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WEEKLY DEVOTION AUGUST 16

Tuesday, AUGUST 16, 2022

Pastor Bruce Kischnick, Grace Lutheran Church, New Albany, IN

“Well, That Stinks!”

READING: Romans 3:9-13a, 19-22 – What shall we conclude then? Are we any better? Not at all! We have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.” “Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit…” Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. Therefore no one will be declared righteous by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of the sin. But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe…

A week or so ago, Becky discovered a skunk in our swimming pool. It had fallen in and couldn’t get out. It swam until exhausted and drowned. I found it in the skimmer basket. When I pulled it out, I was immediately enveloped by a cloud of stench that made me gag! My eyes watered. I tried to breathe through my mouth, but the stink of that skunk still assaulted my nose in a most grievous way. I ran to the garage for a shovel and a garbage bag. But the thing was so limp and wet it just rolled when I tried to shovel it up. Finally, I had no choice but to pick it up by its tail and drop it in the bag. The bag went into my trash can. It stunk that up, too. The next morning I finally buried the skunk deep in my garden. I also buried the bag, threw away a hat, a pair of gloves, and a T-shirt. All of them were forever tainted.

But what about me? I scrubbed and scrubbed in the shower. I shampooed my hair vigorously, twice! I used extra cologne. I did all I could to rid myself of the taint. And all that day I could smell that skunk on me! I don’t think anyone else got close enough to me to be offended. I’m not sure it was all that noticeable to others, but I had skunk stuck in my nose all day! Not only that, but the two fingers I used to pick up that skunk by its tail smelled strongly of skunk for three days. Even pickle juice couldn’t get rid of it! I just smelled pickled skunk! It was horrible! I could not rid myself of the odor – and that was just from the cloud of stink! Imagine if a skunk actually sprayed its musk on you! It would take forever to get rid of that stench.

St. Paul in our reading for today says all human beings STINK. All of us are tainted by the smell of sin which to God smells of death. And all people are in the same boat – Jews, Gentiles, Greeks, Barbarians, men, women, children. There is no difference. Because the law holds all people accountable to God, and since no one, not one, can keep the law perfectly and completely at all times, all of us smell of sin, and we CANNOT RID OURSELVES of its stench. Try as we might, good intentions not withstanding we stand before God sinful and unclean. We are that way by nature, and no amount of sacrifice, fasting, alms-giving, and do-gooding can cover the smell of our sin before God. We stink!

Just like the smell of that skunk on me, sin just clings to us. The very idea that we could by law-keeping be righteous and holy before God is ludicrous. That’s the religion of the world. Every ancient religion, every modern religion, even within Christian circles, the idea persists that human beings can make themselves presentable to the gods or the universe by doing good works. St. Paul puts the lie to that idea by pointing out the truth: we cannot get the taint of sin off of us.

Our only hope is God’s grace in Christ Jesus! By his perfect life, his sacrificial death, and his amazing resurrection, we receive a righteousness from God that comes through faith in Jesus. The stench of sin is absorbed and obliterated by the mercy of God that is ours through the gift of his Son. By faith we can stand one day justified before God, not by what we’ve done but by what Jesus has done for us. It is a sweet fragrance life that comes from us because of what he did.

If I NEVER smell the scent of skunk again, it will be too soon! We had a fox terrier on the farm when I was a boy who cornered and tangled with a skunk. That dog was saturated with the spray. He stank for weeks and weeks after that. No way to get rid of it. No way to smell better. St. Paul says that left to our own devices we could never rid ourselves of sin and its smell of death. But thanks be to God and our Lord Jesus Christ, we will be a pleasing fragrance in God’s nostrils when that day comes. Until then, we try to serve him in thanksgiving for all he has done and promised. We smell GOOD because of Jesus. Amen.

PRAYER:

ANNOUNCEMENT(S):

Tomorrow evening Grace on Wednesday will kick off once again. Supper at 5:30. Classes 6-7:30. Encourage any parents you know to get their kids into these classes. And we’ll have at least one adult class that starts that evening, too. Join us. It’s one of the best ways for young and old to learn the stories and lessons of the Bible.

