Friday, August 28, 2009

Some more from "Steht auf ihr lieben Kinderlein"

V. 2, 3, 4, and 5 (there are nine)

Sei uns willkommen, schoener Stern, du bringst uns Christum, unsern Herrn, der unser lieber Heiland ist, darum du hoch zu loben bist.

Ihr Kinder sollt bei diesem Stern erkennen Christum, unsern Herrn, Marien Sohn, den treuen Hort, der uns leuchtet mit seinem Wort.

Gotts Wort, du bist der Morgenstern, wir koennen dein gar nicht entbehrn, du musst uns leuchten immerdar, sonst sitzen wir im Finster gar.

Leucht uns mit dienem Glaenzen klar und Jesusm Christum offenbar; jag aus der Finsternis Gewalt, dass nicht die Lieb in uns erkalt.


which is:

Be welcome to us, beautiful star, you bring us Christ, our Lord, who is our dear Savior; therefore you are to be highly praised.

You children shall learn the recognize Christ, our Lord, son of Mary, our faithful protector (true treasure?, an old word), who brings the light with his word.

God's Word, you are the morning star, we cannot be without you; you must always be the light, or we will sit in darkness.

Be our light with your clear shining, and reveal Jesus Christ; dispel the power of darkness, so that love will not grow cold.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Beavers



This is the only beaver we saw this week. He's gone to Vancouver to be admired and eaten. The weather is shaping up for a gorgeous weekend. My visitor is gone and I haven't practiced any organ pieces for Sunday. And it's somebody's birthday and we need another Alaska ice cream lemon cake (see recipe several posts ago.)...

Mary, are you coming over for some? Anybody else?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Cappadocian Fathers twice in 24 hrs.


Today we went to see the Ukrainian village just east of Edmonton; also, we saw the bison herd in Elk Island National Park up close.

In the Ukrainian village you can visit a Ukrainian Greek Catholic church. There were a number of interesting features to note. One was a painting of Basil the Great. I was trying to think: was he one of the Cappadocian fathers? The guide was not sure. She thought maybe there were three of them. I thought maybe there were six of them... Ignorance... According to Wikipedia the Cappadocian Fathers are three men: Basil the Great, bishop of Caesarea (330-379); Basil's brother Gregory of Nyssa (335-post 394); and a close friend Gregory Nazianzus, Patriarch of Constantinople (330-c.390). Aha. There we go.

I was a little primed for the Fathers because last night we, coincidentally, had read from Gregory Nazianzus and I was still wondering about him. This was our reading from the Treasury of Daily Prayer. I was quite impressed.

We read 2.Cor. 1:23-2:17 and to this related the Gregory Nazianzus quote. How nicely put together by those who produced the Treasury. Read it slowly and out loud.

Consider by St. Paul's example how important a matter is the care of souls... The manifold character of his ministry? Consider his loving-kindness and, on the other hand, his strictness and the combination and blending of the two in such a way that his gentleness should not weaken nor his severity exasperate... On behalf of some he gives thanks; others he upbraids. Some he names his joy and crown; others he charges with folly. Some who hold a straight course he accompanies, sharing in their zeal; others who are going wrong he checks. At one time he excommunicates; at another he confirms his love. At one time he grieves; at another rejoices. At one time he feeds with milk; at another he handles mysteries. At one time he condescends; at another he raises to his own level. At one time he threatens a rod; at another he offers the spirit of meekness. At one time he is haughty toward the lofty; at another lowly toward the lowly. Now he is least of the apostles, now he offers a proof of Christ speaking in him; now he longs for departure and is being poured forth as a libation, now he thinks it more necessary for their sakes to abide in the flesh. For he seeks not his own interests, but those of his children who he has begotten in Christ by the gospel this is the aim of all his spiritual authority, in everything to neglect his own in comparison with the advantage of others.

Very nice.

Steht auf ihr lieben Kinderlein

There is a Max Reger version of "Steht auf Ihr lieben Kinderlein" on Youtube, which does not have the original melody. The choir sings also another verse:

Sei uns willkommen, lieber Tag, vor dir die Nacht nicht bleiben mag. Leucht uns in unsre Herzen fein mit deinem himmelischen Schein.

Which is: Be welcome, dear Day, the night does not wish to remain where you are. Beam into our hearts beautifully with your heavenly light.


