Sunday, December 09, 2007

Lutheran Worship

Saying for the Day: We should so fear and love God, so that we do not despise his Word or the preaching of it, but gladly hear and learn it. Martin Luther.

For the last few Sundays I have been writing about worship in general. Today I want to say a little about Lutheran worship.

Lutheran worship is not centered in people.
It is and has been since the beginning centered in the Word of God.
In the small catechism Luther wrote that keeping the Sabbath Holy had to do with hearing and learning God’s word.

We come as the family of God to hear and receive a Word from the Father. The question we come with is “ Does God have a Word for me today?” .

In the service three Scripture passages are read and part of a Psalm. Over a three year cycle all of the important biblical themes are lifted up and a good part of the Bible is read.

But God comes to us not only in the Word read but also in the Word preached. During the week the Pastor has lived with the texts, prayed over the texts, studied the texts, and he or she comes prepared to share with us what God has said to him or her in that study. The Holy Spirit takes that Word and quickens it to us ( makes it come alive).

In addition to the Word read and the Word preached Lutherans believe that we meet the Word made flesh in the miracle of Holy Communion. Here in the Bread and Wine the very Christ who died for us comes now to us . Here we are forgiven, renewed, made alive.

Because of the Word we are free to praise God, to sing hymns, to offer ourselves to Him. But Lutheran Worship always begins in the Word.

#### News from Pigeon Falls-The little town in my basement where the trains still run, dragons fly, and life is back to normal. It is Sunday in Pigeon Falls. In all the churches this morning prayers of thanks that the battle with the ACLU is over will be offered. Pastor Joan will be preaching on the Advent texts. The congregation is called to get ready for the coming Christ. In today’s texts we see Jesus at the darkest of times and we are reminded that in the end Jesus wins. He will carry us through our dark times as well.
Over coffee people commented that it was a pretty heavy sermon for the holiday period. But old Herman Holmes said that a long time ago he heard a preacher say “ I took a look at the end of the book and Jesus wins” and those words have carried him through all the rough spots in his life. The trip is easier if you know where your going.
There was a bit of excitement at the Lutheran service as one of the candles exploded . It looks like somebody had drilled a hole and put a firecracker in the candle. When the candle burned down that far it exploded. Tommy UK was the acolyte this morning but he says he didn’t see any firecracker when he lit the candles.
Brian Johnson who comes to church from second shift at the mine and usually sleeps through most of the service woke up when the candle went off. He seemed to think they were under terrorist attack. He jumped up and if his wife hadn’t grabbed his arm he would have run down the aisle.
Mrs. Jerome Smythe said “ In all my years of going to this Church we have never had anything like this happen. What is the world coming to?”
Tommy UK said he would ask around and try to find out if some kid did it. It might have been one of the other Confirmands.
*******

Today's Link-Andrew M. Greeley Homilies- Some stories by a great writer on the Advent texts.
A very good day today though breathing was a bit difficult. Got to church this morning. It was great to be back after missing last Sunday because of the snow. The Choir did a Christmas Cantata which was great. Just another way the Word is presented. In the afternoon I worked on the layout and Betty wrapped Christmas gifts and watched the Packers win. I told you it was a good day. Now I need a breathing treatment.
GBYA

10 Comments:

Blogger Margaret said...

“Does God have a Word for me today?”

Absolutely. Not all of the time, but there has been many sermons that I felt were targeted right at me. It's amazing when that happens.

6:14 AM  
Blogger Janvangogh said...

Seems one of the first thing the guilty party does is step up and offer to find out who did it. They think it puts the light on someone else.

Of course Tommy didnt "see" the firecracker. It was inside the candle and then the top covered with one of those gold drip caps.

7:11 AM  
Blogger Cindrarella said...

Exploding candles in church? Those darned kids!

I was baptized Lutheran, being of scandinavian descent.

C'mon over to TGQDC when you have time...lotsa good stuff over there. It'll be hard to just choose one!

Again, thanks for your very fun participation and shout outs...you are too kind and talented!

10:45 AM  
Blogger Josie said...

I must admit, I do wonder sometimes if God has a word for me. But when I listen really closely, I think he does. But it does come to me in the strangest ways sometimes.

Thanks for sharing your Christmas tree with us. I LOVE the little train. Only you!

10:53 AM  
Blogger OC or Q said...

Fire crackers in Advent candles -- what kind of mind would even consider such a thing ...?

-Q

11:26 AM  
Blogger QUASAR9 said...

I have only one question

if we have no choice of where and when we are born, and we rarely have any choice of how or when we die - then where is the free will

If free will is simply to accept things as they are - "Thy Will Be Done" - why do we spend so much time trying to change the nature of things, and so much time on research on how to prolong life.

Mind you, I guess the 'deceiver' wants us all to pay him dues, literally wants his pound of flesh. Yet the one thing we should not fear, and cannot avoid is, inevitable 'death'

12:20 PM  
Blogger Casdok said...

Interesting thoughts Quasar9!

1:08 PM  
Blogger butterflies said...

I love the word of God.Each day I open my bible,I hear His voice.

Breathe easy Dr John..
Love to Betty.

3:17 PM  
Blogger Lori's Minute said...

Glad to hear you did not have a burple day but sounds like a productive day.

3:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

THANK YOU FOR TODAY'S WORD!
See, I just knew that the ACLU picked the wrong place & the wrong people to try their anti-Christmas stunts! (& I hope not any of those people participating in the ACLU gets any Christmas presents, either)
LOIS

4:46 AM  

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