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June 30, 2019

If you see something, say something - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

When we see some way that Jesus through the power of the spirit is at work in the world, at work in our community, at work in our church, at work in our life. When we see that, say something. Make that gracious life-giving work of God in Christ known to others. Testify to that work.. Testify to the grace it holds

June 29, 2019

The mission field - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

You and I are set to live for Christ, in Christ, to be the Christ, here on earth. He will send us that Holy Spirit and we can be assured that he is with us to do the tasks and to serve those that are our neighbors as we reap the fruit from our lives and share with the ones out there in the mission field.

June 23, 2019

There are demons out there - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

There are demons out there and they are legion. Here is the good news. Jesus is out there as well bringing change, change that was for the man once called legion, change that always is the inbreaking of God's reign of light and life.

June 22, 2019

What is my name? - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

Names mean something. When he was born, we hear that his name will be called Jesus for he will save his people from their sins. He will save. He will heal. Jesus, the sweetest name on earth. Jesus, lover of my soul. Jesus healer of the nations. From our hymn book "All Hail the power of Jesus' name let angels prostrate fall, bring forth the royal diadem and crown him Lord of all.' He may be asking you what is your name and knowing your name is critical but he wants to be sure that you know his name.

June 16, 2019

We are all nuts - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

We are all nuts. N.U.T.S. Never Underestimate the Spirit!

June 15, 2019

The Holy Spirit reveals truth - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

The Holy Spirit revealed truths to the disciples following Jesus' death and resurrection and those truths were written in the books we now call the New Testament. We need to sit down in a quiet place and feel the Holy Spirit tell us the direction we need to go in.

June 9, 2019

God's spirit is present with us - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

God's spirit is present with us, anchoring, supporting and guiding all that we are doing, enabling our shared ministry to become more and more complex and expressive and beautiful. BY the grace of God, each one of us is a musician and the gospel of Jesus Christ is the music. Play God's music in the world because God's music brings light and life to the world to those who play it and to those who hear it.

June 8, 2019

With the Father - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 pm)

Many people speak of our home being heaven, but it is more than that. Our home is with the Father. We belong with Him and the way there is to be one with Jesus.

June 2, 2019

Always a "so that" - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

I say from time to time that there is always a "so that" in what God is up to. Jesus prayer, "As You Father are in me, and I am in you, may they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me; so that there will be those who come to confess in this 21st century, that Jesus is Lord as our word spoken to them through word and deed. So that, God's loving mission to, as author Kelly Fryer puts it, "to save, heal, reconcile and set free the whole creation and every single person in it so that, that mission will continue and bear fruit to the end of the age." May it be so.

June 1, 2019

Time to step up and tell others about Jesus Christ - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

We are not going out into the world telling people about Jesus Christ and how your sins are forgiven and you don't have to worry about it. They need us to do that for them. We must be better at letting them know the good news of Jesus.

May 26, 2019

Be thankful - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

One thing we learn from today's lesson from Acts is namely a reminder to be thankful. Thankful for those who at various times in our life witnessed the Gospel to us in word and deed. Thankful that through them God graciously reached out and opened our hearts to listen to the good news of God's helping saving love for us in Jesus.

May 19, 2019

Out on a limb - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Sometimes you have to go out on a limb, because that is where the fruit is. And so here is some good news. God's words to Joshua are words to us as well. Beloved at Hope, be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. God will be with you and never forsake you. Thanks be to our always and ever faithful God.

May 18, 2019

How can I explain Jesus to anyone who does not know Him? - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM)

How can I explain Jesus to anyone who does not know Him? Easy. When they see us loving and reaching out; that's the way we show the love of Jesus in our lives. That is how we show that when we are down and out, we look to the cross and remember the love Jesus had for us, that he died for us. So it should be easy for us to love one another and to reach out in love to one another.

May 11, 2019

Unsnatchable people of God - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 pm)

The uncomfortable faith to which Jesus calls us is nothing less than God's own eternal life, right here and now in this world, in your life, in my life it is the quality of life that never perishes and makes us the unsnatchable people of God.

May 4 and May 5, 2019

My Redeemer Lives - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM, Sunday 8 and 10 am )

Every day is glorious to us because we know, as the song says, "My redeemer lives!"