Monday, August 24, 2009

Interesting week

Woke up remembering a morning song. I must be in a good mood.

Steht auf, ihr lieben Kinderlein! Der Morgenstern mit hellem Schein laesst sich frei sehen wie eihn Held und leuchtet in die ganze Welt.

Get up, you little children! The morning star with his bright beam lets himself be seen freely like a hero and shines into the entire world.


Checked in the hymnbook, I only know the first verse. Can be remedied. (Erasmus Alber 1556/Nikolaus Herman) I should see if its on Youtube.

Running to the airport. I have visitor from Vancouver all week. Should be fun!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dr. Joseph Askin's article "Seeing God at Work" in FOCUS magazine of the CMDS (Christian Medical Dental Society)

With permission from Dr. Joseph Askin of Calgary and from CMDS of Canada, please find below an article reprinted from the Focus Magazine, Faith and Practice. Volume 29, Issue 2. Thank you to both Dr. Askin and CMDS.

Dr. Askin is a member of Lutheran Church Canada, as we are, and also, as the article states a "sleep consultant and certified life coach in Calgary, Alberta. He helps christian professionals discover their purpose, live more simply and grow in discipleship. He can be contacted through his website, www.pathlightcoaching.com."

Personally, I have never met Dr. Askin, but was really impressed with this article, the fine theology in it and the resources cited. Read it. Pass it on. Someone might need it. CMDS also maintains a website, but the magazine is not available there in electronic format. However, any Christian practitioners might consider becoming members of their local chapters.

There are many different stresses on different kinds of people. However, maintaining rural medical/dental practice, in our own experience, can be especially challenging. The practitioner becomes responsible for too many things and really needs to learn ways to cope in the best manner for him/herself. This can be vital for his health, his family, his continuing in the practice effectively.


Seeing God at Work

God is hiding - not from us, but in us and the people and situations around us. Our Hidden God (Deus absconditis) reveals Himself where unaided reason would not look for Him – in a manger, on a cross and serving His creation through people performing the routine activities of everyday life, so that even the most mundane task becomes a divine appointment. Jesus’ work on our behalf enables us to participate in God’s purposes, free from self-conscious concern about our status before Him. Our multiple callings as spouses, parents, physicians, dentists, parishioners and citizens are, therefore, “masks of God” by which He reveals His love and care to us and those around us. This is the heart of vocational thinking, a perspective that was re-discovered during the Reformation and that we would do well to reclaim, given the hectic pace and complexity of life in 2009. Lee et al 1 found that 69.2% of family physicians were moderately or highly stressed, which was correlated with a desire to leave practice. If you, too, are feeling disillusioned or overloaded, a vocational perspective might help you to balance your practice and personal life.

In the May 2008 issue of Canadian Family Physician, Jensen et al 2 identified four main aspects of physician resilience: attitudes and perspectives, balance and prioritization, supportive relations and practice management. A vocational perspective can give doctors and dentists a theological basis from which to address the first three of these.


Attitudes and Perspectives pertain to having a sense of contribution, maintaining interest in one’s role, accepting professional demands, and developing self awareness.2 Vocation is God’s initiative - it is not about what we do for God; after all, “God does not need our good works. But our neighbour does” (Gustav Wingren paraphrasing Luther). 3 Wonderfully, though, by serving our neighbour we bring glory to God. Our vocations are unique, based on our individual talents, personality, experience and the needs around us; they are not mysteries to be divined, but can be discerned, as much as is possible for saints who are still sinners, by prayerful reflection upon who we are and where we have been planted. We do not simply choose a vocation but are summoned to it from outside ourselves, often through the vocations of others. The fresh perspective that thinking vocationally gives can rekindle enthusiasm to be fully engaged right where we are or give us a nudge to alter course. With our peace in Christ, we are free to try new things without being paralyzed by fear of making a mistake. “…Our choices [are] themselves part of the overarching design of God” 4 but “...God makes things happen with no violation to human dignity, volition or moral responsibility…” 5

Where have you glimpsed God hiding in your life? How might you use your talents more effectively in the service of others and thereby live with greater passion and authenticity?


