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WEEKLY DEVOTION MAY 24

Tuesday, MAY 24, 2022

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

“A Fruitful Vine and Olive Shoots”

READING: Psalm 128 – Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in his ways. You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your sons will be like olive shoots around your table. Thus is the man blessed who fears the Lord. May the Lord bless you from Zion all the days of your life; may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem, and may you live to see your children’s children. Peace be upon Israel.

A couple of weekends ago I had a mini-vacation in the Red River Gorge area of Eastern Kentucky. (I mentioned it in last week’s Devotion.) We were only there Friday evening, all day Saturday, and most of Sunday morning. Our last family event was lunch at “Fat Burger” in Winchester before heading back home. It was a wonderful break from the normal routine. We had a good time in spite of the thunderstorms on Friday and the on-again, off-again rain on Saturday. There was hiking for the hardy, fishing with my grandsons, canoeing in the lake, and a whole lot of wonderful food. We had a great time.

My son Dan had rented a very large cabin for himself and his family, then invited Becky and me, our daughter Christa and her family, and even my brother Larry. There were 12 of us in all, and we had plenty of beds and couches to accommodate each one of us. We took turns with the cooking, everyone pitched in with the clean-up, and a washer and dryer made for clean clothes as well. I helped each of my grandsons to catch a fish. I caught 10 bluegills and a largemouth bass. Various ones went hiking several different times. Larry enjoyed sitting on the deck and smoking big cigars. There was something for everyone.

All of which brings me to Psalm 128. As I thought back on the weekend I found myself counting up my blessings. That Sunday was Mother’s Day so naturally I found myself thanking God for my wife and the mother of my three children – the “Fruitful Vine”. I had my son and my son-in-law, Nick, there each cooking a meal, playing Euchre with Larry and me, and teaching and playing with their children – the “Olive Shoots”. Then there were with us five of my eight grandchildren who each managed to give me hugs throughout the weekend and delight me with what they already know and can do. I watched them scamper up the trails on Sunday, curious about all kinds of things. I’m so glad I’ve lived to see my “children’s children”.

It’s interesting to see how different the perspective was with the ancients when it came to expectations in life. We expect to live at least long enough to see our “children’s children”. Shoot, we expect to have a very good chance to live to see a few of our “children’s children’s children” – our great-grandchildren. Our life expectancy is so much greater than those of old. They had no antibiotics, no immunizations, no vitamins. While they ate healthier foods than we do, there was also less of it, and all was prone to drought and famine. Accidents could lead to crippling with no surgeons to make repairs. A man of 60 was old indeed. A woman of 70 or 80 considered ancient. We expect to see folks of 90 and even 100 on a regular basis.

Yet what made a man truly blessed was “to fear the Lord”. This didn’t mean to live in fear of his judgement and punishment. Rather it points to the ones who knew of the Lord’s grace, his expectation of obedience, and a reverence for his worthiness and majesty. Those who “fear the Lord” trust in his mercy, seek his forgiveness, and live in a relationship with God that leads them to abhor the things that would bring sorrow or disrespect to God. The Psalmist says that to walk in God’s ways leads to a life of fulfillment and appreciation. Such a person delights in the simple gifts of marriage, family, and the “fruit of one’s labor”.

Spending a weekend with the family I love reminded me once again how blessed I’ve been. Do I deserve these blessings? No. I’m a sinner, sure and by gosh. But one of the most important qualities of a life in Christ is gratitude. Without gratitude pride and self-righteousness are inevitable. Then we are lured to think, “My own strong right arm has gained me the victory!” We take the credit that is certainly due the Lord. We can’t humble ourselves, and if we can’t humble ourselves, we can never praise and thank the Lord properly. Then the blessings are seen as wages and trophies. The world is turned upside down, and we put ourselves where God should be.

Take some time to count your blessings, the simple and the complex. Take some time to give the Lord thanks for each and every one. Remember from whence comes your life and all it contains. Then, in the fear of the Lord, worship him with a humble heart. Rejoice that by sending his Son Jesus into the world he has already secured your eternity. So, as the Psalmist says in verse 5, “May the Lord bless you from Zion all the days of your life.” O give thanks unto the Lord! Amen.

