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From the Pastor’s Desk….
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say Rejoice!” – Philippians 4:4
My mom had a favorite poem that hung on her fridge most of my growing up years. It was a fitting place to hang the poem since at the time our fridge was next to the counter that held the kitchen sink, and I could read the poem as I washed the dishes if I chose to. The poem read:
Thank God For Dirty Dishes
By Mary Stuber
Thank God for dirty dishes;
They have a tale to tell.
While others may go hungry,
We're eating very well
With home, health, and happiness,
I shouldn't want to fuss;
By the stack of evidence,
God's been very good to us.
I must admit, most days as I looked at stacks of dishes and task at hand, thankfulness was not the first thing that jumped into my mind. I very much enjoyed the meal and most of the time I enjoyed the company that the meal was shared with, but the clean-up process was a job not a joy.
My mom is nothing if not persistent though, and whenever I grumbled about the stack of dishes she would refer me to the poem and remind me of how much there was to be thankful for in having dishes to wash. It’s funny how things come flooding back to you at times. We got a little bit of water in our basement last week. Once again, I inwardly grumbled, but then I thought about what an absolute blessing it is to have a home that is filled with people I love and who love me. Beyond that, there were friends with skills and sound advice who provided guidance as we cleaned up the mess and got to the bottom of the water issue. Good friends and helpful community businesses--there was more to be thankful for. At the end of the day, I was tired, so I took the twins out to our favorite restaurant. (I’m thankful for dishes after all, and sometimes I am also thankful for places that will wash them for us). The restaurant staff know us by name, they are our friends, and so again I was thankful…not just for the food but for the measure of love that came along with it.
The Apostle Paul writes “rejoice in the Lord always,” while he sits in a prison cell because he had been arrested for preaching the Gospel. The church in Philippi had sent some money and one of their members to support and care for Paul in his time of need. There was much to be discouraged about, but even in that time of discouragement, Paul found hope in Christ and the promise that not even death can separate us from God’s love. Even in prison, God could be counted on to provide. In this case, the help came through the hands and hearts of the church in Philippi. Even in that dark prison cell, God’s love allowed the light of joy and hope to shine.
Thanksgiving is coming. How will you spend the day? There are many possibilities these days--from football watching to shopping. Wherever Thanksgiving finds you—enjoying a meal with family, working, sleeping in, watching a game--take a second and consider the gifts of each small moment, thank the Lord even for the dishes that need to be done, and then filled with God’s love and joy, consider how you are called to share these blessings for which you can give thanks!
With Love in Christ,
November Cause of the Month
Tabitha Meals on Wheels
4720 Randolph Street
Lincoln, NE 68510
Tabitha Meals on Wheels began in 1967 as the first service of its kind in Lincoln. A regular or vegetarian hot noon meal is served to more than 500 clients daily, 365 days a year.
Despite a 62% growth rate in the last 10 years, Tabitha Meals on Wheels has not capped program numbers, unlike many other Meal on Wheels programs around the country.
Access to proper nutrition allows seniors and those with disabilities to remain safely at home. This also provides a invaluable face to face safety check for many individuals who may not see another person all day.
Donors to Meals on Wheels and hundreds of volunteer drivers are essential in providing this much needed service.
American Lutheran Church as had members volunteering for Meals on Wheels for over 30 years.
Thank you for supporting this cause.
*about our cause of the month
List of Causes of the Month for 2019:
January – LDR
February – ALC Quilt Supplies
March – The Pregnancy Center
April – No Footprint Too Small
May – CenterPointe, Inc.
June – Open Shelf
July – Clinic with a Heart
August – Mourning Hope
September – Prison Ministries
October – Campus Ministries
November – Tabitha Meals on Wheels
December – Lutheran World Relief Gifts
Each month the American Lutheran Church supports a different organization as our "Cause of the Month." So many different non-profits desperately need our help. None of them can operate without generous donations and funding. ALL of them need financial assistance throughout the year.
Two of the non-profits we are directly involved with in our community are the Lutheran Food Pantry, and the People's City Mission. Bring your food donations for the pantry directly to the American Lutheran Church. The People's City Mission is one of the largest, faith-based organizations in Lincoln involved in humanitarian outreach. While serving the poor and homeless is their primary endeavor, sharing the redemptive love of Jesus Christ remains their chief goal.
Lutheran Food Pantry contacts:
your ELCA or LCMS congregations
Thank you for your gift of $165, which we received on January 19, 2016. I'm grateful for your generosity as we work together to end hunger in our own country and abroad.
Your financial support at the beginning of 2016 is especially helpful. Your gift enables us to move forward with critical projects that will have an impact throughout the year ahead.
Right now, we're pressing Congress to finish work on two measures that you and other Bread for the World members helped create bipartisan support for: 1) the Global Food Security Act, which invests in smallholder farmers - especially women - in Africa and 2) the reauthorization of the child nutrition programs, including making summer meals available to more children here in the United States.
If you haven't already, please visit and sign up for online updates about these and other pieces of legislation that will help end hunger.
Thank you again for your kindness and compassion. My very best wishes for the new year.