Balance and Prioritization involve limit setting, professional development and self care. 2 With clarity about our callings, life becomes simpler as we acknowledge our limitations, prioritize our commitments and then establish healthy boundaries to protect them. We stop trying to “do it all”. By recognizing the scope of our responsibility, we can live more intentionally, discerning which projects to accept and which ones to decline, where to allocate the resources entrusted to us and when to honour our need for rest. In Mark 6:31, Jesus, fully aware of His mission and the needs of the crowds, acknowledged that He and His disciples required rest and departed by boat for a quiet place. When we think vocationally, we are no longer burdened by trying to please everyone. There is enough time in the day to fulfill what God has called us to do, including apparent interruptions. The focus, order and margin that are created free us to face challenges with confidence and to be fully present with those to whom we are ministering. In Mark 5:21-43, we see how Jesus compassionately and unhurriedly addressed interruptions in His daily activities.
We keep weak personal boundaries to assuage guilt, feel needed or side-step conflict. Think of a recent situation when you agreed to something against your better judgment and are now feeling overwhelmed or resentful. What need were you trying to meet? What are two more-constructive ways of meeting that need? What standards will you put in place to establish a firmer boundary so you avoid similar circumstances in the future?

Supportive Relations regards professional and personal support.2 All callings are of equal importance; we are not in competition but our vocations are complementary. Since we no longer fear obscurity, we are not diminished by the achievements of others but can celebrate them. We are spared conceit when praised and self-pity when criticized. Ultimately, we can live with greater authenticity and love others more genuinely.

Who can you bring into your personal and professional spheres whose strengths offset your weaknesses? Who can replenish you emotionally and, in turn, in whom can you invest yourself? 7


Obstacles to Vocational Living 6

There are certain traps into which we can fall that impede our ability to discern and then embrace our callings:

• Making a sacred-secular distinction between vocations, leading us to idealize formal church work. We may envy others or even enter into a role that is not our own or become apologetic about our so-called secular work. Our consequent lack of joy betrays inner discord that will compromise our work with others.

• Identifying our vocation with a specific work situation can set us up for a crisis of identity and to miss opportunity for growth if our role should change or end. “The call out of one’s comfort zone is often abrupt and the last thing one would have considered.” 8

• Failing to recognize, develop and use our gifts. Our Lord expects us to be good stewards of the gifts we have been given and to invest ourselves in the extension of His Kingdom (See Mat. 25:14-30 and 2 Tim 1:6).

• Failing to realistically appreciate our limits can lead to victimization and the blaming of others for our lack of success at one extreme and, at the other extreme, the fallacy that with enough determination and hard work we can do whatever we dream of. We are not all called to do extraordinary things, but God accomplishes great things through ordinary people faithfully living out their lives. We can miss our vocation looking for the remarkable.

• Pursuing power, material security, and prestige. These temptations, faced by Jesus in the desert, are those to which we professionals are, perhaps, particularly vulnerable. We pursue these three to meet deep and legitimate needs when we fail to recognize that they can only be fulfilled in Christ. How often have people chosen a career because of its generous income and benefits? “The unchecked longing for wealth, comfort and security will inevitably threaten our capacity to know and respond fully to our vocation.” 6

• Holding a misguided sense of duty. We fail to abandon a pursuit so that we do not “waste” the time and/or money invested. In God’s economy, nothing is wasted; He brings us to certain places in our lives where we will come to desire what He desires for us in preparation for the next chapter. God will use all the seemingly disparate bits of our lives for our growth and His glory, though we may be unable to discern how He is working all things together.

We must honestly examine our motives for following a certain path and be willing to admit that they may be inconsistent with God’s true call, perhaps like Jonah fleeing his mission to Nineveh. What obstacles are keeping you from becoming all you have been called to be?

To think vocationally requires that, with God’s help, we cultivate our capacity for retrospection: the ability to review our personal stories, appreciate the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, identify our passions, strengths and weaknesses and then prayerfully apply our insights to our current life situation. In so doing, our subsequent actions can be focused and purposeful and our lives more manageable and fulfilling. It is important, though, that we acknowledge that the work we are called to do may be difficult and the progress halting and, perhaps, in an unexpected direction. Nevertheless, Christian maturity is evidenced when we are true to who we have been called to be despite the difficulties, our initial insecurities and the expectations of others because we trust God with the outcome. Delight in this: we are the hands and feet of our Hidden God, manifestations of His love toward a world in need! Open our eyes, Lord, to see You at work.



