Love and Death
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
by
3d ago
Ash Wednesday happens to fall on St. Valentine’s Day this year. The two holidays occurring on the same day makes for kind of a comical overlap in the church calendar if you ask me. Perhaps husbands and boyfriends can get their spouses dirt, dust, or ash instead of flowers and chocolates this February 14th! (I am sure that will go over well!) Getting our significant others to remember that they are going to die has a different feel and focus than reminding them that they are loved.             I suppose it is fitting in some rights that the ..read more
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Embracing the New
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1M ago
In this new month of the new year, many people are resolving to make changes. Some are repenting of their holiday calories by embarking on new diet and exercise plans. Some are joining a trend that has started in the last few years called “dry January”, a movement which invites people to give up drinking alcohol for a month to kick off the new year sober. As a pastor, I am resolving to pray throughout my days more. I pray and worship all the time, but I often neglect to do so when little problems and stresses come up throughout the day. Praying is a powerful and profound way in which we entrus ..read more
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Still Finding God Online
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
This morning, after the kids and my wife left for work, I felt a need to worship. I was still in my pajamas in the parsonage, so I considered getting dressed and walking across the lawn to sing and pray Matins (Morning Prayer) by myself in our sanctuary. Perhaps it was out of laziness, but for some reason I found that idea unappealing. I thought to myself, “I really just want to pray as a person in the pew and not the person leading the service.” So, I stayed in my pajamas, clicked on the YouTube app on our TV, and searched for recorded Matins services that use our same hymnal setting. I was a ..read more
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Resolving towards Repentance
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
There are many things in life we should leave behind. As we grow, there are clothes and shoes that we should no longer wear when they get too small. As we age, there are immaturities and trivial endeavors that should be left behind later in adulthood. There are bad habits that, though they certainly do die hard, should be left in the past if possible. There are toxic ways of thinking that we should do our best to move on from. There are sins that we should always be repenting of.             Sadly anymore, too many people think that repent ..read more
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Translating the Word
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
In this year of our Lord, 2022, Protestants in general and Lutherans in particular celebrate the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s translation of the New Testament from Greek to German. Though this was not the first time these books of the Bible were translated into a common language of Europeans, Luther’s version served as a powerful and profound work of the Protestant Reformation to bring scripture into language that people of all classes, careers, and ages, could understand. For the first time in centuries, common people could hear the Good News of Jesus Christ read directly in a languag ..read more
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The ordinary and the new
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
I just dropped off my kids for their first day of school this morning. The first day of school is a significant rite of passage every year for many families – families with young students all the way up to those beginning graduate programs. There are new teachers to meet, new friends to make, new classrooms to navigate, new lockers to get situated in, and all sorts of new experiences in between. For kids like our daughter, Freja, this rite of passage is all the more pronounced since she is entering a new school for the first time as a kindergartner. She is growing quickly and her entry into a ..read more
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Though We walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
A lot has been happening in our church lately. After years of brainstorming, discussions, visioning, and voting, we finally have new structural supports in place so that we can open more space in the narthex. This will enable us to put in a decent ramp into the sanctuary (the one we have used for years is hazardously steep) and open more space for fellowship after worship. You have probably also noticed that we have moved our office spaces as part of this project. The Pastor’s Study is back in the original sacristy, and we have converted two of our hallway classrooms into the new church office ..read more
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FInding God in THe small moments
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
Upon writing this, I have recently returned from my first in-person Montana Synod event in at least two and a half years. My colleagues and I have met online for Zoom meetings and convocations, but we have not physically gathered together in years. While I am grateful that we have been spared driving thousands of miles of travel across Montana and Wyoming these past few years, I have to say that the collegiality and community that we experience when we meet in-person cannot be matched by get-togethers on computers. It felt good to be in the same space with my fellow pastors again.    ..read more
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The descent before the resurrection
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
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1y ago
I am open to criticisms that I do not preach about Hell enough. Some preachers like to fill their congregations with fear about eternal damnation so that they might better provoke their people to lean into their hope of heaven and eternal reward. I am not one of those preachers, but it is nevertheless important that we understand our beliefs about Hell and why they are important. Hell is the Germanic term for “realm of the dead”, most often termed Hades in our Greek Christian sources. Hell or Hades features centrally in the story of our salvation, as we confess in the Apostles’ Creed that Jesu ..read more
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God's presence amidst the pain
Faith Lutheran Church - Blog
by
1y ago
The second to last weekend in February, I took some time with my family. A gift we received this Christmas was money to rent an Airbnb, so we decided to book a house in Kalispell and spend Saturday and Sunday skiing with our kids at Big Mountain. (Otto would correct me right now and insist that I was snowboarding, not skiing, but that is beside the point…)! Our family aspiration this winter has been to get our kids up the mountain and finally teach them the sport of downhill skiing that we are so fond of. It is important that you love where you live, and enjoying the outdoors goes a long way t ..read more
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