Sunday, May 27, 2018

The Daily Readings for SUNDAY, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday


The Daily Readings
SUNDAY, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday
(Revised Common Lectionary Year B)

Opening Sentence
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.

Prayer of the Day (Collect)
Almighty and everlasting God, you have given to us your servants grace, by the confession of a true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory, O Father; who with the Son and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, for everand ever. Amen.

Confession and Forgiveness
Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.

God is light and in him there is no darkness at all.  If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true;  but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

Almighty and most merciful Father, we have erred and strayed from Your ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against Your holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is nothing good in us. O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare those, O God, who confess their faults. Restore those who are penitent; according to Your promises declared unto men in Christ Jesus our Lord. Grant that we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life; to the glory of His name. Amen.


The Lessons

Old Testament
Isaiah 6:1-8
A Vision of God in the Temple
6:1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. 2 Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. 3 And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.” 4 The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called, and the house filled with smoke. 5 And I said: “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!” 6 Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. 7 The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: “Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.” 8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I; send me!”

The Response
Psalm 29 Afferte Domino
1   Ascribe to the LORD, you gods,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.
2   Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his Name;
worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
3   The voice of the LORD is upon the waters; the God of glory thunders;
the LORD is upon the mighty waters.
4   The voice of the LORD is a powerful voice;
the voice of the LORD is a voice of splendor.
5   The voice of the LORD breaks the cedar trees;
the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon;
6   He makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
and Mount Hermon like a young wild ox.
7   The voice of the LORD splits the flames of fire; the voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness;
the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
8   The voice of the LORD makes the oak trees writhe
and strips the forests bare.
9   And in the temple of the LORD
all are crying, "Glory!"
10   The LORD sits enthroned above the flood;
the LORD sits enthroned as King for evermore.
11   The LORD shall give strength to his people;
the LORD shall give his people the blessing of peace.

The Epistle
Romans 8:12-17
8:12 So then, brothers and sisters, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh— 13 for if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. 15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ—if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

The Gospel
John 3:1-17
Nicodemus Visits Jesus
3:1 Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. 2 He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” 3 Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” 4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. 6 What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ 8 The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” 9 Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” 10 Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? 11 “Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. 12 If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? 13 No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. 17 “Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.


Here ends the Lessons

Click HERE to read today's Holy Gospel Lesson message

The Apostle's Creed
We believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

We believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

Benediction
I  pray that I may be blessed every step of my path this day, and in the week to come, by the great God of light. May your sun shine upon me; as the moon moves the tide, may your Spirit move my emotions with every grace and magic; may my heart sing with the voice of your angels and my hearth be warm; and may this and every blessed day You have given me be filled with joy. Amen.

Blessing
The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission.

"The Wind" The Sermon for SUNDAY, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday


"The Wind"
by Rev. Tim Zingale
St.Olaf Lutheran Church
Fort Dodge, Iowa

3:1 ¶ Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. 2 He came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God; for no one can do these signs that you do apart from the presence of God.” 3 Jesus answered him, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above.” 4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can anyone be born after having grown old? Can one enter a second time into the mother’s womb and be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Very truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and Spirit. 6 What is born of the flesh is flesh, and what is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not be astonished that I said to you, ‘You must be born from above.’ 8 The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” 9 Nicodemus said to him, “How can these things be?” 10 Jesus answered him, “Are you a teacher of Israel, and yet you do not understand these things? 11 “Very truly, I tell you, we speak of what we know and testify to what we have seen; yet you do not receive our testimony. 12 If I have told you about earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you about heavenly things? 13 No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. 14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in him may have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life. 17 “Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.

Grace and Peace to you from our Lord and Saviour, Jesus who is the Christ. Amen.

Wind, wind, wind, it is something we feel, something we cannot see, but we can see the affects of it as it blows the trees, as we feel it blow our hair around, as it blows on a hot summer’s day giving us some relief from the heat.

I read a story from the Best Seller books of Reader’s Digest entitled, The Courtship of Peggy McCoy and it deals with wind. Let me explain.

Peggy is a retired navy nurse and lives on the coast of Maine. Her hobby, her obsession is sailing. Each day she takes her sailboat out for a sail. She loves it. She has learned how to read the wind, how to make her boat go so that it catches the wind just right. As I read about her sailing experiences, you could almost feel the wind coming out of the pages of the book as she sometimes fought with it, as she allowed it to catch her sails and take her out onto the water.

Jesus speaks about wind in our gospel lesson this morning.

He says, "The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit."