References

1. Lee FJ, Stewart M, Brown JB. Stress, burnout and strategies for reducing them. What’s the situation among Canadian family physicians? Can Fam Physician 2008; 54: 234-5.e1-5.
2. Jensen PM, Trollope-Kumar K, Walters H, Everson J. Building physician resilience. Can Fam Physician 2008; 54: 722-9.
3. Wingren, G quoted. In: Veith, Gene Edward. God at Work. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books; 2002. p. 38.
4. Veith, Gene Edward. God at Work. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books; 2002. p. 54.
5. Ensor, John. Two inches of providence stretches into a lifelong smile. Worldmag.com Commentary, May 19, 2009.
6. Smith, Gordon T. Courage and Calling - Embracing Your God-Given Potential. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press; 1999, p. 99-111.
7. Elmore, Tim. Habitudes #1 – The Art of Self-Leadership. Atlanta, GA: Growing Leaders, Inc; 2004, p. 33-36.
8. Menuge, Angus. Christian Vocation. Saint Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House; 2006; p. 28.


Friday, August 21, 2009

LCC's statement on ELCA's vote

A statement from Lutheran Church–Canada

Ordination of Homosexuals in the Lutheran Church



AUGUST 21, 2009 - In Minneapolis this afternoon, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America adopted a resolution to allow for the ordination of those in committed, monogamous, same-sex relationships. The vote was 559 in favour, 451 against. The following statement was prepared at the request of President Robert Bugbee of Lutheran Church–Canada by Dr. Edward Kettner, professor at Concordia Lutheran Seminary, Edmonton.

As the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) at its current convention has approved the ordination of people in “committed same-sex relationships,” it needs to be noted that the ELCA does not represent all Lutherans in the United States or North America. In its actions the ELCA is going against, not just the history of the Christian Church and against the practices of the covenant religion of Israel as expressed in the Old Testament (First Testament), but against the Bible, which the Christian Church has always recognized as the very Word of God itself. The traditional Christian understanding continues to be held by The Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS) in the United States and by Lutheran Church–Canada (LCC) in Canada, as well as by a number of smaller conservative bodies in both countries.

Background

For more than two hundred years much of Christendom has come to reject the previously universal recognition of the Bible as the Word of God written. By using methods of scriptural interpretation which see the Bible as a human book, a record of human response to the idea of God, rather than as God’s declaration of Himself, His nature, and His activities to the world, parts of the church on earth now look at Scripture with what is called a “hermeneutic [biblical interpretation] of suspicion” rather than the traditional hermeneutic of trust.

Under this new method of interpretation, words which previously were seen as the authoritative Word of God revealed through His apostles and prophets are now viewed as words composed by men seeking to maintain their power over others. In this understanding, the words of Scripture regarding marriage, which declare it to be the union of man and woman, and ideally one man and one woman in a lifelong union, are replaced by a preference for talking about “intimacy,” and commitment between two people that may not always include marriage in the traditional sense, or even, in recent years, a relationship between a male and a female.

Behind this change lurks an understanding of “freedom” which is in fact license, which flies against God’s clear word in Genesis 1 and 2 and restated by Christ in Matthew 19:3-6. Since a pastor is one who is to have a good reputation among Christians and before the world, for the church to ordain people who clearly flout the Word of God in their actions throws both the Word of God and the office of the Holy Ministry into contempt, and gives the rest of the world an excuse to continue in its sin.

LCC and Homosexuality

Lutheran Church–Canada desires to reach out with the Gospel to everyone, including the homosexual, to provide real healing of the person, so that their lives may begin to reflect the holiness God desires of all of His people. Those who may have such inclinations and who struggle against them are welcome in our churches, will receive forgiveness of their sins, and may serve in the office of ministry. Those who flout the clear Word of God, refuse to call sin what it is, and who seek to justify their behaviour, disqualify themselves from the office and indeed put their eternal salvation in jeopardy.

We recognize that our view is decidedly counter-cultural, but we know that we must continue to maintain the clear teaching of the Scriptures. We regret the decision of the ELCA, which, even by its own admission in its resolutions at this convention, goes against everything the Scriptures clearly teach and which the church has confirmed over the last 2000 years and even before.


