Working Together to Make a Difference

September 25th, 2015

Dear Disciples of Jesus at American Lutheran,

The burdens of daily life can get heavy-especially when we try to bear them alone. Likewise the work of the church can get feel like a burden if left only to some people. Thank goodness the Holy Spirit is poured out generously on everyone within the community of faith-and even on those outside the community of faith-in order to accomplish God’s purposes. When the Spirit is shared among us, we can work together, as one, to bear God’s healing, hope and compassion to the world.

See you in church,

Pastor Gretchen

Keep Asking Questions

September 18th, 2015

Have you ever failed to ask a question out of fear or embarrassment? Someone once said, “Never be afraid to ask questions! It’s better to seem a fool for a minute than to be one for the rest of your life.” Asking questions doesn’t necessarily mark a lack of intelligence. It’s a mark of curiosity and eagerness to learn.  And when it comes to faith, when we ask honest questions within the safety of the community, God draws closer to help us better understand and grow as Christians.

So keep asking–even if the answers may take awhile–even if they never come. The Spirit is at work as we engage together in conversation about what it means to be faithful people of God.

See you in church,

Pastor Gretchen

The Power of God

September 11th, 2015

Dear disciples of Jesus at American Lutheran,

It’s a familiar calling we’ve heard before: to take up our cross and follow Jesus. Familiar, yet hard to do. It means that nothing can stand in the way of loving God and loving others–even if it means suffering and painBecause even our suffering can be transformed by the power of God, who brings hope from despair and life out of death.

Your Servant in Christ,

Pastor Gretchen

Be Opened: Healing comes in many forms

September 4th, 2015

Dear disciples of Jesus at American Lutheran,

Each week we lift up prayers of healing for the many people on our active prayer list, as well as the names on the prayer chalkboard outside our building. Yet healing comes in many forms. Not just for individuals who need healing in body, mind or spirit. We also need healing for our fragile earth, as well as healing from the racial prejudice that is so prevalent right now.

In the Gospel this week we hear an amazing story where Jesus is not only the bearer of healing, but is healed himself through the actions of a persistent foreigner. How might we be opened to the unexpected people and places for whom God is working to bring healing now?

Your Servant in Christ,

Pastor Gretchen