Sermon Audio and Video for Pentecost 19C

audioicon

Life Shaped By the Gospel – Luke 16:19-31, 1 Timothy 3:1-13, Amos 6:1-7
Pastor David Nuottila
Union Lutheran Church – Salisbury, NC

Life Changers – Luke 16:19-31
Pastor Stéphane Kalonji
Reformation Lutheran Church – New Bern, NC

Lazy Boys
Pastor Mark Ryman
Grace Lutheran Church, Advance, NC

Share on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on StumbleUponTweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someonePrint this page
Posted in Sermon Audio | Leave a comment

The Daily Lectionary – September 25, 2016

matthew6-1

Today’s readings: Esther 3:1–4:3; James 1:19–27; Matthew 6:1–6, 16–18

Max Lucado’s children’s book, You Are Special, is about a wooden person who must return to his creator to learn to avoid the labels his community awards each other. The master craftsman reassures him that he was created specially, and that only his creator’s opinion matters, after which the labels no longer stick. Too much time is spent in labeling, with far too little time spent in devoted conversation with our Master Craftsman.

Piety is personal devotion to God, something we all should exercise regularly. The issue in this reading is not pietism itself, but the intent to gain attention through acts of piety. Used as a buzzword, the term piety is often accompanied by disdain. The warning is of exhibiting one’s own righteousness with the intent of gaining attention, in which case, we receive an earthly response, or reward. When we show religiosity without true devotion, piety becomes a worn label rather than faith expressed. We are to exhibit great care in genuineness of heart, such that our Creator alone is glorified.

Prayer: Omnipotent God, forgive us when we are more concerned with how we appear than our relationship with you, and help us to understand and exercise true piety. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Tonya Brittain, Pastor of First English Lutheran Church, Marysville, OH

Original image

Tomorrow’s readings: Esther 4:4–17; Acts 18:1–11; Luke 1:1–4, 3:1–14

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 25, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 24, 2016

john12-46

Today’s readings: Esther 2:5–8, 15–23; Acts 17:16–34; John 12:44–50

Some of you may remember an old TV game show in the late 1950’s called “Queen for a Day.” A lucky contestant was picked by the audience and showered with prizes. Although it might seem “sexist” to today’s enlightened and liberated women, at the time it was very popular.

Esther was chosen queen by King Ahaseurus for her great beauty and grace; but Esther’s character was far more important than her physical beauty in securing her place in our religious history. She was loyal to the king, warning him of a plot against his life; and she was loyal to her people, the Jews, courageously standing up for them during a time of dominance by a powerful enemy.

We have a king, not just for a day, but for all eternity. By his obedience to God’s will, Jesus stood up for us against the power of sin, death, and the devil so that in him we might have new life. True royalty is not defined by external attributes but by what lives within the heart; and Christ’s humility and sacrifice make him the only king we need, and the one after whom we should try to model our lives.

Prayer: Christ, our King, give us the wisdom we need to live as royalty, not of the worldly kind but as you rule, always through humility and service motivated by love. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Marty Ramey, interim Pastor of St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, Monroe, NC. 

Original image

Tomorrow’s readings: Esther 3:1–4:3; James 1:19–27; Matthew 6:1–6, 16–18

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 24, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 23, 2016

acts17-6

Today’s readings: Esther 1:1–4, 10–19; Acts 17:1–15; John 12:36b–43

Sue Monk Kidd wrote in her book The Secret Life of Bees: “I hadn’t been out to the hives before, so to start off she gave me a lesson in what she called ‘bee yard etiquette.’ She reminded me that the world was really one bee yard, and the same rules work fine in both places. Don’t be afraid, as no life-loving bee wants to sting you. Still, don’t be an idiot; wear long sleeves and pants. Don’t swat. If you feel angry, whistle. Anger agitates while whistling melts a bee’s temper. Act like you know what you’re doing, even if you don’t. Above all, send the bees love. Every little thing wants to be loved.”*

In the lesson from Acts 17, you see crowds of people wanting to be loved. They find that love in the proclamation of the gospel as preached by Paul and Silas. Then you find another group who reject God’s love and embrace legalism and tradition. They saw these followers of Jesus as “turning the world upside down” (Acts 17:6)!