Youtube Video: https://youtu.be/KNduIN0XcB4

PRINTABLE PDF: WDAug16.PDF

pastork@glcna.com — (502) 797-7407

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WEEKLY DEVOTION AUGUST 15

Monday, AUGUST 15, 2022

Pastor Matthew Woods from Grace Lutheran Church in New Albany, Indiana

“Family Photo”

Remember the days when if you wanted a family photo done you would have to go to a photo place and have them taken professionally? We used to take pictures of the boys at Sears on their birthdays, when they were seniors in high school, and when they got married and so on. It was almost always for a special occasion or to mark a special time in our lives. Such is the case with church directories as well. Often a church directory marks an anniversary or special time in the church’s life.

Not too many years ago if you wanted a picture, you had to make an appointment and wait for one of the studios to open up. The last time I can remember doing this was for dad’s 70th birthday. My sister and her family were in town. We all dressed up and carted ourselves to a store that took photographs.

The photographer had all of us stand together with white backdrop behind us. It took an hour to take all the pictures and then we had to come back to pick them up after they had been developed. Of course, there was also a time way back when we would have to wait for weeks for the pictures to be developed. Not anymore.

Now taking a picture is as quick as taking out your phone and snapping a shot. We still take a lot of shots of special things. We took hundreds of pictures when we were in Alaska last year. We captured as much as we could. But now a days, we take so many pictures we don’t really know what to do with them all. Many of us are running around with hundreds of pictures on our phone. We may even buy extra cloud space just so we can keep them. And often we upload them to the internet because we want everyone to see them. And isn’t that the whole point; to take a photo that we want everyone else to see. We want others to see our special day. We, ourselves want to remember all those special days.

Here’s the thing…all the pictures we take are of the past; something that has happened. Pictures show what used to be and freezes in time an important memory. No one takes a picture of the future. No one can.

Revelations 7:9-17 is exactly that. 9 After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. 10 And they cried out in a loud voice:

“Salvation belongs to our God,

who sits on the throne,

and to the Lamb.”

11 All the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures. They fell down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying:

“Amen!

Praise and glory

and wisdom and thanks and honor

and power and strength

be to our God for ever and ever.

Amen!”

13 Then one of the elders asked me, “These in white robes—who are they, and where did they come from?”

14 I answered, “Sir, you know.”

And he said, “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Revelation 7:9-17 is a family photo of what is yet to come. It’s not an anniversary. It’s not a senior picture or church directory photograph. The pictures and movies we take here on this side of eternity are all capture in time. This picture doesn’t have any time stamp on it. It’s an active picture. It’s a picture of God’s people in heaven and it comes in focus more and more as our hope grows in Jesus. We can see all those people. They come from many races and backgrounds and languages. (Won’t it be cool to be able to understand one another completely without barriers!). They are all dressed up in the robes of righteousness. They are happy and filled with joy. None are older than another nor does anyone have even the slightest evidence of any kind of brokenness. “These are they who have come out of the great tribulation…washed in the blood of the lamb.” Nothing separates them from God or from one another. They are glad to be together. They are all together for a special occasion, namely the beginning of eternity. Everyone is present and accounted for. They are happy to be together and celebrating their homecoming. We can see them and we can hear them praising God in loud voices.

Look closely. It is a family picture of the future. It’s a picture strictly limited to believers of Christ. No one who isn’t family gets to photo bomb this picture. No one that I’m aware of takes family pictures of strangers and random people. The idea is to capture those who belong there. There is hope in this picture because strangers can become family. None of us actually deserve to be in this picture but grace we have been welcomed in. Imagine all the people we will get to meet there. We have been promised a place in the Lord’s kingdom. By grace our baptisms mark us as children of God. By grace our faith unlocks the door.

This brings me to this last thought. If you were to look at the photos of our boys’ wedding day pics or of dad’s birthday pic I can see myself in them. Look at the picture of heaven and you will see yourself standing next to loved ones long gone…your great, great, many greats, grandparents. But look even closer. You may see your great, great, many great grandchildren as well. The picture is timeless and full of life. All who believe in Jesus are in this picture. The Lord shares this picture with us so that we may hope in the Lord. It is for us to understand that we have a destination and a place to belong. And at the center of it all is Jesus who is eager to welcome us into that great kingdom. In Jesus. Amen.

