From the Pastor

Peace family,

Happy and blessed New Year! The new year is an opportunity to have a fresh start.

Have you ever started a basketball game, but forgotten to tie your shoes? Have you ever started a trip, but forgotten to fill the tank? Have you ever started to take a test, but failed to read the instructions? Well, I have ample experience in doing all of these things. Let me tell you—playing basketball without your laces tied gets the attention of everyone and the game doesn’t get too far along before a fan blurts out in anger, “Hey you! Get your shoelaces tied!”

There is growing evidence that people are looking for new spiritual journeys. Many just don’t know how to start in the right way. People are trying to be more spiritual. Did you know that the ritual of reading book each day is now understood by many to be a spiritual exercise? The ritual of walking the dog is being described as a way to spiritual rest. Yoga is even being used to transform the understanding of prayer. These activities may truly be helpful and beneficial. It’s important to point out, however, that whatever we do, it is helpful to start not by our own efforts, but with the Holy Spirit’s power. Moving forward in any spiritual exercise without the Holy Spirit would be like starting the basketball game without our shoelaces tied—even worse!

Christianity is much more than simply a set of rituals that we do. It teaches that we have a special helper in the Holy Spirit to get us going, to be our fuel, to help us start. Ask people, “Who is God the Father?” They have a ready response. Ask people, “Describe God the Son.” Most will not hesitate to say that the Son is Jesus and was born on Christmas day and died on the cross. Ask people, “Who is the Holy Spirit?” They typically say, “The Holy Who?”

The Holy Spirit is described in a variety of ways. The Holy Spirit is described as the Comforter, Advocate, Counselor in John’s Gospel and letters. In Ephesians the Holy Spirit is the Deposit we can count on from God. John 16:13 calls the Holy Spirit our Guide. I Corinthians 2 calls the Holy Spirit the Revealer of Truth. Both John and I Corinthians also call the Holy Spirit our Teacher. The best news of all is the Holy Spirit is on our side. In the waters of Baptism, the Holy Spirit was given to you. Why would we begin any spiritual activity (or for that matter, anything we do in life) without calling the Holy Spirit to start us off!?!

Our Adult Bible Study class will be focusing on the Holy Spirit. All are welcome to attend to discover the person of God who is already right by our side. By doing so, we’ll recognize the fuel that God is giving us for any project, opportunity, struggle and/or challenge we may have in 2023. We’ll meet in the sanctuary each Sunday at 9:00 am for this time of encouragement.

Here is the plan:

Sunday, January 8                  Our Ally                                                           John 14:15-17

Sunday, January 15                Our Strength and Guide                                 John 3:5-8

Sunday, January 22                Our Peace and Guarantee                              Matthew 3:13-17

Sunday, January 29                Our Intercessor and Guide                             Romans 8:22-27

Sunday, February 5                Our Giver of Life                                             Matthew 3:11-12

One last story about shoes. I’ve been running for some time now. The shoes I had been running in were literally run down and I needed new running shoes. I asked the shoe salesman at a store for the exact same shoes that I had been using. His response? He told me that there was a shoe that was better and would improve my running performance. I purchased the shoes he suggested. You know what? He was right. I instantly felt the difference. It was like I had a spring in each step!

2023 is upon us. Having the Holy Spirit and recognizing the Holy Spirit’s presence will be like having that extra spring in our step.

Peace and Joy,

Pastor J

Peace by the Numbers

Plan for Worship

January 1 –10:00 am New Year’s Day Service with Communion

January 8 – 10:00 am Worship Service

January 15 – 10:00 am Worship Service with Communion

January 2210:00 am Worship Service

January 29 – 10:00 am Worship Service

Wednesday Bible Study

The Bible is not so much like a magazine that can be skimmed and put down. The Bible is more so like a mine that needs to be carefully searched. All are welcome to our mining expedition of I Timothy. We’ll be meeting in the fellowship hall on Wednesday, January 11 and Wednesday, January 25 at 2 pm. Just bring your Bible and an open heart for discovery. Here are the readings for each of these two studies and thoughts for each: 

Wednesday, January 11: Managing Relationship I Timothy 5:1-21 

Our topic? As we pass through stages of life, our relationships with others will naturally change. These role-based relationships make up a great deal of our lives, and one of the key words we need to define and practice in every kind of relationship is the word honor. 