Jesus is describing the wind and using it to help Nicodemus understand the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is like the wind, we cannot see it, we don’t know where it goes, we cannot even explain how it works, but we know it is there. In the same way, the Holy spirit is there in our lives, we cannot see it, we don’t know where it goes, and we cannot even explain how it works, but it is there, period.

When we were Baptized, we received the Holy Spirit. When you were Baptized, the pastor said," I baptize you in the name of the Father, and the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. "

And then later on in the service, the pastor says "the child’s name, "child of God you have been sealed by the Holy Spirit and marked with the cross of Christ forever", and while saying these words the pastor makes the sign of the cross on the baby’s forehead.

At that point, we are filled with the Holy Spirit, and we have the rest of our lives to live in that Spirit and allow it to do it's works.

Being born of the Spirit is not an act which we accomplish, but it is an act that God does on our behalf.

"Being born from above is not something we do. We are not the "actors". It is something done to us (by God). In a similar way, being born the first time was not something we did. Our physical births were caused by powers far beyond our infantile abilities and understanding. Being born is something that happens to us from powers outside of ourselves."

And then the fun part of being in Spirit is that the rest of our lives we will learn about the Spirit and how it has formed our lives. It is like the wind, we don’t know where it goes, we don’t know how it does it’s thing, but it does. The Spirit will lead us in the same way.

It is like the test in the following:

The president of a bank was talking to his old economics professor at an alumni reunion. The professor said, "Here’s something that might interest you--this year’s final exam."

The bank president scanned the exam, then said, "I could swear these are the same questions you asked my class 20 years ago."

"They are," said the professor. "I know the students pass the exams down from year to year."

"Then doesn’t everyone get an A on every exam?" asked the bank president.

"Not at all," said the professor. "In economics, the questions stay the same, year after year--but we keep changing the answers."

Jesus does the same thing, kinda, in today’s gospel. He promises to send us the Holy Spirit, who contains all truth. But it is the circumstances of our daily life that change. And the Spirit helps us apply truth to the circumstances of our daily life.

Our lives, our faith are not stagnate, but changing and evolving each day. So the work of the Spirit helps us in mysterious ways to keep the truths of Jesus alive in our lives each day.

We can either be like the big oak tree in the following or we can live by the Spirit and be like the Reeds
"A very large oak was uprooted by the wind and thrown across a stream. It fell among some Reeds, which it thus addressed: "I wonder how you, who are so light and weak, are not entirely crushed by these strong winds."

They replied, "You fight and contend with the wind, and consequently you are destroyed; while we on the contrary bend before the least breath of air, and therefore remain unbroken, and escape."
We can give in to the power of the Spirit in our lives and bend with the "wind of it" as it leads us, or we can resist and break and become our own guide.

Jesus tells us that the Spirit will lead us in truth if we let it. And we must resist trying to figure out where the Spirit will lead, how it will lead, we must just let it.

It is like that Peggy at the beginning of our sermon. She turned the tiller of her sail boat to catch the wind and then rode with it. We must allow ourselves to be the tiller and go with the wind of the Holy Spirit. Let it guide us, nurture, lead us in God’s truth and then we will have a rich and full life.

Can we be like the monk in this closing story who trusted God to provide.

"I need oil," said an ancient monk; so he planted an olive sapling.

"Lord," he prayed, "it needs rain that its tender roots may drink and swell. Send gentle showers." And the Lord sent gentle showers.

"Lord," prayed the monk, "my tree needs sun. Send sun, I pray Thee."

And the sun shone, gilding the dripping clouds. "Now frost, my Lord, to brace its tissues," cried the monk. And behold, the little tree stood sparkling with frost, but at evening it died.

Then the monk sought the cell of a brother monk, and told his strange experience. "I, too, planted a little tree," he said, "and see! It thrives well. But I entrust my tree to its God. He who made it knows better what it needs than a man like me."

"I laid no condition. I fixed not ways or means. ’Lord, send what it needs,’ I prayed, ’storm or sunshine, wind, rain, or frost. Thou hast made it and Thou dost know.’"[1]

Can we be like that monk and pray, "Lord send what I need, allow the Spirit to guide me for Thou hast made me and Thou dost know what I need."

Jesus said, "The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit."

Let us pray: Breathe into us, Holy Spirit, that our thoughts may all be holy. Move in us, Holy Spirit, that our work, too, may be holy. Attract our heart, Holy Spirit, that we may love only what is holy. Strengthen us, Holy Spirit, that we may defend all that is holy. Protect us, Holy Spirit, that we may always be holy. Amen.

