St. Peter Lutheran Church
2929 F.M 972 (at F.M. 1105)
Walburg, Texas 78626
Office: (512) 863-
Worship Services -
Holy Communion -
Jan. 2, 2020
St. Peter Lutheran Church at Walburg, Texas
Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ Texas District
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment."
When I went away to college, I was so excited. Finally, I thought, a chance to start anew where I won't have the baggage of all the mistakes I made. Yet I found that even though I had gone to a completely new place, there was one thing that hadn't changed: me.
We all want to go someplace new where the mistakes and memories of our fallen human nature will no longer bother us. Perhaps that is why New Year is so enticing. It is a collective lie we all tell ourselves: this year will be different. Indeed, the New Year's Resolution has moved from being a serious endeavor to an ironic cliché. That is because we have not really been thinking about how radical a change must occur. We have been thinking we need better hearts, but the Gospel tells us we need new hearts. We have been thinking that with enough work we can make ourselves righteous and just, but God has told us that we need we can only change when we accept the gift of the only One who is truly righteous and just.
And so our New Year's Resolutions turn out to be not just too big, but impossible for us. We cannot fashion a new us out of our old stuff. We cannot make ourselves over again, because there is always something we cannot change just beyond our grasp. But thanks be to God that He can make something new out of us! And this does not happen once a year. It happens whenever we take communion. It happens weekly when we confess our sins. It happens daily for each Christian who awakens with Christ in his or her heart. Indeed, it can happen moment by moment whenever we go to our Lord in Prayer.
So just as the heartache is too deep for human beings to mend on our own, so too is the balm great which is available for us day in and day out. The only thing that is required of us is to lay hold of it and take it.
We are always disappointed when our plans to begin again don't pan out. But that is not the end of the story, for each moment of life is a new lease on life and Christ has promised to be at the center of this life if we let him.
Chance for A New Start
An Extra & Special Message: Christian Education
Many of us can point to a moment where Christ's promises finally rang true like a church bell in the morning and I'll wager that many more of us can point to times in our life where God felt so real we could practically swear we were in the throne room; but when the bells recede or we step down from the highest heavens we have to ask ourselves a simple question, "Just what was that all about anyway?"
The noted Christian writer, N.T. Wright, shares the story of a man named James who had a wonderful "come to Jesus moment." However, after the initial joy wore off, James began wondering just what it all meant. Wright notes that our culture is very good at "winning souls" but not as good at explaining what that "victory in Jesus" actually means.
When I was a young seminarian, I lamented to my father that we really needed an Evangelism 2.0 ... an Evangelism for people after they believe. My dad said that such a thing did exist, it's called discipleship. And while Christian Education is not all of discipleship, no one can doubt the importance of its presence or the dreadful results of its absence.
Our church is focused on three objectives for Christian Education: We wish to provide instruction over the Bible. We want to help people explore The Lutheran interpretation. And most importantly, we want them to be equipped to share the Good News. Let us examine each of these points and why they are important.
The Bible: Martin Luther has said, "Nothing helps more powerfully against the devil, the world, the flesh, and all evil thoughts than occupying oneself with God's Word, having conversations about it, and contemplating it." Therefore placing Scripture in people's hearts and minds is the surest way to give them the promised peace of paradise.
The Lutheran Viewpoint: "Faith is a divine work in us. It changes us and makes us to be born anew of God. It kills the old Adam and makes altogether different people, in heart and spirit and mind and powers, and it brings with it the Holy Spirit." Martin Luther points this out about faith. Luther himself felt that if his works were destroyed, he would be fine so long as people were reading the Word. That is really all Lutheranism is about, getting people into the presence of God as seen in Word and Sacrament.
Sharing the Good News: Luther declared, "If he have faith, the believer cannot be restrained. He betrays himself. He breaks out. He confesses and teaches this gospel to the people at the risk of life itself." Many people are afraid that God will not be pleased in their proclamation. Sometimes we worry about offending people with such good news. However, people must be reminded that the point of being given the "Good News" is not to hoard it but to give it away freely. Much like a Lutheran potluck, we know there is far more for us to have than we can ever finish.
The point of our Christian education is to facilitate all three of these core issues. We have done that this year through Biblical studies and book studies. Next year we hope to continue with a more robust new members class, more Bible studies, and classes dealing with the important issue of Evangelism. We hope to see you for all of these things both in class and, when possible, online.