From the Pastor
Dear Peace family,
I need to do a better job of inviting! I come from a family that practices gracious invitation. My Mom and Dad made it a priority to invite people who didn’t have family around to join them on holidays. I recall Easter and Christmas dinners spent with all sorts of people I had never met before. The dinner conversations centered on the visitor’s customs and were less about our family’s traditions. My sisters practice gracious invitation still to this day because of the pattern set by my parents.
I haven’t quite picked up the practice of gracious invitation, however. It’s probably because everyone’s shoes are tossed here and there in our family room. It might be because our schedules are so busy that we just want a day off for ourselves. It might be because I haven’t intentionally taken the time to find someone to invite. Whatever the case may be, I have set a personal goal to better practice the art of gracious invitation this summer.
Consider Jesus’ words in Luke 14:12-14:
Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
When we practice gracious invitation, we begin to live out Jesus’ command to be servants. Did you know that serving is good for you? A 2010 study of more than forty-five hundred American adults revealed that of the people who volunteered an average of more than one hundred hours per year, 68 percent reported feeling physically healthier. And 73 percent said that volunteerism “lowered my stress levels,” and 89 percent stated that service “has improved my sense of well-being.”
Why don’t we serve? I like what Zach Zehnder wrote in the Red Challenge:
All of us have been spoiled with the, “I want it now, gotta have it now” mentality. If you’re a good friend and I send you a text, I expect to see bubbles relatively quickly on my phone. I want to know you’re texting me back quickly. If I’m streaming a video on Netflix, I don’t want it to buffer, I want it now. If I’m watching my favorite show, I don’t want to wait until next week for the next episode—I want to binge watch the whole season now!”
I agree with Zach, but I would also say that there is another clear reason why less and less people are desiring to serve. People become burned out. Notice that in the above study that I referenced, some people didn’t see improvement with their stress levels and overall wellness after volunteering one hundred plus hours.
If being burned out speaks to you, know that you haven’t committed a sin! You are simply being human. It may be that you are stretched too thin after coming through the pandemic. It may be that the way you are serving doesn’t connect with your passions. You may need to adjust and shift to something else. It may be the right thing to back away from something you are doing to serve in a new way.
Do any of you already practice gracious invitation? I’d enjoy hearing your stories. Thank you for the many ways you serve Peace, your family and the community!
In His Joy,
Peace by the Numbers
July 2 – 10:00am – Worship Service with Communion. Fifth Sunday after Pentecost.
July 9 – 10:00am – Worship Service. Sixth Sunday after Pentecost.
July 16 – 10:00am – Worship Service with Communion. Seventh Sunday after Pentecost.
July 23 – 10:00am – Worship Service outside on the patio. Eighth Sunday after Pentecost.
July 30 – 10:00am – Worship Service. Ninth Sunday after Pentecost.
Summer Bible Study
Summer provides time to consider the teachings of Jesus. Jesus taught in an intentional way to develop people. One of the common teaching methods He used was the parable. Some of our favorite Bible stories are parables. All are welcome to discover and discuss Jesus’ unique teachings in the parables. We begin at 9 am and will meet in the fellowship hall each Sunday morning. Here is the plan:
July 2 The Great Banquet Luke 14:16-24
July 9 The Unjust Steward Luke 16:1-8
July 16 The Pharisee & Tax Collector Luke 18:9-14
July 23 The Compassionate Employer Matthew 20:1-16
July 30 The Wise & Foolish Young Women Matthew 25:1-13
August 6 The Two Builders Luke 6:46-49
August 13 The Serving Master Luke 12:35-38
August 20 Lazarus & The Rich Man Luke 16:19-30
August 27 Noble Vineyard Owner & His Son Luke 19:11-27
Faith Statement by Nora
When I think of the word faith, the words trust fall immediately jump to my mind. It took me a while to accept the fact that I can’t control everything that happens in my life; that God is the one in control. Now, looking back on all my life experiences involving stress, pain, and anxiety, I can see from a much different perspective. I see those moments were trust falls. I had to turn to God to fix what I couldn’t fix myself. And he did. I had to rely on God to catch me as I fell, to support me as I wavered in doubt. And he did. He does.
It’s easy to get trapped in a busy mind. As a student, athlete, sister, and daughter, sometimes the pressure of my own expectation of myself weighs me down. Sometimes I don’t see God throughout my struggles. I ask, “Why is this happening to me, God? Why am I anxious? Why don’t I see the brighter side of this?” But I forget to stop and process. Process the trust fall. Trust the trust fall.
As I’ve grown in my faith, I’ve recognized that God gives me challenges so I can learn from them and overcome them. That is why I chose 2nd Corinthians chapter 12 verse 10 as my life verse. – That is why I take pleasure in my weakness, in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. No matter how many sports I play or how many hours I spend at the gym, no physical strength compares to the kind of strength God gives me through hardships and struggles.