April 27 and 28, 2019

"Blessed are those that believe and have not seen" - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM, Sunday 8 and 10 am )

Let us remind ourselves, that Jesus is looking to bring reality to your faith. It won't be through a physical appearance as he did with Thomas. But His mercy is evident. It continues to be evident, Will you respond to His mercy'? He leaves a promise to each one of us by saying "Blessed are those that believe and have not seen" That's you and me today. Let us bow and say "My Lord and my God" and give ourselves to him as a living sacrifice!

April 21, 2019

When did Easter happen? - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

No theology, no history dates, the question is plain and simple, "When did Easter happen?" You might at this point be wondering why I am wondering about that? On Good Friday we read seven passages about the death of Jesus and after each passage a candle was extinguished. That got me to thinking about when in the Saturday night to Easter morning di the candle relight? The answer is in today's gospel when the question was asked, "Why do you look for the living among the dead?" He is not here. He has risen!

April 18, 2019

We do not have to say the Lord Jesus is my shepherd - by Pastor Steve (Thursday 7 pm)

It is not that we have to sat that the Lord jesus is my shepherd, it is that we get to say, that we are graciously invited to say, "The Lord Jesus is my shepherd. I belong to him and nothing can change that."

April 14, 2019

Jesus remember me - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 am)

The second criminal on the cross rebuked the first. He said, we are guilty and deserve to be here, but this man (Jesus) has done nothing wrong. Then he said, "Jesus remember me when you come into your kingdom." Jesus replied, "truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise."

April 13, 2019

Crucify him! - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 pm)

Pilate asked three times and the crowd kept shouting, "Crucify him!" and their voices prevailed. So Pilate gave his verdict that their demands should be granted.

April 10, 2019

Open My Life Lord - by Pastor Steve (Wednesday 7 pm)

We pray, Open my life Lord. Not to earn rightness with God, but instead to be better able to perceive God's grace and glory all around us and to live faithfully within that grace and glory.

April 7, 2019

Pay attention - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Pay attention! Something awesome is happening all around us in this world. Realize again and again that our everyday world conceals wonders and mysteries. Thus says the Lord, "I am about to do a new thing." Now it Springs forth, do you not perceive it? Today's gospel tells us that 2000 years ago a woman named Mary did perceive that in Jesus, God was doing a new thing. She perceives Gods new thing where something awesome is happening all around us. A new thing perceived where it was pretty clear people were waiting to arrest Jesus and kill him. She couldn't understand how God's purposes could possibly come about through those events, but knowing that we are not always called to understand the mind of God and perceiving God's presence at work through Jesus; she faithfully and lovingly offered herself - offered her gifts to God's purpose by helping to prepare Jesus for those events. That makes Mary a model of faith for us. We are not called to always understand the mind of God, but we are called to pay attention, to perceive God's purpose springing forth in the world and to faithfully and lovingly offer ourselves and our gifts to the working out of those purposes.

April 6, 2019

The aroma of love - by Deacon John ( Saturday 4:30 PM)

We need to bring the aroma of love and service to others out into the world, not leave it here. When you bring that aroma of love out into the world and let this lingering fragrance of love in Jesus Christ ,to let them know that is a lingering fragrance. It never goes away. His love is always there no matter what we do. You know our acts of loving, extravagant and spontaneous generosity may have changed someone's life. We don't know. I have prayed for people when I've gone to visit in the hospital. I don't know what happened after that, but we might think that something good happened. Jesus entered their lives. Jesus took care of it. See, we don't have to know. We just have to do. We have to go out there and spread that aroma, the aroma of love for the people we meet. You never know when that person we meet might be Jesus himself.

April 3, 2019

Open our heart- by Pastor Steve (Wednesday 7 pm)

Jesus calls us to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength; and to love our neighbor as ourselves. and so open my heart Lord is our prayer for this evening. Open our hearts, Lord, to love of God and neighbor. Sometimes it's the case that we lift our prayers to God and because what we're praying for is beyond our ability to influence, simply entrust those prayers to God's will and work. Open my heart Lord is not one of those prayers. We can work alongside God for the fulfillment of that prayer in our life.

March 31, 2019

A new creation - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

In the second lesson today Paul says this, "So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation. Everything old has passed away. See everything has become new. As for the everything part in the passage, yes, through our baptism that's how God promises to see us. And, no, we are always tempted to lapse into that "I do the very thing I hate" thing. And so God is always working newness in us in many and various ways.