Would you commit with me to try and turn the world where we live upside down for the love of Jesus?

Prayer: Lord, help us to commit and make a difference. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Thomas W. Corbell, Pastor of  Mt. Hermon Lutheran Church in Statesville, NC.

Original image   •   *Kidd, Sue Monk (2002). The Secret Life of Bees. New York, NY: Penguin Books.

Tomorrow’s readings: Esther 2:5–8, 15–23; Acts 17:16–34; John 12:44–50

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 23, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 22, 2016

john12-36

Today’s readings: Job 28:1–28; Acts 16:25–40; John 12:27–36a

John Barrymore, star of stage and screen, spent the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and ensuing fires and panic inebriated, hiding in a tub. What would have happened if the characters in Acts 16 performed their parts in that manner?

The jailer also, was certainly afraid. Not only was he was at the epicenter of an earthquake, but he was in big trouble for letting his prisoners escape, as he supposed they had done. His heart must have been beating very quickly. Yet, there sat Silas and Paul, composed and still in their cell. Perhaps they continued praying and singing hymns until the jailer found them. This calm faith seemed to frighten the jailer even more and in response to that fear, he asked what he must do to be delivered from his predicament. Paul and Silas told him to believe in the Lord Jesus and he would be saved.

Instead of turning to drink to hide his fears, the jailer cleaned their rod-opened wounds and the Lord washed away his sin in baptism. He had been drawn to the light, and in that briefest moment when he could see, turned from evil, and became wise.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me call upon you while you are near. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Mark Ryman, Pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Advance, NC, and Communications Coordinator for the NALC.

Original image

Tomorrow’s readings: Esther 1:1–4, 10–19; Acts 17:1–15; John 12:36b–43

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 22, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 21, 2016

acts16-18

Today’s readings: Job 42:1–17; Acts 16:16–24; John 12:20–26

“Don’t go looking for trouble.” That was advice my mother gave me numerous times as I headed out the door on a Friday or Saturday night. We do not have to go looking for trouble if the world knows we are Christians. Trouble will find us. In Acts 16, Paul and Silas are going to worship, minding their business when a demon-possessed slave girl begins harassing them by announcing who they are. This goes on for days until Paul had enough and in Jesus’ name casts out the demon.

Trouble found Paul and Silas. The girl’s owners drag them before the magistrate. They are beaten and jailed. Two peaceful evangelists, who had committed no crime, are put in stocks designed to hold dangerous prisoners securely. Even so Christ is proclaimed and God is glorified.

While at present, it is unlikely that we would be beaten and jailed for our faith in America, we need to realize that persecution is possible. In Africa and the Middle-East it is reality. We need to be in prayer for those who suffer for the faith. We also need to be prepared in the event persecution happens to us so that we can, not only endure but, proclaim Christ.

Prayer: Lord God, grant us faith to live for you and be prepared for the possibility of being persecuted for Jesus’ sake; in his name we pray. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Carl Haynes, Pastor of Christiana Lutheran Church in Salisbury, NC.

Original image

Tomorrow’s readings: Job 28:1–28; Acts 16:25–40; John 12:27–36a

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 21, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 20, 2016

john12-13b Today’s readings: Job 40:1, 41:1–11; Acts 16:6–15; John 12:9–19 My dad was an insurance adjuster. One of the losses he handled involved a grocery store truck that had turned over, dumping a large load of canned goods. There were salvage men who came and took the cans that still had labels. But, the ones without labels were just given away. For a long time we had mystery meals from those unmarked cans. You never know what is inside someone’s heart. Only God knows. In the case of Lydia, God knew that her heart was ready to receive the good news about Jesus Christ. He opened her heart and inside was a hunger for the truth of the Gospel. How we feed our spiritual hunger is very important. Because when we are fed God’s living word, we are empowered to feed others. It is like having a long-handled spoon strapped to your arm. You can get the soup out of the bowl, but you cannot bring it to your mouth. Yet, if you meet someone else in the same predicament. You can feed one another. God calls us to feed one another his spiritual food! Prayer: Lord, feed me your spiritual food so that I can feed others. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Randy Conley, Pastor of Hope Lutheran Church in Hubbard Lake, MI.

