Upcoming Events

View Full Calendar

Support MLC

getting out the WORD - the 8th sunday after pentecost
Written by Pastor Bob   
Wednesday, 02 August 2017 12:10

the PRAYER...
Beloved and sovereign God, through the death and resurrection of your Son you bring us into your kingdom of justice and mercy. By your Spirit, give us your wisdom, that we may treasure the life that comes from Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

the READING...
So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth...

Matthew 13:31-33 , Matthew 13:44-52

the DEVOTION...
From all the billboards and bumper stickers, you'd think it's a done deal! "Eternity is Hell without Jesus," they say! "Heaven or Hell - it's your choice!" And so, like a moth, every time I read this passage, I'm drawn to the fire and to the weeping and the gnashing! But it's kind of funny. It's all, pretty much, unique to Matthew and Matthew alone...

Right from the start, Matthew's "gospel" is full of separations! Fruitful trees from unfruitful! Grain from chaff! Always two groups; an eternal either/or. Wheat and weeds! Good fish, bad fish! Sheep, goats! Matthew draws a line in the sand. And when he does, he draws it straight and he draws it deep.

So sometimes, every now and then, it's good, after reading a passage, just to sit back, relax, and remember... The truth-whole-truth-and-nothing-but isn't about the outer darkness! Or unquenchable fire. It's about Jesus! Sun-rising-on-evil-and-good Jesus! Rain-falling-on-righteous-and-not Jesus! Gift! Unearned! Undeserved! When you get right down to it, the bible doesn't say a whole lot about heaven OR hell! But it speaks volumes about god's love... in, with, and under Jesus! So help us god!

Bob Barndt, pastor

 
getting out the WORD - the 6th sunday after pentecost
Written by Pastor Bob   
Wednesday, 19 July 2017 08:52

the PRAYER...
Almighty God, we thank you for planting in us the seed of your word. By your Holy Spirit help us to receive it with joy, live according to it, and grow in faith and hope and love, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

the READING...
That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea... .

Matthew 13:1-9 , Matthew 13:18-23

the DEVOTION...
It must be time... FOR A VACATION! To get out, get away! Seems all I've been thinking about, lately, are mountains... and forests... and lakes... and streams... All the things we don't have much of here in West Texas! So, I guess it should come as no surprise that the verse that caught my attention, this week, was the very first; the one about Jesus going out of the house and sitting by the sea!

So much of Jesus' ministry happens in the "wide open!" You can't tell the story, it seems, without it! But I can't help but think there's more to it than circumstance; that somehow "going out of the house and sitting by the sea" isn't a part of it all! Then, a few days ago, I tripped over a quote by Archie Ammons, an American poet, my dad's age. "In nature," he wrote, "there are few sharp lines!"

As people, we live in a world of lines, drawn straight and deep. Lines separating up and down, splitting left and right, isolating inside from out. But then, that's the same way we love, isn't it! By drawing lines! But none of that exists outside the house... sitting by the sea... So maybe Jesus isn't there out of coincidence. Or because he wasn't allowed in the synagogue. Or, even, because the crowds were, just, too big. Maybe he's there because it's the best place to talk about a love - that just like nature - has no sharp lines!

Bob Barndt, pastor

 
getting out the WORD - the 5th sunday after pentecost
Written by Pastor Bob   
Wednesday, 12 July 2017 19:23

the PRAYER...
You are great, O God, and greatly to be praised. You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you. Grant that we may believe in you, call upon you, know you, and serve you, through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

the READING...
At that time Jesus said, "I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants..."

Matthew 11:16-19 , Matthew 11:25-30

the DEVOTION...
"Of all the paths you take in life," said John Muir, founder of the Sierra Club, "make sure a few of them are dirt!" And most of my life, I've done my best to follow that advice! "The mountains are calling and I must go!"

But when I take to the dirt, there's a difference, whether I go alone or with others. When I hike by myself, I'm the one who sets the pace. Quick! Slow! Stop! Go! I choose! But when I'm with others, it's the slowest hiker who sets the pace for the entire group! Period! End of discussion! That's the only way to ensure no one's left behind! The only way everyone gets back in one piece!

And that's the rule of faith, as well. Faith isn't an individual pursuit, a prize that awaits the fastest or the strongest or the bravest - or, even, the wisest and most intelligent. Faith is the reason we look to the lowest and the least among us! Not just because that's what Jesus did, what Jesus still does. But because, you see, if they make it across the finish line, we know we'll all be there!

Bob Barndt, pastor

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > End >>

Page 7 of 114
Copyright © 2017 Midland Lutheran Church , 2705 West Michigan, Midland, TX 79701 (432) 694-1373
RocketTheme Joomla Templates