March 24, 2019

God gathers his chicks - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

What we heard at the close of today's confession and forgiveness is that God is like a hen who gathers her chicks. God embraces us and nurtures us with tender like Manna in the desert. God feeds us with surprising mercy like a loving parent, God runs to meet us again this day forgiving our sins for the sake of Christ leading us from death into life.

March 23, 2019

God's presence - by Deacon John ( Saturday 4:30 PM)

We need to be mindful, especially today, of God's presence in our lives. We need to take that presence and share it out there in the mission field. We should have a sign when you're leaving the church that says, "You are now entering the mission field." That is our mission outside these walls and God tells us it's up to us to go out there and spread the Gospel.

March 20, 2019

God's Work, Our Hands- by Pastor Steve (Wednesday 7 pm)

This is what the ELCA says about God's presence and activity in this hurting world. You no doubt have heard it before. God's work, our hands. And so tonight many of Hope's ministers of the gospel, hello that is all of you, have gathered here and have lifted up God's work to the world.

March 17, 2019

Gathered under the wings of Jesus and given risen life - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Three thoughts about life under those wings of Jesus. One, I sometimes wander out from under those wings when I shouldn't. We all do. Maybe we were lured out by what this culture we live in offers or expects. Maybe we strike off in a show of independence. Two, I sometimes don't wander out from under those wings when I should. We all do that, too. In our baptism, along with promise of risen life, we also received purpose. We were called to continue the mission of Jesus in the world. And three, after wandering, whether it was due to drifting or to living out our purpose, after our wandering, we return because under the wings of Jesus is a place of love and safety where we can learn about and become the person God has created us and called us to be.

March 16, 2019

God's judgment is tempered with grace - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM )

God's judgment is tempered with grace, mercy, and the hope of redemption. God, the mother hen, persuades and coaxes us with the hope that we may respond in obedience and humility and be saved. God invites and awaits, hoping that the wayward ones will come home before it is too late.

March 13, 2019

Open our eyes - - by Pastor Steve (Wednesday 7 pm)

Open our eyes Lord so we can see and name the many ways your power and love is poured out into our lives, our world, and our hearts.

March 10, 2019

People of the book - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

We should read the stories that point us to Christ. We internalize them so that they shape and guide and sustain us so that they show us who we are and whose we are. We do that in worship, in Christian education, in the giving of our time and talent to our ministry, and in devotional reading and prayer in mission service to our neighbor. Many people give up something for Lent and that's a wonderful practice. It's called for in our Lenten discipline. But I would suggest that if you don't do this already you also add something - namely a daily time of quiet and prayerful Bible reading. Am I saying that we should put another thing into our busy schedule. No, I'm saying that we should open a gift because I think it's clear that it is gift and blessing to be people of the book.

March 9, 2019

The wilderness times - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM )

Like Jesus, our journey begins in our baptism, but it continues through the wilderness. Sometimes we tend to romanticize about the Christian journey - that it's all about spiritual highs and feeling of contentment. But we know better than that. Just look at the news every day. So if we're struggling with our faith, struggling with our prayer life, struggling in our worship life; it's not a sign that we're off track. No, I think the chances are that we are right on track and can take comfort that the track is leading us to the promised land, to the eternal life with God that was promised us. So don't be afraid of journey through the wilderness. Remember what Jesus did, PRAY! Ask God to get your back. Don't listen to the other guy who wants you to go the other way. Just tell him sorry, for Jesus went to the cross for me. Adios, Satan.

March 6, 2019

The ashes - - by Pastor Steve (Ash Wednesday 7 pm)

It's the water that carries the ashes away, so as you wash off the ashes consider their doing so can be thought of as a kind of symbolic action to remind us that through water, the water of baptism, God gives us new and eternal life by grass crafting us into the new and eternal life in Christ divine.

March 3, 2019

Don't just do something, sit there - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

We do well time and time again to sit in the shining light of Jesus, because the Lord is our shepherd. It is his voice that guides us along right pathways for his namesake as we travel through the world and its various commercials and advertisements and other voices. It is the light of Jesus which anoints our heads with oil embracing us as children of God, calling us holy and precious in God's sight. It is the shining light of Jesus that is our abundance, our hope, our way and our peace .

February 24, 2019

Forgive - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Gracious God your son called on you to forgive his enemies while he was suffering shame and death. Lead our enemies and us from prejudice to truth and by your holy spirit guide us to be able to forgive our enemies.

February 23, 2019

By our actions - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM )

It is always by our actions and not by our words that we spread the Gospel Good News. By our actions people are seeing a reflection of what God is offering today. The best part is we benefit from that miracle that is happening in our heart.