More information:
Ian Adnams
Director of Communications
Lutheran Church–Canada
communications@lutheranchurch.ca
204-895-3433 ext 2224


From Cyberbrethern I also got this link on a "Plan for Ministry to Homosexuals and their Families". It seems like an excellent document.

VBS is finished

We had a good week. Thanks be to God and all the team. The guys also got the garage/storage building's roof done during this time. Apparently, the roof was shingled over 6 times without anyone removing the old shingles before putting on new ones. This time it was done properly.

Everyone was happy and the children attended faithfully throughout the week. Everyone helped everyone.

At the picnic I talked with a mom of quite a few children, just moved into town, who is ready to join a church after having talked lots with a neighbor in her previous town. None of the children have been baptized, and they seem to want that and the husband is willing to go to church, he is just worried about being a trucker and wearing jeans. We told her to let us know when he's coming and we'll all wear jeans. She also took a catechism. Talked to the other moms of many children (big families). Several belong to the Moravian church (note the name of the town: "Bruderheim".)

Went home and put on "chilling with Bach", put my stuff away and collapsed on the sofa. Woke up to something nice playing. Now, to go exercise, still? Better go. My back is stiff.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Harry Hill on the "Tree of Life"



A nice spoof.

Thomas poking



One precocious little girl was very intrigued by this picture. I think she would have liked to do the same.

It makes me think about how we are body and soul together. It makes me think about how Jesus helped out Thomas. There will not be this ethereal floating soul in neverland, but a body at home. It is beyond comprehension, though we know something like it now. The mystery of life is that biology and spirit are fused into one. The materialist is wrong and the soul only people are wrong. It has been proved. But you need a real God for that. (Quod erat demonstrandum)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Resurrection from the dead


Tomorrow, I am supposed to teach about Christ's resurrection from the dead. We did not buy any VBS material. Our outline is the Apostles Creed. We started with Creation, the Fall, the Promises, the Incarnation... We are putting together a nice album that has a good portion of the catechism in it, along with the other crafts. Tomorrow Marilyn will talk about Christ's death and I about the resurrection. Many children don't know half of this, others know everything inside out. We have them all in one group, this year.

I think I am going to be crying, but now that I think about it ahead of time, maybe I won't. We will start with Job and move on to John 20. Then I think we will act out Thomas' story. I think somewhere along the line we will end up talking about all the people we've lost and we will let them run with this, and I think we will sit on the floor for all of it and keep the Kleenex box not too far off.

I think Job is the most amazing book. How did he get this: "Oh, that my words were recorded, that they were written on a scroll, that they were inscribed with an iron tool on lead or engraved in rock forever! (what irony) I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes--I, and not another. How my heart yearns withing me!" (19) Boy, wouldn't it be nice to know even more about Old Testament believers. Anyways, Job knew the same God. We had that the other day with Noah. I like, too, that Job was yearning for this redeemer himself not just his redemption. Certainly, trouble helps you focus on both.

(Now, I better clean up more, we are having house guest tonight for Concordia College... Fancy dinner tomorrow. What to wear? In terms of being pastor-less just now, Martin just figured that we have 4 vacancies in the district of 7 congregations.)

Monday, August 17, 2009

"Through Faith Alone".

We are having a pastor-less VBS, this year (well nearly. Pastor Kihn was able to help out for two hours, today). We teachers and helpers have been having our own devotions from this book. "Through Faith Alone" is a wonderful compilation of Luther quotes on short Bible passages. Lots of punch for each one page devotion. Love it. Have been passing it around.

Paul Gerhardt song on marriage in German as per request.



Sorry, I'm not good at fixing Umlauts and such at the very moment. See the English filed under Paul Gerhardt.

Der wundervolle Ehestand.

Voller Wunder, voller Kunst,
Voller Weisheit, voller Kraft,
Voller Huld, Gnad und Gunst,
Voller Labsal, Trost und Saft,
Voller Wunder, sag ich noch,
Ist der keuschen Liebe Joch.

Die sich nach dem Angesicht
Niemals hiebevor gekannt,
Auch sonst im geringsten nicht
Mit Gedanken zugewandt,
Deren Herzen, derer Hand
Knuepft Gott in ein Liebesband.

