Beloved Concordia Family,
It almost seems impossible to believe that we are bearing down on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the end of 2013! The time seems to fly by so quickly. Please be sure, in the midst of the fast-paced lives in which we live, to take the time for three things: Bible reading, prayer, and to be in an accountability relationship with some trustworthy people.
Christmas from the Heart
On the topic of Christmas, I hope you are able to help with the Christmas from the Heart projects at Concordia this Holiday Season. We already began publicizing them last weekend because some of the deadlines will come up VERY quickly.
Jesus Christ, MD …
The healings Jesus performs are some of the most puzzling stories in Scripture. At the same time that they are clearly miraculous, they are also shrouded in much mystery. Inevitably, when reading these stories, people ask: Why did Jesus heal so many people back then, but He doesn’t heal my loved one or me now? Why do people get sick? Is it because of some unconfessed sin? Does Jesus have an obligation to heal me if I just have enough faith? In this series, we will answer these questions and others all while we find comfort in the One who can heal not only our bodies, but promises to heal our eternities.
Our theme verse for this series is, “Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases” (Psalm 103:2-3). The text for this weekend is:
A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.” Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said. He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” “Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. Matthew 15:22-28
Faith: Some people seem to treat faith as if it is a magical healing force. “You can be healed,” some will say, “if you have enough faith.” But faith is not a force; it is a trust relationship with Jesus. While faith is only as good as what it trusts in, the Canaanite woman from the Gospel for today puts her faith in Jesus and that isn’t good … it’s GREAT! Jesus loves her and wants to help her and her daughter.
I hope you will plan to be a part of worship this weekend. Please invite a friend to join us as we honor our veterans during our weekend services.
Your pastor loves you!