A question to ponder. What instructions does Paul provide for treating those older than you? How do you treat those who are younger than you? 

Wednesday, January 25: Finding Contentment I Timothy 6:6-19

Our topic? If godliness describes how much we are like Christ–the degree to which we reflect his actions and character–then contentment describes the ways in which we reflect his attitude. We don’t take our cues for peace and satisfaction primarily from our environment and circumstances–but from Jesus. 

A question to ponder. Why is it so difficult to be content? What are some of the warning signs of discontentment? 

Congregational Meeting

MARK YOUR CALENDARS! The Annual Church Congregational Meeting will be held during Fellowship on Sunday, January 22nd. This meeting will give you the opportunity to hear from your church council recapping what occurred in 2022 as well as a look forward to 2023. Please plan on attending! The 2022 Annual Report will be available in the narthex on Sunday, January 8th. If you would like a copy of the Annual Report emailed to you, please let us know. 

Men’s Breakfast

Mark your calendars for January 7th, time for another Peace Men’s First Saturday Breakfast. Topic for discussion will be: “Do You Make Resolutions?”, led by Pastor Lucke. Come early, 8:00 AM, and enjoy a cup of coffee and chatting. Breakfast served at 8:30 and discussion at 9 -10. I am always looking for volunteer cooks. Contrary to popular belief too many cooks DO NOT Spoil the broth, always an enjoyable time – Please let me know whether you plan to attend, need to determine how many eggs to purchase. Contact me at: [email protected] – Hope to see many in the New Year – Thanks Oscar Gutbrod

Ladies Guild Reverse Advent

To all the wonderful Ladies of Guild & Pastor:

Thank you so much for your generosity.  Your donations allowed us to donate 3 great holiday food baskets to Love, Inc. They contained all the items on the lists plus a few extra and a $30 gift card for perishables.  I took them in today.  I had called Love, Inc on Friday to see about dropping them off and they said that they thought they had all their requests covered, but they usually got a few stragglers.  This morning they had several people contact them needing food assistance and they weren’t sure how they were going to get them what they needed and then I showed up with our baskets. They said that they were just what they needed to accommodate those new requests. Praise God!

Again, thank you for doing this with me. Being able to give is such a Blessing and just makes your heart full.  I am so grateful to now be a contributing member of our Ladies’ Guild.  Can’t wait to see what we will accomplish in 2023!

God’s Blessings and Merry Christmas!!


Community Food Bank & June’s Kids Closet for 2022

Thank you for all your continued support for this mission. We did well 2022 with a total of 350 pounds of food and related products donated to the Food Bank and 23 lbs. of clothes to June’s Kids Closet.

We are looking forward to another great year in 2023. In checking with the folks at the Food Bank, they had a few suggestions of items that they always seem to run short of. Here is a list of the main items:

  • Canned fruit
  • Soups (The ready to eat are especially good – like the chunky type)
  • Cake Mixes
  • Muffin Mixes
  • Quick meals / Easily prepared mixes
  • Less common spices and mixes

It sounds like June’s Kids Closet is doing OK currently.

Keep up all the good work that you are doing.  It may not seem like a lot, but it all adds up!

Jim H.

Ladies Guild & Love, Inc. Christmas Family

Thank you to everyone who helped make Christmas special for the family experiencing some hardship this holiday season.

Tables of Peace

Tables of Peace will be continuing this month. Tables of Peace is an opportunity for members to join in small groups for a meal and a short discussion topic. Each group will be formed with about 6-8 members per group. There will one member or couple that will be hosting the group. The groups will meet twice a month for about three months before reorganizing and making new groups. This is a great opportunity for Peace members and friends to gather to meet new people and/or to reconnect with people they have missed for the past two years.