Dieser Vater zeucht sein Kind,
Jener seins dagegen auf;
Beide treibt ihr sonder Wind
Ihre sondre Bahn und Lauf;
Aber wenn die Zeit nun dar,
Wirds ein wohlgeratnes Paar.

Hier waechst ein geschickter Sohn,
dort ein edle Tochter zu;
Eines ist des andern Kron,
Eines ist des andern Ruh,
Eines ist des andern Licht,
Wissens aber beide nicht;

Bis so lang es dem beliebt,
Der die Welt im Schosse Haelt
Auch zur rechten Stude gibt
Jedem, was ihm wohlgefaellt;
Da erscheint im Werk und Tat
Der so tief verborgne Rat.

Da waehlt Ahasverus Blick
Ihm die stille Esther aus;
Den Tobias fuehrt das Glueck
In der frommen Sara Haus;
Davids bald gewandter Will
Holt die kluge Abigail.

Jakob fleucht fuer Esaus Schwert
Und trifft seine Rahel an;
Joseph dient auf fremder Erd
Und wird Asnath Herr und Mann;
Mose spricht bei Jethro ein,
Da wird die Zipora sein,

Jeder finder, jeder nimmt
Was der Hoechst ihm ausersehn;
Was im Himmel ist bestimmt,
Pflegt auf Erden zu geschehn,
Und was denn nun so geschicht,
Das ist sehr wohl ausgericht.

Oefters denkt man, dies und dies,
Haette koennen besser sein;
Aber wie die Finsternis
Nicht erreicht der Sonnen Schein,
Also geht auch Menschensinn
Hinter Gottes Weisheit hin.

Lass zusammen was Gott fuegt;
Der weiss, wies am besten sei;
Unser Denken fehlt und triegt, (truegt)
Sein Gedank ist Mangel frei.
Gottes Werk hat festen Fuss,
Wann sonst alles fallen muss.

Siehe frommen Kindern zu,
Die im heilgen Stande stehn,
Wie so wohl Gott ihnen tu,
Wie so schoen Er lasse gehn
Alle Taten ihrer Haend
Auf ein gutes, selges End.

Ihrer Tugend werter Ruhm
Steht in steter voller Bluet,
Wann sonst aller Liebe Blum
Als ein Schatten sich verzieht;
Und wenn aufhort alle Treu,
Ist doch ihre Treue neu.

Ihre Lieb ist immer frisch
Und verjuengt sich fort und fort;
Liebe zieret ihren Tisch
Und verzuckert alle Wort;
Liebe gibt dem Herzen Rast
In der Mueh- und Sorgenlast.

Gehts nicht allzeit, wie es soll,
Ist doch diese Liebe still,
Haelt sich in dem Kreuze wohl,
Denkt, es sie des Herren Will,
Und versichert sich mit Freud
Einer kuenftig bessern Zeit.

Unterdessen geht und fleusst
Gottes reicher Segenbach,
Speist die leiber, traenkt den Geist,
Staerkt des Hauses Grund und Dach,
Und was klein, gering und bloss,
Macht Er maechtig, viel und gross.

Endlich wenn nun ganz vollbracht
Was Gott hier in dieser Welt
Frommen Kindern zugedacht,
Nimmt Er sie ins Himmelszelt
Und drueckt sie mit grosser Lust
Selbst an seinen Mund und Brust.

Nun so bleibt ja voller Gunst,
Voller Labsal, Trost und Saft,
Voller Wunder, voller Kunst,
Voller Weisheit, voller Kraft,
Voller Wunder, sag ich noch,
Bleibt der keuschen Liebe Joch.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

"Hope"

The other day I copied this from Elephant's Child's blog and put it on my fridge where it has me done good service. I think one could almost say it is "the hope that we confess in a nutshell", through Christ our Lord, of course.

C.F.W. Walther, God Grant It! p. 93.

Know that whatever the path on which God will lead you--up the mountain or down the valley, through flowers or over thorns, on rocky terrain or on level ground, through darkness or through light, for a long time or a short time--that path leads through the kingdom of grace, and its end is salvation.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Alaska Ice Cream Lemon Pie Recipe

For Sarah E. (Remember we have a deal!)

Alaska Ice Cream Lemon Pie:

This is a favorite at our house for all summer birthdays, of which we had one this week. I got it originally from my step-mother Gisela, who is a very famous cook/baker. Anyone from Germany wanting to try this—one cup is equivalent to about 250 ml.