Pastor Matthew Woods

John 3:30

PRINTABLE PDF: WDAug15.PDF

Youtube Video: https://youtu.be/BfXu6ATaCMI

matt.woods@glcna.com — (502) 523-9327

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Contact Sabrina.Haug@glcna.com for more information.
LINK FOR SIGNUP: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0E48A4A82BAAFCC52-grace

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Lemonade and Lavender LUNCHEON

Held Sunday August 7 – Fireside Room after late service
Make A Sunshine Basket to Encourage Someone. Enjoy a delicious menu of Salads,
Strawberry Short Cake, Lavender Gluten Free Muffins, and Lavender Lemonade.
Wear Hats and Sundresses if you like. Come and Join in all the Fun Activities we have
planned

MORE PHOTOS HERE!

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CLICK HERE TO SIGN-UP FOR THE ARK Encounter!

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LifeLight Adult Bible Class


An adult Bible class for both men and women will start at church in the Boardroom on Wednesday evenings beginning August 17th from 6:00-7:30 pm. We will be studying the book of Romans. Please feel free to come join us.

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Pastor’s Classes

JOIN US FOR PASTOR’S CLASS STARTING SEPTEMBER 11, 2022
Pastor’s Class is an Instruction course designed to serve as an Adult Confirmation class by which non-members may become communicant members of the congregation. It is a Seekers class for those drawn to Christianity and wanting to know more about deciding on a particular church, and it is a Refresher course for members who have been out of confirmation class for a time and want to review Christian doctrine from a Lutheran perspective. The classes are Sundays from 1:00-3:00 p.m. at church beginning September 11 and will be held for eight Sundays. Please contact Pastor Kischnick at 502-797-7407 if you have any questions.

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WORSHIP SCHEDULE

Saturday, August 20 — *5:00 pm
Sunday, August 21 — *8:00 & 10:30 am
Saturday, August 27 — 5:00 pm
Sunday, August 28 — 8:00 & *10:30 am
*Communion

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CHILDREN’S MINISTRY NOTES


Grace Notes started as a children’s version of the confirmation level Sermon Notes. It has grown to two full pages front and back with Bible verses according to the weekly church readings, pictures illustrating stories or verses, a prayer box, and puzzles. Grace Notes are part of the Grace Packs (single use church bags) available on Sundays.

Grace Notes are an awesome way to build on the online service as an opportunity for devotion and discussion.

Grace Online – Children’s Bible Lessons!

FOLLOW THIS LINK TO THE CHILDRENS MINISTRY PAGE!

Children’s Ministry Contact Information
Email: sabrina.haug@glcna.com
Phone/Text: 502-386-6371
Facebook: Grace Lutheran Children’s Ministry
Web: www.glcna.org – click Children’s Ministry in right-side Index

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For more information (Your Bulletin) check out
NEWS & TIDBITS at the top right box

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For more Devotions check out RECENT DEVOTIONS
at the top right box

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CHECK OUT BAPTISM – OBITS

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For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works so that no one can boast. — Ephesians 2:8-9
https://glcna.org/wp-admin/admin.php?page=cgmp-documentation
 

Welcome to the Grace Lutheran Church and School web site. There is a variety of information here regarding our congregation and our beliefs. Lutherans are Bible-believing, sacramental Christians who trace their roots back to Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation. There have been Lutherans since 1517, particularly in Germany and Scandanavia. Lutherans in America followed large immigrations from Europe in the 1840’s and 1850’s.

The congregation at Grace was founded in 1927 in a small room over a pool hall on State Street in New Albany. The congregation moved to Tenth and Oak, then to Charlestown Road, before building its current facilities on Klerner Lane in 1974. The congregation now numbers just over 1100 souls. We worship at 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. on Sundays and at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday evenings. The pastors are Rev. Bruce Kischnick and Rev. Matt Woods.

 

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Rev. Bruce Kischnick, Senior Pastor

pastork@glcna.com — (502) 797-7407
 

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Rev. Matt Woods, Associate Pastor

Matt.Woods@glcna.com — (502) 523-9327

 
 

Rose Ebling, Part-time Interim Youth Director

rebling@glcna.com — (502) 442-1474

 
 
 

Sabrina Haug, Children Ministry

Sabrina.Haug@glcna.com 
 
 

Helen Bohannon, Music Director

Helen.Bohannon@glcna.com

 
 

Georgianne Weathers, School Administrator (812) 941-1912

E-Mail: Georgianne.Weathers@glcna.com
preschool@glcna.com
www.gracelutheran.school

 
 

Karen.Meredith, Church Secretary

Karen.Meredith@glcna.com