Chosen and Sent — This week at ELC

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At a young age Jeremiah was called to speak a word that exposed the corruption of the people. Are we willing to listen to the voices that expose the injustices in our way of living?

Worship this week:

Saturday — 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday — 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 a.m.  Sunday School

10:30 a.m.  Contemporary Worship

7:00 p.m.  — Community Thanksgiving Worship at Perry Lutheran Church

Devotions for the week:

November 23, 2014                                                   “Amend your ways”

      By the time of Jeremiah, the Babylonian king had defeated Assyria (who had defeated the Northern Kingdom of Israel). The Babylonian king now threatened to destroy Judah (the Southern Kingdom). Jeremiah spoke on God’s behalf, with judgments for a people who seemed to have forgotten how to remain faithful to God. God’s promise of deliverance still rang throughout Jeremiah’s prophesies, yet God showed God won’t stand idly by while the people sin. God’s promise would be kept, but not until the people had endured punishment (exile) for their unfaithfulness to God.

 Read:Follow the story of Israel’s and Judah’s disobedience, and the words of God’s prophet, Jeremiah.

Sunday, Jeremiah 1:4-10; 7:1-11, Jeremiah’s Temple Sermon

Monday, Jeremiah 7:16-34, The People’s Disobedience

Tuesday, Jeremiah 8:18-9:11, The Prophet Mourns for the People

Wednesday, Jeremiah 10:1-10, Idolatry Has Brought Ruin on Israel

Thursday, Jeremiah 10:11-16, Idolatry Has Brought Ruin on Israel

Friday, Jeremiah 10:17-25, The Coming Exile

Saturday, Jeremiah 11:1-17, Israel and Judah Have Broken the Covenant

  • How does mourning and lament shape the communities of Israel and Judah? What role does mourning play in shaping our lives?
  • What evidence have you seen that God remains faithful to people today, despite people’s inability to remain faithful to God?
  • When you were a child, what did you believe you would do to make the world a better place? What can you do now to make the world a better place?

Do:Do something this week that leaves the world in a better place than before you arrived. (Plant something, create something artistic, enhance a relationship, forgive someone, care for someone who is sick)

Bless: God of Power, remind us through your word that you are at work everywhere through the actions of your people. Move in our hearts this day. Amen.

Fear or Faith? — This week at ELC

Fear-or-FaithWhen the people of Israel were threatened would they give in to fear, or trust God’s promise? We may also feel the same pressures, and must answer the same questions.

Worship with Holy Communion this week:

Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in Chapel

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 Sunday School

10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for the week of November 16, 2014               

                          “Swords into Plowshares”

        This first part of Isaiah was written for Judah (the Southern Kingdom), whose borders were being threatened by Assyria, the same country that had already conquered Samaria and defeated Israel a few hundred years before. The Rabshakeh (the chief steward of the king of Assyria, and messenger) threatened Judah and invited the people to surrender, promising they would be taken care of. King Hezekiah of Judah remained faithful to God, asking Isaiah to plead to God on behalf of Judah. God heard King Hezekiah’s plea and saved Judah from the Assyrian king. Once again, God’s promise of deliverance was kept.

Read:Follow the story of Hezekiah and Isaiah, and how God saved them from conquest and exile for many years.

Sunday, Isaiah 36:1-3, 13-20; 37:1-7; 2:1-4, Swords into Plowshares

Monday, Isaiah 36:4-12, Sennacherib Threatens Jerusalem

Tuesday, Isaiah 37:8-13, Hezekiah Consults Isaiah

Wednesday, Isaiah 37:14-29, Hezekiah’s Prayer

Thursday, Isaiah 37:30-38, Sennacherib’s Defeat and Death

Friday, Isaiah 38:1-22, Hezekiah’s Illness

Saturday, Isaiah 39:1-8, Envoys from Babylon Welcomed

  • How did God respond to Hezekiah’s words and actions? What were God’s promises to God’s people?
  • How do you suppose God decides how to arbitrate when communities are at odds with each other?
  • When have you trusted in God at a time when trusting took great courage? How did it turn out?

Do:Keep a prayer journal. Record your prayers and how God answers them.

Bless:God most powerful, speak confidence and courage to your people in the reading of your word today. Amen.

 

Justice, Mercy, Humility This week at ELC

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Pious words in worship cannot be separated from our daily treatment of those around us. God calls us through Micah to bring a consistent worship in our words and deeds.

