God Does More

For over a decade, Bethel Lutheran Church has held an enormous rummage sale with the expressed purpose of raising money to support our families who send their children to Christian schools and those going into professional church work.  Simple.  People give us their old stuff, we sell it to people who want to buy it.  … Read more

A Sabbatical?

The year was 2009, and I can remember the meeting vividly.  The Leadership Team of our  congregation passed a sabbatical policy for called staff.  I felt it was a nice gesture but honestly had no intention of using it.  I love my job.  It doesn’t get much better than walking with people through the ups … Read more

The Irony of the Incarnation

Holiday travel time is upon us.  Chances are at one point or another in the next month or so you will travel somewhere for an extended period of time.  I know how it is with traveling.  Packing is the worst part.  As my family has grown through the years, it has gotten rather ridiculous.  How … Read more

Reclaiming the Heart of Membership

Over the last two years, God has led me on a journey of deepening my discipleship.  By his grace, the beautiful simplicity of Jesus’ teachings has been revealed and rooted in me.  As I listened to Jesus, a marvelous picture of the Christian church became clearer and clearer.  Unfortunately when I looked at the broader … Read more

Pray First

If you are anything like me, you like to have control of your environment.  Whether it’s for security or efficiency or necessity, we typically like to keep things in line and have some idea about what’s going to happen in the future.  We make strategic plans and organizational charts.  We have insurance policies and contingency … Read more

To Belong

“Where do I belong?”  For a long time, this question was answered for people before it was asked.  For so many, the hometown, the family business, the traditions of the culture made the question of belonging a non-issue.  But things changed as mobility, education and communication advanced.  The question of belonging became more of an … Read more

Neighborhood Missionary Season

“…be ready in season and out of season.” – 2 Timothy 4:2 In that quote, Paul is encouraging the young Timothy to always be prepared to communicate the good news of Jesus no matter what the situation. It doesn’t take much to admit that a long, hard, cold Minnesota winter puts a damper on our mission … Read more

From the Heart

The heart is a tricky thing.  In one sense, it’s that rhythmical muscle in our chest, pulsing with life.  In another sense, it’s the deepest of emotions, both positive and negative.  There is yet another sense that Jesus uses when he talks about “heart.”  Check it out: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they … Read more

Reading Paul, Hearing Jesus

It’s no wonder why we love to read Paul’s letters. We love to dive into the depth and the logic of Paul. We love his systematic approach to Law and Gospel. We love Paul’s passion and his steadfast adherence to the confession of Jesus Christ. Paul makes sense to us! In so many ways, Paul … Read more