PRAYER:

ANNOUNCEMENT(S):

1)

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

pastork@glcna.com — (502) 797-7407

PRINTABLE PDF: WDMay24.PDF

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WEEKLY DEVOTION MAY 23

Monday, MAY 23, 2022

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

“I Don’t Like To Wait!”

I don’t like to wait. I don’t like to wait because it usually means that the ability to move things forward is not in my hands. Recently, I waited with a family at an ER (I won’t say who we waited for right now—sorry). We were there with the family from 9AM til 11PM sitting outside in the weather—thankfully it was a decent day. All the while we waited anticipating the patient would move from the ER to the OR.

Well, I learned quickly what both of those mean. “Er…I think it will be soon”…”Er…I don’t think it will be much longer.” “Er…I don’t really know when.” And OR means, “The surgery is scheduled for 1PM OR 2PM or 5PM or maybe later.” Only one visitor at a time meant also we could only go in one at a time sharing the same visitor’s badge. And all the while we waited, we didn’t know if we could to leave to get some food or something and/or stay because we held on anticipating anytime an important surgery would take place.

Turning to a different example–Waiting in traffic means waiting for everyone to narrow into the one lane and be cooperative. But there’s always people who have to get ahead of you and me and drive all the way up as far ahead as they can get and then cut in. Which, of course, slows everything down.

Another example: Waiting in line for a roller coaster depends on how fast they can get the people loaded and unloaded each time the machine comes in. Waiting in line at the doctors depends on how overbooked the schedule is for that day. But waiting at the ER always depends on who is more serious. The day we were at the ER several helicopters came and went. It has to be real bad for someone to be flown in. This naturally means they need attention first and OR’s first. But this also delayed things for the patient we came to support.

We eventually left the hospital and were home by 11PM-ish. I was glad to get home and got to bed. But the waiting is hard because it depends on someone other than me doing something. It depends on the mechanics of the day coming together in a constructive way that meets the need at hand. Waiting feels helpless but it is never passive.

While we waited, we encouraged one another. Prayed for the patient. We talked and caught up on a lot of things. We even got to meet the co-workers of the patient who all came up to see how their friend and colleague was doing, which was heart-warming. The waiting didn’t happen in a vacuum. There was substance to it. It was boring too, don’t get me wrong. But a lot of it had some good too. And in our case, we knew that the surgery would do some good and provide a healing. It was more like waiting for the rollercoaster than on a Politician. At least at some point (Most of the time) you know that you will get to ride the coaster. The anticipation of something worthwhile would happen eventually…”Er…Sometime that day at least.”

Consider those who had waited on the Lord. Abraham waited 25 years for Isaac to be born. His waiting was filled acts of obedience to the Lord. Jacob waited 14 years for Rachel, and worked diligently for His Uncle Laban and increased his own flocks in the process. David waited for twenty years to fully be king of Israel. Simeon and Anna waited their whole lives in hopes of seeing the Messiah. But perhaps the one I relate to most is Joseph who was unfairly sold into slavery by his own brothers, traded to work for Potiphar, and then ends up in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Joseph didn’t exactly know that what may happen to him but none-the-less remained utterly faithful to the Lord.

Perhaps I would relate our waiting the other day to Joseph’s time in prison. Consider Genesis 39:9-23. 9 So the chief cupbearer told Joseph his dream. He said to him, “In my dream I saw a vine in front of me, 10 and on the vine were three branches. As soon as it budded, it blossomed, and its clusters ripened into grapes. 11 Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand, and I took the grapes, squeezed them into Pharaoh’s cup and put the cup in his hand.”

12 “This is what it means,” Joseph said to him. “The three branches are three days. 13 Within three days Pharaoh will lift up your head and restore you to your position, and you will put Pharaoh’s cup in his hand, just as you used to do when you were his cupbearer. 14 But when all goes well with you, remember me and show me kindness; mention me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison. 15 I was forcibly carried off from the land of the Hebrews, and even here I have done nothing to deserve being put in a dungeon.”

