Pastor's Update

  Pastor's Update  
Each month, our pastor writes a personal message of encouragement for the members of Christ Lutheran.

Pastor's updates generally correspond to his updates in the monthly congregational newsletter, The Messenger

Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Merrill, WI - WELS
September 2018

"Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path."  (NIV® 84)
- Psalm 119:105

"And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts."  (NIV® 84)

2 Peter 2:19

Have you had that scary feeling before?  You find yourself in a dark room where you can hardly see anything, and you have to try to find your way out, so you can make it to the kitchen or the bathroom or back into bed.  You don’t know if you are going to run into a table or step onto one of the toys the kids left on the floor.  If you aren’t careful, you could get hurt really badly, but think about how different it is if someone simply turns the light switch on or perhaps if you just even had a flashlight in your hand to light up the path before you.  All of a sudden you can see those potential dangers.  You know exactly the way to go so that you won’t run into something or step on something that could make you fall.  

God’s word is like a light to us.  Our sinful heart has the ability to cloud our sense of right and wrong.  This world can often make it seem like what is bad and evil in God’s eyes is actually good and right.  We can find ourselves in the darkness when it comes to knowing what God says is right and wrong, but when we turn to God’s word, it’s like a light has been switched on and everything becomes clear.  It shows us exactly what God says is right and wrong.  

When it comes to salvation, by nature, we are all in the darkness.  Our sinful nature makes us inclined to think we can earn it on our own, when in reality we are sinners by nature, who could never truly earn anything from God.  If it were up to us, our dark hearts would lead us down a path of self-righteousness or despair that would lead to our destruction.  But God’s word is like a light showing us the true path of salvation, showing us that Jesus is our Savior, that eternal life is God’s free gift to us in him, that we receive and enjoy it only through faith.  

Think about how important it is to use the light that God has given us, to be in it, to trust it, to let it guide our lives.  Our sinful nature is constantly telling us the wrong way of salvation. Without the light of God’s word in our lives, we are in great danger of changing our trust for salvation from being in Jesus to being in ourselves.  But we know that God works through his word to preserve us and strengthen us in faith.  As Christians who believe in Jesus and have his salvation, we want to thank him by living lives that are pleasing to him, but without the light of God’s word, we might come to the wrong conclusion about how to do that.  We have every reason to be in God’s word often.  Let’s take advantage of the opportunities we have: the sermons that are preached on a weekly basis in our church services, the Sunday school and Bible study classes that are about to start this fall, the chances we have to read God’s word at home, the online and printed devotions that are available to us.  God will use them to preserve and strengthen us in faith, to keep us trusting in Jesus and thereby on the true path of salvation, and to guide us in our faith-born effort to thank him by serving him with our lives.
Your brother in Christ,
Pastor Andy DeGier
Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Merrill, WI - WELS

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