Original image Tomorrow’s readings: Job 42:1–17; Acts 16:16–24; John 12:20–26
Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 20, 2016

The Daily Lectionary – September 19, 2016

acts16-5 Today’s readings: Job 40:1–24; Acts 15:36–16:5; John 11:55–12:8 Even in the Church, there are times when even the best made plans fall apart. Projects seem too daunting, volunteers are few in number, or those who took on the task were not able to rise to the occasion. Barnabas and Paul planned to revisit those churches included in their first missionary journey. But prior to leaving, they had a stark disagreement. At issue was John Mark’s abandoning them early on. When the going got tough, young John Mark retreated to his home in Jerusalem. Yet, this was not the end for Mark. As Mark grew in years and experience, he also grew in faith. At the point of our reading today, Barnabas is ready to offer him another chance. Barnabas took Mark along to Cyprus where he continued his ministry. Later, Mark would also serve extensively with Peter (1Pet 5:13). Even Paul would come to rely upon Mark as a servant of the gospel (Col. 4:10-11). Mark serves as an example for the Church today. Even in our failures, God strengthens the faithful through the power of the Holy Spirit so we may continue to share the gospel of Jesus Christ throughout the world. Prayer: Mighty God, strengthen my weaknesses and give me confidence to boldly share the truth of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by David Nuottila, Pastor of Union Lutheran Church in Salisbury, NC.

Original image Tomorrow’s readings: Job 40:1, 41:1–11; Acts 16:6–15; John 12:9–19
Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 19, 2016

Sermon Audio/Video for Pentecost 18C

audioicon

Called to serve God’s people in and through Jesus Christ. – Luke 16:1-13
Pastor Dieter Punt
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church – Troutman, NC

The Parable of the Dishonest Manager – Luke 16:1-13
Pastor David Nuottila
Union Lutheran Church – Salisbury, NC

A Sermon for the Eighteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Pastor Mark Ryman
Grace Lutheran Church, Advance, NC

A Sermon for the Eighteenth Sunday After Pentecost
Pastor Mark Ryman
Nazareth Lutheran Church, Rural Hall, NC

Worship Service for the Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Pastor Ernie Sheldon
St. John’s Lutheran Church, Statesville, NC

Share on Google+Pin on PinterestShare on StumbleUponTweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someonePrint this page
Posted in Sermon Audio | Leave a comment

The Daily Lectionary – September 18, 2016

job38-1

Today’s readings: Job 38:1, 18–41; Revelation 18:1–8; Matthew 5:21–26

I remember, as a child, watching “Father Knows Best.” Now, much older and a father myself, I hope to be a guide to my children just as Mr. Anderson was on the show. However, just like children, we all go astray. Often we forget or just do not want to recognize who is really in charge. When this happens, our entire world individually and corporately comes totally off the rails.

Job, through no fault of his own, found himself in dire straits. His friends came to comfort him, but seemed to pile on more sorrow than help. Suddenly out of the whirlwind God let Job and his friends know who is truly in charge.

Often life feels like a whirlwind hurling turmoil after trouble our way. Many times it seems as though God is a million miles away. It is at these moments that the cry of Jesus on the cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” takes on special meaning. The Father was there and he stands with each of us also at our lowest points.

Prayer: Father, come to our aid at moments of trouble, reminding us of your constant presence. Amen.

Today’s devotion was written by Carlin Ours, Pastor of Organ Lutheran Church, Salisbury, NC.

Original image

Tomorrow’s readings: Job 40:1–24; Acts 15:36–16:5; John 11:55–12:8

Posted in 2014 Devotions | Comments Off on The Daily Lectionary – September 18, 2016