20 Now the third day was Pharaoh’s birthday, and he gave a feast for all his officials. He lifted up the heads of the chief cupbearer and the chief baker in the presence of his officials: 21 He restored the chief cupbearer to his position, so that he once again put the cup into Pharaoh’s hand— 22 but he impaled the chief baker, just as Joseph had said to them in his interpretation.

23 The chief cupbearer, however, did not remember Joseph; he forgot him.

For two full years Joseph waited for the cup-bearer to remember. He waited for the cupbearer to keep his word and had no power to move things along any faster. Joseph wanted the cup-bearer to remember him so he could get out of that difficult place. Who wouldn’t? But all the while he waited, he filled his waiting with service worthy of the Lord. So faithful was Joseph at taking care of the prison that the warden left everything in his care. What’s more, like the godly people we mentioned above the one who remembers is the Lord Himself just like when he worked at Potifar’s house. Jesus will never forget you nor His promises to you. Jesus who keeps all promises has also promised that our Labor in the Lord is never in vain (1 Corinthians 15:58). Neither is our waiting.

Joseph suffered greatly in his waiting. He put up with a lot of trouble he didn’t ask for nor want. But he served the Lord faithfully in the context of his waiting. We are encouraged to do no less. We cannot control all that goes on around us. We can however, choose how we wait. Our waiting can have substance. It may mean standing outside of a hospital just to be available if called upon. Waiting may provide opportunity for prayer and for a chance to become ready for something else as was the case with Joseph. His waiting groomed him to become the instrument that would save his family from starvation. Waiting may be what we need to cool our anger, or gain an ear to listen, or even to humble ourselves for repentance. Waiting can build an appreciation for what God may provide.

I understand that not all waiting results in a good outcome as it did this last week. But I can still say that waiting especially with others can summon grace in a way that is at least comforting. I am always grateful when I see someone give up their day to be with someone who needs the company while waiting. It holds its own compassion and healing. May the Lord grant us patience. May the Lord grant us wisdom to make the most of our waiting. And may our waiting for the Lord’s return bless us with great anticipation and appreciation for eternal life in Jesus.

Pastor Matthew Woods

John 3:30

PRINTABLE PDF: WDMay23.PDF

Youtube Video: https://youtu.be/6EyIj0bA-gU

matt.woods@glcna.com — (502) 523-9327

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“REGISTRATION — VBS STUDENT”

2022 Grace Lutheran VBS June 26-29th

“JESUS”

“Since you are precious in My sight, Since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.” —- Isaiah 43-4

Sunday June 26 through Wednesday June 29 with Closing Finale at 8 PM.
VBS — Supper: 5:30 pm Classes: 6:25-8:15 pm

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER A
STUDENT FOR VBS!

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VBS

PASTOR WOODS NEEDS YOUR HELP WITH BUILDING THE VBS SET.
EVERY WEDNESDAY 3 PM UNTIL 8 PM
GIVE US AN HOUR OR TWO,
IF YOU DON’T HAVE ALL DAY

2022 Grace Lutheran VBS June 26-29th

“JESUS”

“Since you are precious in My sight, Since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.”

—- Isaiah 43-4

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VBS VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!

SIGNUP TO VOLUNTEER FOR VBS.
We need volunteers to commit to helping with Bible Lessons, crafts, skits, group leaders and helpers. Background checks and safety training are required. If you already completed them last year, they are still valid and you will not need to complete it again. This means that volunteers will also have to preregister by June 10. Contact Rosie with any questions at rebling@glcna.com or call at 502-523-1474.

2022 Grace Lutheran VBS June 26-29th

“JESUS”

“Since you are precious in My sight, Since you are honored and I love you, I will give other men in your place and other peoples in exchange for your life.”

—- Isaiah 43-4

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER TO VOLUNTEER!

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WORSHIP SCHEDULE

Saturday, May 21 — *5:00 pm
8th Grade Confirmation (10:30)
Sunday, May 22 — 8:00 & *10:30 am
Saturday, May 28 — 5:00 pm
Sunday, May 29 — 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