Seeking God?
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relationship with Jesus Christ

1 Anonymous via Cracker Barrel Journal

The Bible texts of the Old Testament, Epistle and Gospel lessons are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA, and used by permission. Sermon written by Pastor Tim Zingale on June 9, 2003.
Jesus said, "The wind blows where it wills, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know whence it comes or whither it goes; so it is with every one who is born of the Spirit."

The Morning Prayer for SUNDAY, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday


Almighty and everlasting God, you have given to us your servants grace, by the confession of a true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory, O Father; who with the Son and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, for ever and ever.
Amen

Verse of the Day for SUNDAY, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday


John 3:5 (NIV) Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit.

Read all of John 3

Listen to John 3

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Un dia a la Vez - Semana de celebración: El nuevo día


Semana de celebración: El nuevo día

¡Despierta, alma mía! ¡Despierten, arpa y lira! ¡Haré despertar al nuevo día!
~ Salmo 57:8 (NVI)

Sé que después de esta semana de celebración tú y yo tendremos un corazón muy agradecido por Dios. Seremos capaces de recordar todo lo grande que es nuestro Padre y todo lo hermoso que es Él.

Hoy celebramos que tenemos un día más de vida, que a Dios le plació que nos levantáramos, que respiráramos, que hoy es una nueva oportunidad para reparar lo que se dañó, que hoy, como te lo he dicho otras veces, la misericordia de Dios es nueva. Celebramos que hoy puede ser el día en que alcancemos esos sueños o lleguemos por fin a la meta tan esperada.

Hoy es un nuevo día en el que nuestro Señor tiene preparada cosas hermosas. Recuerda que Él siempre quiere lo mejor para nosotros.

Ánimo, levántate con la expectativa de dejarte sorprender hoy por Dios.

Un Día a la Vez Copyright © by Claudia Pinzón
Sé que después de esta semana de celebración tú y yo tendremos un corazón muy agradecido por Dios.

Standing Strong Through the Storm - COURAGE FROM JESUS


COURAGE FROM JESUS

I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
~ John 15:5 (NIV)

Yesterday we read the testimony of Kefa Sampangi in Uganda when he was threatened with death by Idi Amin’s goon squad. The story continues:

“Father in heaven,” I prayed, “you who have forgiven men in the past, forgive these men also. Do not let them perish in their sins but bring them into yourself.”

It was a simple prayer, prayed in deep fear. But God looked beyond my fears and when I lifted my head, the men standing in front of me were not the same men who had followed me into the vestry. Something had changed in their faces.

It was the tall one who spoke first. His voice was bold but there was no contempt in his words, “You have helped us,” he said, “and we will help you. We will speak to the rest of our company and they will leave you alone. Do not fear for your life. It is in our hands and you will be protected.”

I was too astonished to reply. The tall one only motioned for the others to leave. He himself stepped to the doorway and then he turned to speak one last time. “I saw widows and orphans in your congregation,” he said. “I saw them singing and giving praise. Why are they happy when death is so near?”

It was still difficult to speak but I answered him. “Because they are loved by God. He has given them life, and will give life to those they loved, because they died in Him.”

His question seemed strange to me, but he did not stay to explain. He only shook his head in perplexity and walked out the door. I stared at the open door of the vestry for several moments and then sat down on a nearby straw mat chair. My knees were no longer strong and I could feel my whole body tremble. I could not think clearly. Less than ten minutes before, I had considered myself a dead man. Even though I was surrounded by 7,000 people there was no human being to whom I could appeal. I could not ask the elders to pray, I could not appeal to the mercy of the Nubian killers. My mouth had frozen and I had no clever words to speak. In that moment, with death so near, it was not my sermon that gave me courage, or an idea from Scripture. It was Jesus Christ, the living Lord.[1]

RESPONSE: Today I will walk in the power of the living Lord and not in my own strength or courage.

PRAYER: Lord, help me realize that You are my sufficiency. Without You, I can do nothing.

1. F. Kefa Sempangi, A Distant Grief, Glendale, CA: G/L Publications, 1979, pp.120-121.

Standing Strong Through The Storm (SSTS), a daily devotional message by SSTS author Paul Estabrooks. © 2011 Open Doors International. Used by permission.

LHM Devotion - May 27, 2018 - A Real Showstopper

https://www.lhm.org/dailydevotions/default.asp?date=20180527

Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"A Real Showstopper"

May 27, 2018

(Jesus said) "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it."

In Matthew 13:45-46, Jesus told the parable of a merchant whose specialty was the buying and selling of pearls. Over time, the man had learned how to accurately judge the quality and value of a pearl by its luster and luminescence. Although the man made a success of himself and actually became quite wealthy, he was not content.