Worship this week:

Saturday — 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday — 8:30 a.m. Traditional Worship

9:30 a.m. Sunday School

10:30 a.m. Contemporary Worship

Devotions for the week November 9, 2014                                  “Do Justice, love kindness”

      At the time of Micah, the kingdom of Israel was divided. Some lived in the Northern Kingdom, Israel, with its capital of Samaria. Others lived in the Southern Kingdom, Judah, with its capital of Jerusalem. Micah spoke to Israel shortly before Samaria was conquered by Assyria, which effectively ended the kingdom of Israel (the Northern Kingdom). A few hundred years later, Babylon would conquer both Assyria and Judah, putting God’s people in exile.

   God’s promise through Micah proclaimed that out of Bethlehem in Judah one would come to save the people from exile and ruin. Through Micah’s words, God reminded the people that God did not desire burnt offerings or sacrifices. Instead, God desired the people to live with justice, kindness, and humility.

Read:Follow the book of Micah, as the prophet proclaims both judgment and the promise of restoration.

Sunday, Micah 5:2-4; 6:6-8, Micah

Monday, Micah 1, Judgment and Doom

Tuesday, Micah 2, Social Evils Denounced

Wednesday, Micah 3, Wicked Rulers

Thursday, Micah 4, Peace and Promise

Friday, Micah 5:1, 5-15; 6:1-5, 9-16, God’s Challenge

Saturday, Micah 7, Prophecy of Restoration

  • What was God doing here? How were the people’s actions punished or rewarded?
  • How are the actions of your community/culture punished or rewarded? How can you influence your community’s behaviors so that they more closely match those God’s ways?
  • How do you act with justice, kindness, and humility? What can you do this week to make improvements in those areas of your life?

Do:Perform an act of justice, kindness, or humility for a stranger at least once each day this week. Make a note of how your behavior shapes your attitude.

What does a saint look like? This week at ELC

washThis week we see some unlikely people play a role in God’s ministry of healing.  Who are the saints who have touched your life?  We will light candles to remember those who have passed on the to church triumphant since last year, as well as celebrate all those new lives joined to the congregation in baptism.

Worship with Holy Communion this weekend

Saturday – 5:00 p.m. in the chapel

Sunday – 8:30 a.m. Traditional worship

9:30 a.m. Sunday School

10:30 a.m.  Contemporary worship

11:30 a.m. — Annual Meeting of the Congregation

Devotions for the week:

November 2, 2014                                           “Elisha Heals Namaan”

      Elisha was a mighty prophet who took over when the prophet, Elijah, was taken into heaven by heavenly chariot. Elisha performed many miracles for the people of Israel and for people in neighboring nations.

     Like so many before him, Elisha’s blessings became, in turn, blessings to the nations of the world. God blessed Israel so that the whole world would be blessed. Elisha’s miracles were no exception.

     In this miracle of healing, the commander, Naaman, nearly missed the opportunity for healing because he was too proud to believe that Elisha’s course of action for healing would work. He did not believe Elisha’s God would heal him by a simple bathing in the Jordan River.   But God did heal Naaman, and he became a believer and follower of God. He returned to his homeland, Aram, with two mule-loads of Israel’s dirt so that he could worship God on Israelite soil, even when living in Aram.

 

Read:  Follow the story of the miracles of the prophet, Elisha.

Sunday, 2 Kings 5:1-14 Elisha Heals Naaman

Monday, 2 Kings 2:13-18, Elisha Succeeds Elijah

Tuesday, 2 Kings 2:19-25, Elisha Performs Miracles

Wednesday, 2 Kings 4:1-7, Elisha and the Widow’s Oil

Thursday, 2 Kings 4:8-37, Elisha Raises the Shunammite’s Son

Friday, 2 Kings 4:38-41 Elisha Purifies the Pot of Stew

Saturday, 2 Kings 4:42-44 Elisha Feeds One Hundred Men

  • What kinds of miracles did Elisha perform? How did these miracles serve God?
  • Who in your community stands out as one who will stand up for the oppressed, poor, or silenced? How might you support such a person in their work?
  • What miracles have you witnessed? Where have you seen God at work in the world this week?

Do:  Visit someone who is sick. Bring a meal, send a card, or simply sit and visit.