accommodate more time for business, but despite that the services still largely stood in their integrity and that's a good thing, I think.

17 July 2013

I've never been one for jigsaw puzzles...

...but that's how things feel in preparation for the convention at the moment. All the pieces are here. Tomorrow we start piecing some of them together. Friday we do even more. By Saturday, we should have a decent chancel for the Worship and a chapel where prayer can be offered and penitents absolved during the week. Whew!!!

Today's Catechesis

Catechesis on 2nd Petition of the Lord’s Prayer: Thy Kingdom Come

Reading: Galatians 5:16-25

It’s a battle of the Kingdoms. The Kingdom of this world as it now is. The Kingdom of God as this world will finally be at Christ’s return. You heard St. Paul describe them in the reading. The one characterized by works of the flesh: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality (living for pleasure, hedonism), idolatry (trying to squeeze eternal life out of the stuff of this fallen world), sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and (he’s not even giving an exhaustive list!) things like these. That’s the world we live in. That’s the world that lives in us all since the Fall.

But the world that will be, the Kingdom that is coming? The fruits of the Spirit characterize it: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.

The Kingdom that is coming and that will be the future of this world, made its beach-head into the Kingdom of darkness at the incarnation of our Lord Jesus. There for the first time in human flesh was a person who literally LIVED the fruits of the Spirit without ceasing. Flawlessly.  From conception to death and so from death to resurrection! And from the resurrection the Kingdom expanded and grew. And that growth comes in two ways.

First, it grows by new folks being added to it through the Spirit’s work. They receive the gift of faith, and are baptized and the Church grows. That’s how it has expanded through the whole world and how it continues to expand.

But the second way the Kingdom grows is INSIDE you. For that’s where the battle rages. As long as you live in your fallen flesh, the works of the flesh will continue to try to erupt in your life and disrupt your enjoyment of the Kingdom of God, to destroy the fruits of the Spirit in your life. And in just the same way the Kingdom of God in your life, planted into you at your baptism, engages in an non-stop war against the passions and evil works of your flesh. They never make peace with each other. The one means the death of the other. To be a Christian is to live in this battle.

Now there are some Lutherans who will tell you that there is no progress in the Christian life, no growth in sanctification. But this is false and it is a lie. Luther in the Large Catechism on Baptism describes the ongoing struggle that Christians engage by the Spirit against the flesh, and he speaks of ever increasing in the fruits of the Spirit and ever diminishing in the works of the flesh. To be sure, it is a battle that proceeds in much weakness and with many setbacks, but it presses on relentlessly to the final victory at the Resurrection. Where this isn’t happening, Luther observes that Baptism isn’t being put to use but resisted.

Yet here is an oft-overlooked truth: this new life of the Spirit isn’t given to you piece-meal. It is given whole. When you were baptized you received the very righteousness of Christ, His flawless obedience to the law, as your very own. It’s the Lord’s gift to you. What you grow in is in your living out from that gift more and more, and less and less from the old Kingdom, the Kingdom and works of the flesh.

But this is impossible by your own strength and power. It can only happen by the Holy Spirit. And so the petition: “thy Kingdom come.” That’s your prayer that the Kingdom would increase in this world by gathering others into it, and that’s your prayer that the Kingdom would expand in YOUR life, so that by the gift of the Holy Spirit you believe God’s holy Word and lead a godly life here in time and there in eternity.

That is, when we pray the Second Petition, you ask that by the Spirit’s power your life would become ever more and more filled with the God’s own love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. That’s the Kingdom that WILL be the future of this world at the return of Christ. Thy Kingdom come asks for nothing less that that future gift to grow in your life now. May God grant it to us all!

09 July 2013

Home again

Well, we had a really nice long trip. Cindi, Bekah, Shawn and I headed out of here on June 28 before sunrise. We drove straight through to Maryland and spent the night at Doug and Deb's. Broadhurst family reunion was on Saturday. Early Sunday we headed south to Alexandria for worship at Immanuel, and then sat forever on the beltway as we headed to Sis and Jimmy's. Got to see Tammy and John, JC and Andrew, Brayden and Nicole and Hannah, Maup and Nancy, Jessica and Curtis. Woke up on Monday with a pounding migraine and Cindi drove us down to Lauren's through lots of rain. Finally felt better by day's end. Lots of fun in North Carolina with Sawyer. Dean was away most of week at National Youth Gathering, but he came home Friday night. We dropped in on Jim and Amy, Katie and Dustin and Annalise on Saturday. Sunday was Divine Service and packing up. Monday we started home at 4 a.m. and got home at 7:20 p.m. or so. A whirlwind week, but lots of joy. Still wiped.

Some pics:



06 July 2013

President Harrison re-elected

Congrats to President Harrison upon reelection.  More here