October 27, 2018

Whenever you leave one place for another you always take something with you.  In some way October 31st will always remind me of the Reformation and I will always travel back in my mind to singing "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" at my childhood congregation in southeast Missouri.  We take something with us from every place we've been. It will forever be my Grandpa's church where, along with my grandmother, they sat on the left in the second row from the front. The same place I sit with my wife and 6 kids now.

When I was in college and seminary a popular phrase in the circles I ran in was "still attending Grandpa's church". That resonated with me because I wanted the Lutheran church of my fathers. 

In my studies I would go on to learn just how much the Lutheranism that I considered to be normal was a departure from what my ancestor Fritz had known in Germany and then when he came to America in 1865.  He traveled here in part for religious liberty. 

He didn't care for the "rati...

October 23, 2018

It exploded everywhere!

We were finally getting back to a more regular, less scattered routine of family prayers. It was our evening prayer, which includes asking each person in the family to forgive the other person for anything wrong we might have done that day.  Pretty important part of the day in our family.  We're getting the family altar set up, which includes lighting the charcoal for the incense. 

Sometimes they pop a little bit, but tonight, after a great struggle to get to this point, the whole piece exploded.  Amelia went to retrieve a piece of red hot charcoal that had fallen behind the altar.  In the process she burned her hand on another piece that was embedded in the carpet.

As she was quickly trying to remove the rest so they didn't melt into the carpet (which was unsuccessful...) Evangelia walked over and found another piece with her foot.  They were everywhere.  After many tears and as we struggled to keep Kyriaki present as her tired little self wilt...

October 5, 2018

Everyone knows that a newborn baby needs mom.  When a baby is born the first thing they need from mom is nourishment. They need to nurse.  If you walked into the room and put a chunk of steak in little Peter's mouth he'd choke on it because he isn't ready. 

So the reasoning goes for some people who deny the Eucharist to newly baptized infants. The Lord's Supper is clearly solid food that is only meant for those who know their catechism by heart, can reflect on what they believe, and can explain it to their pastor.

On the surface it might make some logical sense, but it simply is not consistent with what Scripture teaches.  The Apostle Paul actually teaches that the Lord's Supper is part of the milk that nourishes infants in Christ.  Don't believe me?  Check this out.

"But I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now you are...

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