You see, our merchant believed that somewhere in the world there existed a pearl that overshadowed all the other gemstones he had ever seen. It was the search for that most singular and special of pearls that fueled both his search and his desire.

Finally, a day came when, quite by accident, he stumbled upon the pearl. The only problem was the present owner of the pearl knew what he had. The price the owner set meant our merchant would have to sell off his home and vehicles, get rid of his stocks, and cash in his retirement accounts.

Can I tell you, would you believe me if I said he never looked back. That's the story Jesus told 2,000 years ago. Here's an alternate and true version of the story.

It begins with an out-of-luck Philippine fisherman. Things went from bad to worse when a house fire forced him to move and dispose of his goods and trinkets. He was particularly sad to sell one bit of bric-a-brac. He had picked up the object when he had to make a dive off Palawan Island and was freeing his boat's anchor from some rocks.

The object took his fancy; he brought it home and kept it under his bed. But now it, too, had to be sold. The fisherman tried to get an idea of how much the item was worth so he took it to a learned friend who investigated.

This is what the friend found. The Philippine fisherman had discovered the world's largest pearl which weighed in at 75 pounds. Indeed, it was five times larger than its closest competitor.

And if you are wondering what a 75-pound pearl is worth, I'll tell you. It's $100,000,000.

So there you have it: two stories about pearls which are worth a lot.

As you can see, there are major differences between the tales. One man was knowledgeable; the other ignorant. One man searched for his pearl; the other found it accidentally. One man cherished his find; the other hid his under his bed.

Yes, there are differences, and there is this similarity: both men were made rich by the possession of a pearl. Just as you and I are made rich when we have Jesus as our Savior. Consider for a moment just how spiritually wealthy you are: do you have a sin, it is erased by Jesus' sacrifice; do you feel alone, you have a Friend in the Savior; do you have cares and concerns, Jesus is willing to help you carry them. Do you ever worry about death? You don't need to. Jesus has a place prepared for you after this life is over.

Because of the Christ, we have been made most wealthy indeed.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, without You, Your Son, and Your intervention, we would be spiritually poor and destitute. We give thanks that Jesus has made us rich in blessings which are showered down upon us in this world and the next. In His Name I pray. Amen.

The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by McKinley Corbley for Good News on August 24, 2018. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written: https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/fire-forces-man-sell-good-luck-pearl-turns-worth-76mil/

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin! Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int'l LLL (LHM).
In Matthew 13:45-46, Jesus told the parable of a merchant whose specialty was the buying and selling of pearls.

Notre Pain Quotidien - Dieu en chair et en os

https://www.ministeresnpq.org/2018/05/27/dieu-en-chair-et-en-os/

Dieu en chair et en os


Pourvoyez aux besoins des saints. Exercez l’hospitalité. (V. 13)

Mon mari est parti en voyage pendant un mois, et je me suis presque immédiatement sentie dépassée par mes responsabilités professionnelles, ménagères et familiales. Une échéance de rédaction approchait à grands pas. La tondeuse est tombée en panne. Mes enfants étaient en relâche scolaire et s’ennuyaient. Comment allais‑je pouvoir m’occuper de tout par moi‑même ?

Je n’ai cependant pas tardé à me rendre compte que je n’étais pas seule. Des amis de l’église sont venus me donner un coup de main. Josh est venu réparer ma tondeuse. John m’a apporté à manger un midi. Cassidy m’a aidée à faire la lessive. Abi a invité mes enfants à jouer avec les siens pour que je puisse m’acquitter de mes tâches. Dieu s’est servi de chacun de ces amis pour subvenir à mes besoins. Ils ont été des exemples vivants du genre de communauté que Paul décrit dans Romains 12. Ils ont aimé sans hypocrisie (V. 9), ils ont usé de prévenances réciproques (V. 10), ils ont pourvu à mes besoins et ils ont exercé l’hospitalité envers moi (V. 13).

En raison de l’amour que mes amis m’ont témoigné, j’ai pu me réjouir en espérance et rester patiente dans l’affliction (V. 12), même celle modérée d’avoir été une mère monoparentale pendant un mois. Mes frères et sœurs en Christ sont devenus pour moi ce qu’un ami appelle « Dieu en chair et en os ». Ils m’ont montré le genre d’amour sincère que nous devons manifester envers tous, surtout envers ceux de notre communauté de foi (GA 6.10). Et j’aspire à leur ressembler davantage.

Pour qui dois-je être « Dieu en chair et en os » aujourd’hui ?


© 2018 Ministères NPQ
Mon mari est parti en voyage pendant un mois, et je me suis presque immédiatement sentie dépassée par mes responsabilités professionnelles, ménagères et familiales.