Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries By Pastor Ken Klaus, Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
"A Greater Love" November 21, 2013 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 When I'm on the road for Lutheran Hour Ministries, the places where I speak are responsible for my travel expenses. Good stewardship before the Lord, as well as with my fellow believers, dictates that I travel economy rather than in first-class.
That means that I, like most of you, can only plunk down in our squished-together-like-sardines seat after we have run the gauntlet of the premium passengers who are already wallowing in their large, soft, plushy seats, which come complete with plenty of hip and leg room.
Understand, I'm not bitter about the difference.
Some of the folks in those front seats are there because they are road warriors. Their job demands they be constantly traveling. The other group occupying first-class is the folks who have paid a pretty penny for the extra comfort and convenience. Both groups have earned the right to be and enjoy those large, soft, plushy seats, which come with plenty of hip and leg room.
All of this sets the stage for a most remarkable event.
A few weeks ago, 14 Marines were on their way home from Afghanistan. On a flight from San Diego to Chicago, six of those Marines were moved into the unoccupied first-class seats. That's when the remarkable thing happened. Knowing there were still eight Marines left in the economy section of the plane, eight first-class passengers forgot about what they had paid for those seats, forgot about how hard they had worked to be in those seats, and traded places with the Marines.
All the Marines flew to Chicago sitting on a large, plushy seat, which gave plenty of hip and leg room.
The Scripture for today's devotion says the greatest love we sinners can show is a willingness to die for our friends. Since those words come from the Savior, I wouldn't think of challenging them. But, I might add a really cool act of love we humans can show is a willingness to give up our first-class seats for a war-weary vet.
Yes, such gifts are the highest expression of love we humans can offer.
But they are pitifully - miserably -- small compared to the great gift of love that has been given to us through the Savior's sacrifice. You see, Jesus didn't offer Himself up for His friends. He died for those who hated Him and railroaded Him to the cross. Jesus didn't go to His death to save the best among us; He lived, died and rose to rescue from hell the worst of us.
To die for your enemies, that is the greatest love we will ever see. And we see it in the Savior.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, having seen all You have done to save us, may we, in large ways and small, reflect the love we have been given into this dark and sinful world. In Your Name I ask it. Amen. In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
___________________________________________________________________________________________________ WEDNESDAY'S QUIZ: To whom did Luke write the book of Acts? Theophilus (Good job Dianne!) ________________________________________________________________________________ THURSDAY'S QUIZ: What did Peter say to the beggar when the beggar asked him for money at the temple gate called Beautiful? ___________________________________________________________________________________ CALENDAR Fri- Assemble newsletter 9am Sat- worship 5pm Sun- worship 8:30 and 11; Sunday school and adult Bible class 9:45 _________________________________________________________________________________________________________ THE STORY: AN EXCITING NEW EXPERIENCE FOR OUR WHOLE CONGREGATION!! What is it? THE STORY is a book compiled and written by Max Lucado and Randy Frazee, which takes sections of the Bible and divides it up into 31 chapters and adds commentary and study notes to it. The best way to describe it is to call it a Reader's Digest condensed version of the Bible. It is not split up into chapters and verses but reads more like a novel, and it doesn't include every bit of the Bible, but most of the main sections and stories.
How will it work? As a family and as individual members of the congregation you will each get a copy of the book. There are different versions for adults, teens, older elementary age and younger children. You will get these and read chapter 1 before January 5. Each week we will go through a chapter of the book in every part of the church's life: in Worship, Bible Studies, Confirmation and in the Home for personal devotions.
Why are we doing this? This is a great opportunity for all of us to read through the Bible TOGETHER in 31 weeks and for us to all literally be on the same page.The materials are excellent.It is a fantastic way for us to grow together as a church and or us to reach out to the community with the Gospel!
What about special weeks like Holy Week and Easter? We will take several weeks off throughout these eight months, one for Life Sunday in January, one for Easter and another two or three when I am going to be gone for Spring Break and other vacations. A specific schedule will be coming out in the next week or so.
How do we get the books? Each adult will be asked to buy a book for $6. A table will be set up in the narthex to buy them before and after services for the next several weeks or you can call Marilyn in the office at 456-2888 to purchase your during the week.
What about the kids? All children will receive a copy that is age appropriate courtesy of the Janet Wagner fund. There will be a table set up for the next several weeks for adults to buy books. Kids will get theirs in Sunday school .
What kind of help is needed to make this a success? We have several volunteers already to sell books, but could use a few more to sell before and after services until everyone who wants a copy of the book has one. I would also like someone, a man or a woman, who would be willing to lead a study of it during the week.
Can I order books for family members who are not members? There will also be an order form for those of you who want to buy books for your children, grandchildren, relatives, and friends. PLEASE NOTE THAT PRICES WILL FLUCTUATE ON FUTURE ORDERS DUE TO PRICE CHANGES WITH BOOK DISTRIBUTORS AND PUBLISHING HOUSES.
Where can I go to get more info? Please go to www.thestory.com for more info. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ THANKSGIVING EVE WORSHIP AT 7PM WEDNESDAY There will be no Thanksgiving Day worship. ________________________________________________________________ ST. JOHN'S WILL HELP OPERATION BACKPACK WITH PEANUT BUTTER You may have read in the Warrenton Record that Operation Backpack is in desperate need of food items.
Operation Backpack is a program that provides food for needy children on weekends. Most of these kids are able to get reduced or free breakfast and lunch at school daily, but since there is no school on weekends they often don't have enough food to make it through the weekend. The food gets brought to a central location and then disbursed to the most needy of children in our area schools. It is done discreetly without any other kids knowing about it.
A few Warrenton area churches have teamed up to provide the food. Each church is taking a different food item (kind of like we used to do for the Ditty bags for soldiers).
St. John's is in charge of peanut butter.
Please bring jars of peanut butter to church within the next two weeks so we can get them to the kids who need them asap. Any jars of peanut butter will do as long as they can comfortably fit in a backpack