Safe Travels

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The Psalms are the prayer/song book of the bible. There are 150 Psalms in the bible. They can be uplifting and inspiring; they can be filled with despair and anger. Some are short, some are very, very long. Some are more popular then others, and many sound the same. Here is Psalm 121:

1I lift up my eyes to the hills— from where will my help come?

2My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

3He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.

4He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

5The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand.

6The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.

7The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.

8The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.

Psalm 23 would have to be the most popular Psalm. Psalm 121 is a popular one too. It’s image of lifting our eyes to the hills speaks to those of use who live in hilly country. Our horizons are filled with hilltops, what lies beyond? That is a mystery.

Psalm 121 is a Psalm of ascents, as in ascending a hill. This Psalm was used for travelers on pilgrimage to Jerusalem. It was sung before departure; during the trip; and on arrival as a celebration that the Lord brought them safely through.

The Psalm speaks of God not letting the travelers foot be moved, as in turning an ankle. The Psalm proclaims that God will watch over the travelers and not fall asleep. God will give shade to the traveler so that the sun doesn’t overwhelm them. God will keep them from evil, God will keep their life.

We may not be on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem but we are on a pilgrimage in life. We are daily travelers with a sacred destination. We depend daily on God’s grace and care to see us through. One day we will arrive at our final destination, but until then we have today to get through.

So keep this scripture close for your travels this summer! Keep it close for you daily journey wherever you find yourself! Our help comes from the Lord, rejoice.

Lord, we look to you for help, keep us safe on this journey of life. Keep all of us safe and we thank you for the daily blessings you send our way. Amen.

Peace, Pastor Dave

Graduation Time!

High-School-Graduation-Christian-Quotes-1Congratulations to all of our graduates! We are so proud of this accomplishment in your life and are surrounding you all with prayer, love and support. Life will change on its own and along with that so will you. Change is a normal part of life, it isn’t always good, nor is it always bad. Change just is, and with those changes you will begin to see God and the Church in a new light as you begin to see your own life in a new light. Those of us older than you have been through it and look how normal we turned out! Hah! Have faith, love God, love your neighbor, trust that Jesus has got you just like he promised when you were baptized.

June 14-16 is the Lacrosse Area Synod Assembly themed “Walk…Pray…Love”. As part of the Assembly there is a special collection taking place! There is a Socks & Underwear Drive happening! You will seen more details in the newsletter.

How will we participate? Each congregation will announce a date and method of collecting donations. These will then be taken to the Synod Assembly by your delegates and become part of a bigger collection by congregations across the Lacrosse Area Synod.

I myself will not be at Synod Assembly. Last year I had booked a group trip to the Boundary Waters up in northern Minnesota. I leave the same day assembly starts and get back the following weekend. My Lutheran guilt is convicting me of not being at my first Synod Assembly here. But I’ve only missed one other time in the twenty-three years I’ve been going to them. Next time!

Blessings to all who will be tending the land as farmers or gardeners this Spring and sowing the seeds. May God protect you, may the weather be favorable, may you rejoice in anticipation of the growth to come.

“Praise and thanksgiving, God, we would offer

for all things living, you have made good:

harvest of sown fields, fruits of the orchard,

hay from the mown fields, blossom and wood.”

Praise and Thanksgiving, ELW #689

Peace,

Pastor Dave Sorenson

Walk the Walk: Shoes for the Journey

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It’s our first Lent together! Our theme for out 2019 Lenten services is “Walk the Walk: Shoes for the Journey” In this series I will compare different kinds of footwear that we commonly use and how they relate to our lives of faith.

This is a series I wrote back in my first call. It’s been used here and there around the country over the years.

As you are able, I invite you to join me in wearing the style of footwear that is the subject of the evening worship. Some weeks you may want to change into that particular footwear at church. Here is the week by week low down:

WALK THE WALK – SHOES FOR THE JOURNEY

March 6th

Ash Wednesday: “The Shoe Rack – Ready for the Journey”

March 13th

Week 1:  “Slippers – Sabbath Rest”

March 20th

Week 2:  “Work Boots – Labor of Faith”

March 27th

Week 3: “Cross-Trainers – Exercising our Faith”

April 3rd

Week 4: “Hiking Boots – Adventures of Faith”

April 10th

Week 5: “Dress Shoes – Giving Our Best”

April 18th

Maundy Thursday: “Sandals – Jesus Washes Feet”

April 19th

Good Friday: “Bare Feet – Death of Jesus”

April 21st

Easter Sunday: “All Shoes – The Journey Continues”

The times and locations of the services are in the newsletter.

Confirmation will be at 5:30 pm at the church we are having service at that night. Food will be provided as always! Bring your bibles!

I know the Holy Spirit will draw us closer to Jesus and one another this Lent. I’m grateful to be on this journey with you.

Love Is In The Air

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13 And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.”               1st Corinthians 13

Usually used at weddings, chapter thirteen of First Corinthians unpacks thoughts about love. The word “love” is used over seven-hundred times in the Bible. But this piece of scripture was not written with weddings in mind, even though love is a relevant topic at a wedding.

But what about the rest of us who are not pledging our vows to someone else at a wedding? Does this scripture have any meaning? What if you aren’t married? Does it still apply? Can it have meaning? Yes, it does and it can.

I like to think of this chapter as describing Jesus. Love is, after all, as Christians what we believe God has shown us first. Now there are a few different words for “love” in the Bible. They help us understand that love is not one-faced. Love is described as love between friends (philos), intimate love between two people (eros), and the sacrificial love of God (agape).

This agape love is the greatest we have received. The love between friends and others doesn’t always last forever, but the love we have received from God in Jesus does. It is eternal, unwavering and in its stubborn nature meant to teach us that it will indeed last forever. Even when we struggle with love for ourselves, each other or God, God does not struggle to love us and hold us forever.

Love doesn’t always last between people, but that is no reason to give up on love. For whether we find joy and lasting fulfillment in our human relationships, we never have to worry about that lack of love coming from God toward us. And in that patient, sacrificing love we can even learn how to love and forgive each other more.

If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”

1st Corinthians 13

Love, Pastor Dave Sorenson

O Come Let Us Adore Him!

Telling the story of Jesus’ birth involves many voices, images and songs. We tell the story because we, like the shepherds, are amazed at what we have seen and heard. Sunday School Christmas Programs at the Four-Point Parish involve participants of all ages. We all get to be part of the story-telling in our daily lives and at the Christmas Program!

A Time To Sing!

The Fish Creek Sunday School had program practice for their Christmas Program this morning. They also visited several church family members on the ridge for caroling! We look forward to the program next Sunday at 11:00.

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Be Our Guest!

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Greetings!

“And the Word became flesh and lived amongst us…” John 1:14a

A blessed Advent and Christmas to you all! I am excited to be with you for this first Advent and Christmas season as your pastor and as a family. The awe of Christmas is in the story, and how we live that story out together.

In celebration of being together, my family is inviting you to the parsonage to celebrate the Advent/Christmas season. As we are welcome in your homes, you are welcome in ours. The open house will be on Sunday, December 16th, from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. We will provide the food, drink and atmosphere. Just bring yourself, your family, a friend, stay as long or short as you like. The game will be on!

Come, Lord Jesus, come,

into the darkness around and within and chase away the shadow of sin;

into our hearts and homes and fill us with your light;

make us shine with your love.

Come, Lord Jesus, come.

Pastor Dave Sorenson