Crust:

1 cup coarse pecans chopped
¼ cup butter
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup flour

bake in a springform at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (200 Celsius) for about 10 min.


Ice Cream Center:

soften some vanilla ice cream a little and add on top of cooled pecan bottom layer, freeze.

Lemon top:

In double boiler (or just lower heat and stirring) cook all the below ingredients until thick and bubbly.

½ cup butter
1 cup sugar
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ cup lemon rind
3 large eggs, plus 4 egg yolks, beaten with a fork.

-cool down mixture, put on top of vanilla ice cream layer in spring from. Freeze for several hours. To serve, remove springform.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Getting ready for VBS, 2

video

Progress in one day! Eh! i Pod already going with manually loaded Playlist. This going to be convenient.

Free advertisement for CPH. If you like the children singing the Small Catechism get the "Sing the Faith" CD and/or songbook. Sample below.

video

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

One of Simon's winning climbs

video

Posted with permission.
My sister's son, Simon Y. of Canmore, Alberta, is the reigning national champion in sports climbing in the under-12-year-old category, I am very proud to report as doting auntie/godmother. The family is quite humble about the accomplishment, saying that the age category is only sparsely populated with young climbers. The next level will present a completely different competitive field. None the less, congratulations to Simon! What a gift to be so strong and determined and to have fun while you're at it!

Canmore in Summer



Sarah and Simon along Cougar creek. The haze over the mountains was said to be from B.C. forest fires, which are particularly savage again, this year.

"iPod in the head"

I'm back and I bought my first iPod, in Red Deer at Costco. It is PURPLE!!!

In Red Deer I also bought some more children's music at the big Parable's Christian Market place. They, of course, carry no nice Lutheran materials. I checked at the counter regarding their stock and made a few recommendations to them, which probably did not help much in getting them to stock those items.

Nonetheless, some of the songs are really nice and they will all go onto the iPod for VBS, which is next week. Do you think I can learn to use the thing by then? (Found a manual here.)

At church in Canmore, I was a crying mess this Sunday. First of all it is hard for me to be with the children's cousins, as the memories are too poignant. Second of all the sermon was all about God's will and car accidents and stuff like that. Then I talked with the organist who just lost a 16-year old grandson, apparently to suicide. What is the matter with this world? Between accidents, suicides and extreme sports, not to mention drugs and other things, we are losing so many. We don't even have a war (except in Afghanistan, where our professional army is fighting, indeed). Lord, help us.

Anyhow, I was talking with the organist and we talked about iPods and she said she knew so many songs by heart she has an "iPod in the head". I thought that was really good. I have a bit of one, too. Maybe a couple of gigabytes worth. It is a blessing. Sometimes it is a shuffle. You don't know what it will play next. Sometimes something really great just pops out of it. Something from long ago, even. But maybe the iPod in the pocket can help shape the iPod in the head. I am going to work at getting really neat stuff onto it. Stuff you want to really sing about, memorize, or learn from.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

"To Live with Christ" by Bo Giertz, on sale at CPH.

Did you know that the Bo Giertz devotional is finally on sale right now!!!
"To Live with Christ" is available at CPH for $8.00.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Sunday song, seven months

Everyone was gone on holidays this weekend, except we weren't. I went to church with a friend to Bethel. There are reasons for this. Martin went to Bruderheim.

Even though the service was sparsely attended due to national holiday, the band at Bethel was ambitious. They tried this song. I have seen this song on a couple of blogs and people say they would like this at their own funerals.

My parents used to sing a little song to each other: "Und wenn ich einmal tot bin, sollst du denken an mich, und abends eh du einschlaefst, aber weinen sollst du nicht." (And when I am dead some day, you shall think of me, and in the evening before you fall asleep,-- but you shall not cry.)

Yes, but we do cry, but not all the time. And we do want to be brave because our Lord lives and he knows our names and he will raise us.



When I go, don't cry for me
In my Father's arms I'll be
The wounds this world left on my soul
Will all be healed and I'll be whole.
Sun and moon will be replaced
With the light of Jesus' face
And I will not be ashamed
For my Savior knows my name.

It don't matter where you bury me,
I'll be home and I'll be free.
It don't matter where I lay,
All my tears be washed away.

