Encourage One Another

It arrived at the end of a long, hard day. My briefcase seemed to weigh a ton as I lugged it to my car and threw it into the back seat. I couldn’t wait to get home. Just one more thing to do, and I was calling it quits; check the mail. And, there, among the church resource catalogues and the flyers for trips to the Holy Lands and appeals for aid to worthy causes was a plain, brown envelope with my name on it, marked “Personal”. A card, from the looks of it. I got in my car, and motor running, opened the envelope and read, “If you have ever wondered whether you have made an impact on someone else’s life… you make a difference every day.” I sat in my car at the side of the road and read and re-read those words, drinking them in like a thirsty traveler who found water in the desert. Suddenly, I saw every thing I had done that day in a different light, and smiled at the reminder of why I do this work; glad to know that it is all worth it. And, I wondered how in the world the person who sent it knew exactly what I needed to hear at that moment? But, then, I knew the answer. It was the Spirit; the Spirit, who hovers over us like some brooding mother bird caring for her chicks, who knows our hearts and knows exactly what we need even before we do, and inspires others to act in ways that they could not possibly know was needed. So many times I have been going about my business, and suddenly, someone’s name pops into my head, and I think, “Hmph…I should call her.” or, “I need to go see him.” and when I do, so often the person says, “How did you know I needed that?” and I just say, “God knows.” God has given us to each other, to encourage each other, and to build each other up when the briefcase of Life starts to weigh us down. If we but listen, the Spirit will give us the words to say, and a word well said can lighten the load and make all the difference for someone whose heart is heavy. I tucked the card in the seat beside me, put the car in drive, and headed home, head held higher, and a smile on my lips, knowing that someone cares for me. Thank you, my friend, for listening to the Spirit and sending me that card. May I, some day, return the favor.

Blessings,

Pastor Barb <><

Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing.
1 Thessalonians 5:11

Celebrating 25 years of ELCA on Sept 8th

On Sept. 8th, our congregation will be joining together with the 4 million members of the ELCA in nearly 10,000 congregations to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). At Zion,  we used this opportunity to serve school children in our  country and around the world by making and filling 66 school kits. The project began when our “Quilting Angels”ministry donated materials and sewing magic to create the drawstring school bags. Baskets of colorful school bags were placed in the narthex and our members began to fill them with school supplies that are needed by children around the world to attend school. Our youngest Sunday School class brought in supplies and helped the teachers fill 8 bags. Once the bags were filled and packed in boxes, they were taken to the Lutheran World Relief truck that stopped at St. John’s Lutheran Church on Friday afternoon, August 23. The LWR truck delivered the boxes to the distribution center in Maryland. This wonderful project concludes on September 8th back at Zion. There will be pictures to show you the project as it unfolded and Pastor Barb will officially bless our servant ministry on that date. Many thanks to all
those who helped with this project; it was a huge success!!
Louise Sebastian Worship and Music Committee

141st Anniversary Celebration – Sunday September 15, 2013

anniversaryEach September, we gather with family and friends of Zion’s congregation to celebrate the blessings God has bestowed upon us. As is our tradition, we will begin our celebration with worship at 11:00 a.m. Our service will be a time to thank God for the many years of service that this church has provided to the community and beyond. It will be a time to pray and sing, hear God’s Word and share in the Lord’s Supper. After worship, we will continue the celebration in the Fellowship Hall with a buffet luncheon and a short program by Pastor Barb. Please join us for a special day of remembrance as we rejoice in the past and look forward to an exciting, grace filled future.