February 17, 2019

Blessed - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

May Christ dwell in our hearts through faith as we are being rooted and grounded in love. Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish far more than all we can ask or imagine. To him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. And so how are you this morning? Blessed!

February 16, 2019

Jesus reminds us here that there is always another side to what we experience - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

When we are full, we can be sure that we will one day be empty again, and that the only true fullness that endures is from God. When we are weeping, we can be sure that we will one day laugh and rejoice, and that our joy is from God. For every part of life, there is another angle that God holds before us, ensuring that we do not forget God's presence and power infused in everything we do and through everything we live.

February 10, 2019

Holy, Holy, Holy the whole earth is full of God's glory - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Realize that we are in the presence of the Lord because we see the unveiled majesty of God not on this side but on the other. Here we see the instances of grace, instances of hope, instances of peace. Then we know that the Lord is in that place, but I suppose recognizing that we are in the presence of the Lord is even simpler than that. We remind ourselves every week through the song before communion "Holy, Holy, Holy, the whole earth is full of God's glory.

February 9, 2019

Where did you see God this week? - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM )

In our normal everyday life God is with us. He is there but we have to see it, we have to feel it. If so we will certainly encounter it. You see that God is not only with us in worship but in u every day lives. So maybe at the end of this week when it comes ask, "Where did I see God this week? Where did I see God in my comings and goings this week?"

February 3, 2019

Following Jesus is challenging - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

Following Jesus is challenge. But, we embrace the challenge because we don't face the challenge alone. It is not all up to us. God guides and sustains us in our life of discipleship through holy word, holy sacraments, and holy gathered community. We move through the challenge with God and each other and so we often do pretty well at succeeding at the challenge of following Jesus.

February 2, 2019

The Super Bowl of all Good News - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM )

Jesus has already accomplished everything you need for this life and for the next. Focus on the cross. Focus on the empty tomb. Focus on God's love for us that he sent his only son to die for us and for our sins. And he comes off the cross for us, for our sins and he holds us in his arms, and he loves us. That's why God sent his son for us. That is the good news, that is the Super Bowl of all Good News – that Jesus comes off the cross for us.

January 27, 2019

I will hold your people in my heart - by Pastor Steve ((Sunday 8 and 10 am)

God asks, "Who will bear my light to them? Whom shall I send?" Enable us to answer those questions by singing, "I will go lord. Filled with the power of your spirit, I will hold your people in my heart."

January 26, 2019

Believe or not believe? - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

The people listening to Jesus in Luke got so upset because Jesus dared to identify himself as the person that Isaiah was talking about. The people present to hear Jesus strongly disagreed. For them Jesus just did not fit the mold of a Messiah.

January 20, 2019

The hills are flowing with wine - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

All the love of God was sent in Jesus and that it was sent for us. The hills flow with wine.

January 19, 2019

Am I open to participating with Jesus? - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM)

It's not a question of being worthy, because no one is worthy, but love sees beyond worthiness and seeks to work together. Am I willing to be used by God?

January 13, 2019

Why be baptized? - by Pastor Steve ((Sunday 8 and 10 am)

"I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit! You have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever." When you hear these words you will see eyes that hold tears and peace and joy. That is why one should be baptized - grace and grace and grace upon grace!


January 12, 2019

God does not change His mind - by Deacon John (Saturday 4:30 PM )

When we were little infants and we were baptized, God said to us, "you are my child." God does not change His mind and now that we are adults, we are still God's child. We should thank God for instituting baptism because it means something to us and what a joy to know that God says to us, "I have called you by name. You are mine. You are my child forever.

January 6, 2019

We join the Magi - by Pastor Steve (Sunday 8 and 10 am)

We are here today because we cannot do what is necessary alone. Her is where God graciously guides us and nourishes us in our life of releasing and embracing. He nourishes us through word, sacrament, service and holy community. We are here because today we join the Magi in reveling Christ's glory to the nations as we fall to our knees in praise of the king of kings.

January 5, 2019

Times of grace - by Deacon Diane (Saturday 4:30 PM )

But there are times of grace when we break through from the weight of the world and all its distractions to see salvation through Christ and our redemption from sin. We truly see the light, rather than hiding from it or observing it from oblique angles. Those are the times when we most become like the magi at the feet of Christ, experiencing not just our own epiphanies but His Epiphany.

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