Gold and silver blind the eye
Temporary riches lie
Come and eat from heaven's store,
Come and drink, and thirst no more

It don't matter where you bury me
I'll be home and I'll be free
It don't matter where I lay
All my tears be washed away

So, weep not for me my friends,
When my time below does end
For my life belongs to Him
Who will raise the dead again.

It don't matter where you bury me,
I'll be home and I'll be free.
It don't matter where I lay,
All my tears be washed away.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Marilynn and Henry/ President Bugbee

Marilynn and Henry are like parents to Martin and me. We are their "adopted children", of which they have many.

Marilynn and I were looking through the Canadian Lutheran. She wanted me to read the article on "Rights". What I want to highlight, however, is what President Bugbee published on page 12.

I'll type it off quickly.

A message from President Robert Bugbee.

The holy writer sang, "In Your light we see light" (Psalm 36:9). It's a fancy way of saying that the Lord alone can show you what light really is. Only He can teach the difference between light and darkness, between crooked and straight, between abundant life and self-destruction. The psalmist also proclaims, "Your Word is a lamp to my feet, and a light for my path" (119:105)

In His Word God not only gives information about His light. He brings it to where you are and plants it into your life! Then you see Him in His glory and you see yourself for what you are! Then you can have guidance--and the fuel--to move forward in a world that seems more bewildering by the day.

As we move toward the end of all things, our congregations and families will need men and women immersed in God's Word; people who will invest blocks of time in it. I call on all of you to revive and practice the discipline of substantial and daily Bible reading.

I ask all our pastors to invest solid, prayerful time in the Word so that it forms the backbone and the depth of your preaching and teaching.

We also need to help our congregations become more and more nurturing places. Enter into other people's lives. Take an interest in them. Listen to them. It's one of the fruits that can grow when we are immersed in God's Holy Word. He starts shaping in us the mind of Christ. Then we begin functioning like a body. We become more of a family all the time...


He is making four points: God's Word is the light we need. Families need to make time for Bible reading. Pastors need to invest in Bible study. We need to become more like family.

Over the weekend, I've been thinking a little bit about what it means to really glean things from Bible study and what it means to be confessional. These things are not in opposition. But I think in general we have become quite lazy about both. It is really disgraceful, when we think about it. We are drowning in inane entertainment and have no time left over for study.

Martin and I have been thrown into Bible reading. Since Stefan's death we have had not much appetite for movies, TV, newspapers. We are getting back to some of that. Not much. We've given up the 10:00 pm news. It's really enough to read the newspaper, spend time on the internet; we don't need it all rehashed one more time. Usually, the stories are not the ones we are interested in, anyways. So after 10:00 we generally have our readings. Readers of this blog know that it is the Treasury of Daily Prayer, that we've been using. I squeeze in Bror's Giertz devotional, here and there. It is all excellent reading. There are so many old and new resources available. The Treasury also tries to get you to read the Confessions, by giving suggested readings along with the excerpts in the "Writings" section. The new book of Lutheran Confessions from CPH is also very beautiful, readable and reasonably priced. Get one. (I have got a few, if that's easier.)

I wonder, too, if many pastors could do better with their own scripture study. For example, I wonder if there are any Canadian Lutheran pastor's blogs or webpages, that deal with scripture, theology, or liturgy... I have not come across any, nor searched. Maybe somebody knows of them. Please, let me know. I would be very curious.

The last admonition has to do with becoming family. Well, many of us are like family and it is a tremendously beautiful thing to be very grateful for. Yet, when I first joined LCMS (at the time), from an independent Lutheran congregation in Edmonton, one of my first impressions was: "These people are not each other's friends." Maybe, that was just a misconception. But I don't think that was entirely it. I think we can be more friend-ly. Think very hard about how you can include other people in your plans, in your meals, in your leisure, hey, maybe--even your devotions! Our children, growing up in this moral morass of a culture, especially need our families to be friends to each other.

(Thank you, Rev. Bugbee!)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

i-monk's post on Lutheranism

We've all seen this: http://www.internetmonk.com/archive/looking-for-luther#respond
Also check under "older" comments.

So much good stuff, there. So many great reads recommended. So many good comments.

I went to the link of Forde's book "Theology is for Proclamation." and read all that was there (some parts missing).