“Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Dear members and friends of Our Savior, Jesus,
In the Lutheran Church we take time in October to remember the heritage of our faith. It was on October 31, 1517 that Dr. Martin Luther posted “The 95 Theses” (statements for debate) on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany.
The emphasis of these statements was that, according to God’s Word in Scripture, we are saved by God’s grace through faith, and not by keeping the law (Ephesians 2:8-9). No human being has kept or can keep God’s law. It is only through faith in God’s love given in Jesus that a person can be saved and have eternal life. This teaching was contrary to the thought of Luther’s time and it caused many religious and political changes. So this period in history is often called THE REFORMATION.
As we prepare to celebrate the Reformation this year (Sunday, October 26) we are reminded of the continuing need for “reformation” in the church (which is US) today. Once a person comes to faith in God’s saving love, how is their life changed?
The Bible verse above points out quite forcefully that if I am a Christian, my life is to be different (reformed) from what it was before I came to faith, and different (reformed) from the way the rest of the world acts. I am to put off the “old self” and put on the new life, the changed life, the “reformed” life that lives in the love and peace God gives in Jesus. Christians do not live new lives in order to be saved. But, because God has saved us in Christ, Christians do seek to live new lives.
May God’s grace continue to “reform” us in Jesus Christ, our Savior!
Pastor Randy Schultz
Guidelines for Meditating on The Word
Choose an appropriate time and place to meditate in which there will be complete quiet
Pray to the Holy Spirit that He would enable you to understand what you read from the Bible
Read through the given passage of Scripture 3 times in one setting
Spend at least 10 minutes pondering what you read
Answer the following questions about the passage:
Write down your thoughts so that you do not forget them and can ponder them at a later time
Pray to God about the content of the passage
Each day of the week, meditate on a phrase or sentence from the given passage.
If possible memorize it.
- What do I learn about Jesus?
- What does God want me to believe or do?
Readings for OctoberSep. 28-Oct. 4, Matthew 21:23-27
Oct. 5-11, Matthew 21:33-46
Oct. 12-18, Matthew 22:1-14
Oct. 19-25, Matthew 22:15-22
Oct. 26-Nov. 1, Matthew 11:12-19-17
Nov. 2-8, Matthew 5:1-12
Nov. 9-15, Matthew 25:1-13
Nov. 16-22, Matthew 25:14-30
If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. (Philippians 2:1-2)
These words recorded by St. Paul summarize and empower the theme of our spiritual growth and faith renewal effort now known as Connect to Christ: experience MORE.
At our Leadership Retreat, each director prayerfully shared his/her goal(s) for this campaign. Two themes were repeated and amplified around the table: “more” of the good things (i.e. God things) going on at Our Savior Lutheran; and “unity” of people and purpose.
Truly, we are blessed by knowing Christ and being united (connected) to Him. St. Paul names some of these blessings in the Scripture above: encouragement, comfort, fellowship, tenderness, compassion. Connected to
Christ, we experience these blessings and MORE. Look around our website and check out what MORE Christ has to give.
Spiritual renewal is the work of the Holy Spirit who connects us to Christ and thereby restores the joy of salvation (Psalm 51:12).
Because we are “united with Christ,” we also have a connection to each other in Christ. St. Paul records that as we are “like-minded” in
Christ and as we show the “same love” as Christ, and we function as “one spirit and purpose,” then our joy is made complete.
May the Holy Spirit restore and complete our joy as we worship, serve, and grow together at Our Savior Lutheran. Let’s Connect to Christ: Experience MORE!