Nov
29

The Good News of Jesus

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We have entered the holiday season with its vast variety of activities and events. We can sometimes be so busy that we become overwhelmed in our individual lives and families, and even with all that is happening in our congregation, beginning with Thanksgiving worship, wrapping up Stewardship responses and Ministry Planning for 2019, decorating our facilities for Advent/Christmas, the church Bazaar, Christmas caroling to homebound members and friends, the choir Cantata, and Christmas Eve Candlelight worship. In the midst of all of this, first and foremost we need to keep in mind that it is all about Jesus Christ!

The baby Savior quietly enters our world with God making his grand and glorious announcement by means of an army of angels out in the fields, not in the big city, only to a few shepherds, and then with a strange star in the sky to a few wise men from the east. Most of the world was unaware of the birth of the Son of God. Perhaps God is telling us and the whole world that we need to slow down, pause, be silent and stand in awe of this miraculous birth. Put aside all of the hectic activity enough to pay attention to Jesus! While the activities of our congregation might seem like just more to do, most of them help us focus our attention on Jesus.

Since this is the last Christmas Season I will be celebrating with you at Peace, I will be especially mindful as your pastor to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ so that the newborn Savior enters your hearts and minds, and you can share the Good News with the people around you. Our worship time together is especially meaningful, so I hope you will take full advantage of the opportunities to hear God’s Word and receive his Holy Sacrament. This is how God strengthens our faith and relationship with him, and touches our lives in a personal and profound way.

“To us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Might God Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6) “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of Bethlehem a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11) Come let us adore Him! Worship Christ the newborn King!

Pastor Kurt Wandrey

I want to clarify my future plans so that there is no confusion and no one is caught off guard. We are in our transition period, a time since last June, when we have all known that my leaving Peace Lutheran Church is on the horizon. The last Sunday in February will be the last Sunday Diann and I will be with you. It is proper protocol for a pastor who leaves a congregation to get out of the way of the new pastor coming, and make sure the congregation is prepared with arrangements for new pastoral ministry.

Some of you have already been expressing your thoughts, which I appreciate. I welcome your sharing with me between now and February anything significant you have learned from me in a sermon or in a class, ways I may have had a positive influence for you (you may keep the negative to yourself), or ways that I have been privileged to serve as your pastor through joyful or difficult times. I’m not looking for compliments, just meaningful moments that we can both hold on to in the days and years ahead. There is still plenty of time left, although it will probably pass quickly!