Christian in a Post-Christian World
Part 2: Individuals and Families
Dear Saints in Christ,
As individuals and families, you know the changes of the world quite intimately. For some of you, you may be the only Christians in your family. Or many of your family have long stopped attending worship and are only Christians in name only. Many of your friends, neighbors, and co-workers don’t go to church and generally don’t have any major criticisms of the way the world has shifted in terms of morals or general life. In other words, you know in a very real way the way the New Testament describes Christians as “elect exiles” and “sojourners and exiles,” in 1 Peter 1:1 and 2:11. Or when God’s people are described as “strangers and exiles on the earth,” in Hebrews 11:13. This very Biblical language is something we are called to embrace and is perhaps especially important today.
It is important for us to take this reality to heart as individuals and families. It is important for us to realize that being a Christian makes us different, unique, and strange.
This embrace is difficult primarily because we won’t “fit in” with the world around us. This is even more difficult in places like ours where communities are small and our “strangeness” likely impacts our relationships with friends, neighbors, and family in very real ways.
There was a Lutheran pastor in Romania, Rev. Richard Wurmbrand, who was arrested by the secret police in 1948 on a Sunday morning on his way to the Divine Service. After years of imprisonment, he was released and encouraged to flee the country to be a voice for persecuted Christians under communism. Reflecting upon the situation he said that there are two kinds of Christians, “those who sincerely believe in God and those who, just as sincerely, believe that they believe. You can tell them apart by their actions in decisive moments.”
While, thanks be to God, our decisive moments are not as perilous as they were in Rev. Wurmbrand’s setting; they are still present for us and still spiritually perilous. We are, every day, confronted with little moments which taken on their own may seem insignificant, but over time gnaw away our faith and give our sinful flesh freer reign. What sort of language pours over your lips when with friends or colleagues? What are you viewing on TV or the latest streaming service? What wins out when involvement in a sport, activity, or fandom of a sport interferes with gathering together around the Word and Sacrament? What if it is too late to do family devotions? What are we teaching and modeling to others when we prize and prioritize other things?
Don’t hear me as being some “kill joy”. Instead, I hope you are recognizing that we have wonderful ways of living in the world faithfully. It doesn’t mean you have to skip the gathering of friends, but it may mean being late. It doesn’t mean you can’t participate in other activities on Sunday, but it may mean attending worship at a sister congregation, another day if it is offered, or yes maybe not participating in the activity on that day. But this is all fine. It doesn’t, necessarily, mean having new friends, but keeping your behavior consistent with the Gospel while you are with everyone. Will you take some flak? Probably. Will they learn to respect you for it? May be. Will some people despise you for it? Also, possible. Will your fellowship with your brothers and sisters in Christ become even more important? Indeed, it will. This is what the writer of Hebrews is getting at when he says, “24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)
Finally, so that we do not lose heart and think that somehow this is all about our works and lives, we do well to remember that we are not first of strange and exiles because of how we live or what we do. Instead, it is because of what God has done for us in Christ Jesus. He has rescued us from sin, death, and the devil. Jesus has overcome the World. Jesus has defeated death. He has brought forgiveness. He has demonstrated the devil’s power to be nothing in His own death and resurrection. This same God has made you His. He has made you His people. He has claimed you in the waters of baptism. He has spoken the Word of forgiveness to You. He has given you His body and blood. He has made you something new and different than you were, for He has poured out generously the Holy Spirit upon you through Jesus Christ. Our strangeness, our relationship with the world, death, and life has changed because God has made us His own; so we live in His kingdom every day and in every place in this world. God help us to not only see this, but also to live in this way in our lives.
Peace in Christ,
1 David Johnson (Karla) 18 Paul Haar
3 Sharon Deilke 18 Viena Klipfel
4 Bethany Andreasen 21 Katy Schaff
6 Vicki Jerde 21 Brenda Taffe
7 Beverly Thayer 23 Jackie Hales
8 Dan Heinz 24 Isaac Nelson
14 Joann Pomplun 26 Alison Andreasen
14 Todd Salfrank 28 Trina Tschappat
16 Zachary Johnson
21 Jordon & Alison Andreasen
29 Stuart & Stacey Nelson
31 Dave & Rayma Scepaniak
Meetings in October
The Quarterly Voters Meeting
LWML – Sun Oct 2nd at 9:00 am
Dual Parish Leadership – Mon Oct 3rd at 5:45 pm
Church Council – Mon Oct 3rd at 6:45 pm
Elders – Thur Oct 6th at 5:15 pm
Voters Meeting – Sun Oct 9th at 9:30 am
Nursery Circle – Sun Oct 9th after the service
Board of Education – Sun Oct 16th after the service
will be Sunday, October 9th
at 9:30 am. Please attend to help conduct the business of the church. We need enough members present (a quorum) in order to vote on some items. Among other things, we will look at how far we are in fundraising for the carpet fund.
Elders for October
– Douglas Klipfel & Don Hoops
Oct. 2 – Teigan McKown & Abigail Andreasen
Oct. 9 – Raylee Brick & Jayda Siebert
Oct. 16 – Briella Klipfel & Ally Johnson
Oct. 23 – Bethany Andreasen & Tristan Tschappat
Oct. 30 – Tucker Brick & Rhylan Tschappat
Portals of Prayer
for October – December are available in the narthex.
is October 2nd
. This year’s theme is “For Us and With Us,” based on Romans 8:31-39 — What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
We glorify God by sharing His love with others. Your generous mite offering donations enable us to share the Gospel throughout the world. The Holy Spirit has been doing this for 80 years through the Lutheran Women’s Missionary League!