Host/hostess responsibilities are:

  • Gather the assigned group and organize the dates to meet.
  • Either host the meal in their home or choose another location (someone else’s home or the
  • church).
  • Arrange food assignments. All meals are potluck.
  • Either lead the discussion or choose someone in the group to lead it. (Pastor will prepare

discussion topics prior to the meeting).

  • Because of COVID concerns, groups are being organized according to vaccination status. Please

indicate your status when you sign up.

Tables of Peace have been very successful in helping people have a planned opportunity to meet and

know each other on a more personal level. Please consider joining a group. For more information

contact Kay Glathar (541) 609-0620.

Dementia Warriors Thank You

We at Dementia Warriors would like to thank you all for allowing us to use and continue to use the facilities. Also backing us up and encouraging us to go on. You’ve all been there for and with us and have been so accommodating. We are truly blessed!

Thank you,

Kathy W.

Extending Peace Helping Friends of the Family

The Extending Peace Committee, in coordination with the church council, has decided to bless the Friends of the Family Mission with a grant of $10,000 to support their ongoing mission in Benton County.

Since 1994, Friends of the Family has served the Willamette Valley promoting healthy relationships and healthy homes through education and counseling. The Mission of Friends of the Family is to Bring God’s Hope, Help and Healing to a hurting world by promoting emotional, relational, and spiritual health. Their vision is to bring Healthy Relationships and Healthy Homes throughout the mid-Willamette Valley.

Love, Inc Grow Together Class

Love INC Grow Together class “Parenting the Love & Logic Way” is back again this winter! Open to all church and community members, as well as Love INC clients. Next session Jan 12th – Feb 16th. Speaking from personal experience, it’s an excellent class and lots of fun, too!

 More info/registration:


Jen H.

Executive Director

Faith & Family Day with the Ducks

For the first time in five years, we are excited to bring back the Faith & Family Day for both the Oregon Ducks Men’s and Women’s basketball seasons. We invite Peace Lutheran Church – Philomath, as well as other churches and religious organizations across Oregon and Southern Washington to join us in these special events.

 The goal of this theme day is to give church members an avenue to come together and connect after the craziness of the last two years. You’ll have the opportunity to take in a Ducks game while enjoying time together with family and members of your community. 

Churches and religious clubs/organizations will be able to take advantage of specially discounted tickets for this event. This theme night will be hosted for one Men’s game and one Women’s game. 

WHEN: Saturday, January 28th at 5pm vs. University of Utah (Men’s)

Friday, February 3rd at 7pm vs. University of Colorado (Women’s) 

WHERE: Matthew Knight Arena

1390 Villard Street

Eugene, OR 97403 

Space is limited! For further information on how to secure your tickets, please contact Bailey Levine by phone at (541) 346 – 8452 or email at [email protected]

Woodwind Quintet Plays at Peace December 19.

Computer Help

Does This Seem All Too Familiar?

Are you in a love-hate relationship with your home computer? Your PC loves to torment you and some days you hate to even turn it on.

Peace Lutheran requests your input on a potential computer training class. We want to determine if anyone is interested in such a class, and if so, what topics would you want to see discussed.

You can submit anonymous suggestions on index card(s) via one of the following:

  1. Insert card in Drop Box located in the Fellowship Hall.
  2. Slide card under the office door (Be sure to print “Computer Training” on the card).
  3. Place card in Karen Motlok’s mailbox.

Suggestion cards can be submitted through January 31st, 2023. Once suggestions (if any) have been collected, we will review to determine the level of learning desired.

First topic to get the ideas flowing:

  • I do not use my PC for online banking, or I have no money, so criminal hackers would not be interested in me.  {If your PC has an internet connection, the above statement is FALSE}.

Preparing for a New Year with Careful Thought

Article by Don Whitney

Professor, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Even those most faithful to God occasionally need to pause and think about the direction of their lives. It’s so easy to bump along from one busy week to another without ever stopping to ponder where we’re going and where we should be going.

