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Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Challenge!

Do you ever feel like studying the Bible is a little bit too overwhelming? Do you sometimes look at all those pages and think to yourself, "I don't even know where to begin!" Well, if that is the case, we have got a wonderful opportunity for you. Starting September 2nd and concluding on September 23rd, we are going to offer a four week study on Sunday morning entitled, "Opening Scripture."

Over these four weeks we are going to discuss the basic principles one needs when reading the Bible. It doesn't matter if you've never read the Bible or if you have read it a thousand times, I am asking you to join us for the class so that you can feel more equipped to read your Bibles.

So here is my challenge to you. I am asking you to dedicate four weeks to studying the Bible on Sunday morning with us. For four Sundays in a row for forty-five minutes (9:15 - 10:00) we are asking that you come to learn more about the scriptures and how to read them. Beyond these four Sundays there is no commitment. More opportunities will be offered to you by the church after these four weeks and if you so choose, you can join another Bible study. But first, we want to equip you with the tools you need to dig into the greatest tool God has given us, His Word. So, please, take me up on this, especially if you have never studied the Bible before, this is your chance to really encounter God's will for you in a new and powerful way. Please prayerfully consider joining us as we learn how to encounter God's Word in this four week challenge!

Pastor Bob

What Makes a Lutheran Spiritual?

It's fun, it's exciting, it's the thrill of a lifetime... it's time for "What Makes a Lutheran?"!

This month we are going to discuss what the Spiritual life of a Christian looks like. WARNING: This could be the most disappointing article you ever read, OR it could be the most enlightening (but let's be honest, it is most likely neither... but read on anyhow!).

As Christian we are always trying to get closer to God, we are trying to "hear God's voice" or "see God's face." We start to think that in order to do that we need to live some sort of hyper-spiritual life. If we just pray harder or read our Bibles more or do this or do that great spiritual exercise we would get closer to God. We hear about God speaking to this person or healing that person because of some great spiritual insight that they have and it may cause us to think, "If only I were more 'spiritual,' then I would witness these blessings in my life."

From the Lutheran perspective, spirituality is not as flashy as all that, some might even say it is more boring (though I wouldn't!). We see these spiritual events in the lives of others and we admit that they are pretty amazing, but they are not the only way the Bible talks about spirituality. The spiritual life of a Christian consists of dedicated prayer and Bible study, to be sure, but it also consists of being a good employee, doing your chores around the house, attending your kid's soccer games. The spiritual life is doing those mundane, everyday events to the glory of god, for the sake of your neighbor. Where do we find God's face? In the mother who changes a babies diaper after an "accident," in the mechanic who is always honest and doesn't overcharge, in the husband who works to pay the bills and take care of his family. These people are doing what God has called them to do in this world. And by working hard in that calling we are being of some great benefit to our neighbor. In the New Testament, spirituality consists of doing what God has called them to do in this world. And by working hard in that calling we are being of some great benefit to our neighbor. In the New Testament, spirituality consists of doing what God has called you to do for the sake of others. (Read I Corinthians 7:17-24; Ephesians 5:1-6:9; Colossians 3:17-4:5).

Because of Christ's life, death, and resurrection we have been forgiven by God. What is more, we have been made holy. This means that when we carry out our everyday activities, these activities are now spiritual acts of worship to our Father who love us for Christ's sake! Christ's redemption has made it so that when you buy flowers for your wife or cook your husband his favorite meal or help the kids with their homework, God sees that as an act of worship! Living our everday lives for the sake of others, that is the spiritual life! Actually, when you think about it like this, this view of spirituality doesn't make the spiritual life more boring, but it makes everyday life more exciting!

Pastor Bob

Faith Lutheran Church • 123 Park Lane • Moorpark, CA 93021 • (805) 532 1049 • Send Email