Join us on LWML Sunday to give thanks and praise to God. Thank you for supporting the LWML!
The Senior Potluck
will be Tuesday, October 11th
at noon. Join us for good food and friendship.
A Circuit Reformation Service
will be held on Sunday, October 30th
at 3:00 pm at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Doland. The guest preacher will be Rev. Grünbaum of the Evangelical Lutheran Mission Diocese of Finland. Anyone wanting to join in a choir may come 20 minutes early to practice a song. There will be refreshments after the service, and a presentation by Rev. Grünbaum about the Reformation in Scandinavia. Please join us for this special service. Redeemer Lutheran Church is easy to find, on Hwy 37 in Doland.
Tuesday Morning Bible Class
– Everyone is welcome on Tuesdays at 6:30 am at Our Savior. We are studying the large catechism.
Wednesday Bible Class
– Join us on Wednesdays at 6:30 pm as we take a look at the life of St. Paul.
Saturday Bible Studies
– 9:00-11:00 am
(this date changed!) – Proverbs: Everyday Wisdom and the Wisdom of Christ
We clearly cannot cover the entirety of Proverbs, but we take an overview of the Proverbs to see much of the wisdom it provides
and (like all Scripture) see how it points us to Christ!
– “Old Hundredth”
This is the name of the tune of “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow”. We will gather as many as possible, men, women,
and children to learn how to sing the Common Doxology in 4-part harmony.
LWML South Dakota District
2022 Christian Life Workshops
“The Tabernacle/Temple in the Bible”
Presenter: Rev. Robert Hinckley
Pastor at Zion Lutheran Church, Chamberlain
Christian Life Workshop and Mitchell Zone Fall Rally
Saturday, October 8, 2022 – Zion Lutheran Church
620 E 3rd Ave, Mitchell
Christian Life Workshop
Saturday, October 15, 2022 – St. Paul Lutheran Church
846 N 7th St, Spearfish
2022 Christian Life Workshop Schedule
9-9:30 am Registration and Coffee
9:30-9:45 am Opening Devotion
9:45-10 am Greetings, Announcements, Introductions
10-11 am Speaker
11-11:15 am Break/Singing
12:15-1:15 pm Lunch Break (Shopping time)
1:15-1:30 pm Singing
1:30-1:45 pm Closing
Coffee and Shopping at the LWML Store!
St. John’s Columbia
4 Sharon Zastrow 21 Belle Rae Sieber
5 Joyce Wilson 28 Cole Bisbee
8 Heather Underberg 28 John Bisbee
17 Amy Patton 30 Dominick Borge
21 Cyndy Larson
6 Alfred & Doris Larson
Oct 2 Tony & Amanda Bisbee
Oct 9 Dean & Lorie Ringgenberg
Oct 16 Roger & Sharon Zastrow
Oct 23 Cole Bisbee & Logan Ringgenberg
Oct 30 Mic & Jen Daggett
Nov 6 Brent & Barb Miller
Nov 13 Ray & Cyndy Larson
Nov 20 Karl & Val Eichler
Nov 27 Mike & Molly Ringgenberg
LCEF Art Contest
Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) has announced a student art contest in conjunction with the 175th anniversary of the LCMS. The yearlong anniversary celebration, which kicked off on April 26 with a Service of Thanksgiving at the LCMS International Center in St. Louis
, is being held under the theme “Only Jesus: No Other Name,” based on Acts 4:12.
Any student who attends an LCMS school or is a member of an LCMS congregation is eligible to enter the contest.
“One of the hallmarks of our great Lutheran tradition is our schools,” said the Rev. Bart Day, president and CEO of LCEF. “What an impact they are having on their communities, bringing academic excellence to a curriculum that begins and ends with one person only: our Savior, Jesus Christ.”
The contest, said Day, is an opportunity for LCMS young people to “to celebrate our church’s long legacy and history” by “sharing their creative expressions and love for the name above all other names, Jesus.”
Submissions may be two-dimensional (e.g., drawing, painting, collage, graphic design, poster) or three-dimensional (e.g., pottery, leather, metal, beads, basketry) and will be accepted in three age categories:
- Kindergarten through fifth grade;
- Sixth through twelfth grade; and
- College (ages 18–22).
Submissions will be accepted Sept. 5 through Dec. 1, with winners announced in early 2023. Winning entries will be displayed at the LCEF booth during the 68th Regular Convention of the LCMS, set for July 29–Aug. 3, 2023, at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee.
There may be multiple winners in each category. Winning entries will receive:
- K–5: $50 LCEF gift card
- 6–12: $100 LCEF gift card
- College: $200 LCEF gift card
Find out more at lcef.org/art-contest
. Submissions must be postmarked by Dec. 1, 2022. Send submissions to:
Lutheran Church Extension Fund
Attn: “Only Jesus” Art Contest
10733 Sunset Office Dr., Suite 300
St. Louis, MO 63127
Daylight Saving Time
ends at 2:00 am on Sunday, Nov. 6th
, so don’t forget to move your clocks back one hour on that Saturday night!