Once, when the people of God had become careless in their relationship with him, the Lord rebuked them through the prophet Haggai: “Consider your ways!” (Haggai 1:5). He urged them to reflect on some of the things happening to them, and to evaluate their slipshod spirituality in light of what God had told them.

Ten Questions

The beginning of a new year is an ideal time to stop, look up, and get our bearings. A great time for us to “Consider our ways.” To that end, here are some questions to ask prayerfully in the presence of God.

1. What’s one thing you can do this year to increase your enjoyment of God?

Our enjoyment of God comes primarily through the means of grace he has given us. He has promised to bless us most directly and consistently through means such as his word, prayer, and the church. One specific suggestion I’d offer would be to include some meditation on Scripture along with your daily reading. It’s better to read less — if necessary — and yet as the result of meditation remember something, than to read more and remember nothing.

2. What’s an impossible prayer you can pray?

There are more than a dozen “but God” statements in Scripture, such as in Romans 5:8, which reads, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Situations that were humanly impossible were transformed by “but God” (Ephesians 2:1–7). What’s a “but God” prayer you can pray for the coming year?

3. What’s the most important thing you could do to improve your family life?

If your family doesn’t practice family worship, beginning there is the single best recommendation I could make. Just ten minutes a day, simply reading the Bible, praying, and singing together — an event that requires no preparation — is all it takes. My little book titled Family Worship can tell you more.

4. In which spiritual discipline do you most want to make progress this year?

Would it be a personal spiritual discipline (that is, one you practice alone), or an interpersonal spiritual discipline (one you practice with other believers)? Once you decide, determine the next step to take and when you will take it.

5. What’s the single biggest time-waster in your life, and how can you redeem the time?

Social media? TV? Video games? Sports? Hobbies? It’s easy for any of these (or something else) to take too much of our hearts and time. Is repentance required? Trying to stop, by itself, is probably not the answer. Actively replacing it with something better helps us in “making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16).

6. What’s the most helpful new way you could strengthen your church?

While we often stress the fact that individual believers are the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 6:15), the New Testament actually says seven times to one that the church is the body of Christ (Ephesians 5:23). We mustn’t let our frequent emphasis on our personal relationship with Christ minimize the importance of our service to Jesus through his body. How can your church be stronger this year because of you? Serving? Giving? Praying?

7. For whose salvation will you pray most fervently this year?

Praying frequently and fervently for someone’s salvation makes us more sensitive to opportunities to share the gospel with him or her. Will you commit to praying for at least one person’s salvation every day this new year?

8. What’s the most important way, by God’s grace, you will try to make this year different from last?

Obviously, God’s sovereignty rules over all things, and there is nothing we can do about much that he brings into our lives. On the other hand, under his sovereignty he gives us a measure of responsibility over many areas of life. In which of these would you most like to see a change from last year? You may find that your answer to this question is found in one of your answers above. To which of them do you sense the Holy Spirit calling your attention most urgently?

9. What one thing could you do to improve your prayer life this year?

For many, it might be as simple as designating a time exclusively for prayer instead of praying only “on the go” types of prayers. For others, it might be learning the simple, biblical practice of praying the Bible.

10. What single thing can you plan to do this year that will matter most in ten years? In eternity?

Short-term deadlines tend to dominate our attention. Busyness and fatigue often limit our vision to just getting through today. But don’t let the tyranny of the urgent distract you from something you’re neglecting that would have enormous long-term impact on your soul, your family, or your church.

Consider Your New Year

The value of many of these questions is not in their profundity, but in the simple fact that they bring an issue or commitment into focus. For example, just by making a goal to encourage one person in particular this year is more likely to help you remember to encourage that person than if you hadn’t set that goal.

If you’ve found these questions helpful, you might want to put them someplace — on your phone, computer, calendar, or wherever you put reminders — where you can review them frequently.

I hope this article will help you to “consider your ways,” to make plans and goals, and to live this new year with biblical diligence, remembering the principle that “the plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance” (Proverbs 21:5). But in all things, let’s also remember our dependence on our King, who said, “Apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).