God gives me challenges, yes, but now that I’m getting to know God, growing close to God, I see these challenges as opportunities to grow. To learn about myself. To trust God’s plan for me, and not let my anxiety take away the excitement of my future from me. I know that he believes in me. He knows that I’m stronger than my fears, worries, and negative thoughts. He knows how strong I’ve become, and he knows how much stronger I will be as I grow in my faith. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Faith Statement by Samuel
God taught me that everything doesn’t just come easy to you. You have to work to get what you want. I have learned this lesson because of the life has given me on our farm. It takes a lot of hard work and sweat to stack the hay bales in the barn. My arms are putty the following day. This work is rewarding though, because the cows have something to eat in the winter. It also takes a lot of dedication to get all the weeding done in the yard. When it is all weeded though, it looks incredible, as if I made a real difference.
I have applied this lesson to my faith life. I have learned that in life things don’t always come easy. With the Holy Spirit’s help, I have come to understand that God will be with me anytime, anywhere and when I am down. My Confirmation verse is Proverbs 9:10: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge of the Holy One is insight.” I am going to apply this passage in my life by studying, preparing and deepening my faith as I grow older.
I am also counting on the very special people God has placed around me. In particular-my grandmother. She has shown God’s love and care to me by the way she has taught me farm life. She shows patience in how she teaches me. I hope to be the same kind of person to other people around me!
Peace is going to the Corvallis Knights on Wednesday, July 19. The game begins at 6:35 pm as the Knights face the Kelowna Falcons. Pastor Lucke has 25 tickets for the game—see him if you would like to go. Watching the game is great, but even better than that is enjoying a summer evening with Peace friends.
Updating Pictures of the Congregation
We need your picture! Peace is updating its directory and the hallway pictures in the month of July. Consider staying a little while after service to get your picture taken. Be looking for Trudy Ewing (or someone else holding a camera) in the church narthex. Getting your picture taken and then displayed truly helps our membership know each other better.
Common Cup Returning in July
Peace will be offering the Blood of Christ in the Common Cup beginning in July for those who commune at the rail. We are adding this option back to Holy Communion. We are keeping the communion packages available for those who would like to take communion from the pew. And we are offering the Blood of Christ in individual cups at the rail.
Congratulations to our Grads – Nicolas & Ingrid
Pizza and Pool Party at the Luckes
Families and those young at heart are all invited to the Luckes on Thursday, July 27 at 6:00 pm. Pizza will be provided. Bring a side dish to share and swimming attire if you would like to swim. Please RSVP (email Alicia at [email protected]) with us if you plan on attending. Our address is 6206 SW Grand Oaks Drive.
Peace is Hosting a CEF led Bible Club
Peace will be hosting a CEF led Bible Club July 10-14 from 2:00-3:30pm. The them of the club is “Jesus my Savior and Friend”. They will do music, games, and memory work, and Bible lessons.
Fitness Classes at Shepherd of the Valley
Shepherd is developing our wellness program by partnering with Rochelle Shwab to offer a targeted class to help our older individuals maintain an active body so they can stay active in our churches and their vocations. Rochelle recently retired from teaching fitness classes for OSU’s staff and faculty and is currently employed at Timber Hill Athletic Club. The class being offered at Shepherd is a personal ministry of hers that she has been offering for over 10 years.
Sports Physicals for Students
Identifying Special Needs Children
Food Preservation Workshop
June’s Kids Kloset Needs
June’s Kids Kloset needs the following items:
- Boys Cotton Tee Shirts – Sizes 4, 6, 8, 10 (8-10 packs please)
- Girls underwear – Sizes 6 and 10
Funnies for July
Pastor Kenneth Pollitz of New Creation Lutheran Church, Ottawa, Ohio, a former high-school and college basketball player, passed on the following “basketball theology”.
Center/Forward – Where nobody usually sits on Sunday mornings.
Free throw – A toddler’s toss of toys
Time out – A sermon gone too long.
On the bench – The organist or pianist.
Three-point play – The structure of any good sermon.
Offensive foul – A newly discovered baby’s messy diaper.
Ejection – Taking an inconsolable child out of the nursery.
Pre-game warmups – The lighting of the altar candles.
Traveling – Parents walking back and forth with upset children in the back of the church.
Transition game – Movement of people from Sunday school to worship.
Turnover – Exchange of an upset infant between parents (also known as the chest pass).
Opening tip – Suggestion of a short sermon due to the roast in the oven.
Change of possession – The offering.
Fast break – Children returning to their seats after the children’s sermon. Also sometimes used to describe the children’s movement to the snacks after worship.
Slam dunk – Shorter than usual sermon.
20-second time out – A brief exit to the restroom.
Rebound – Inspiring special music following a boring sermon.
Pastor Bill Bader of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Onalaska, Wisconsin, was delivering a children’s sermon on the proper management of time. He asked the little ones seated on the floor around him, “Can you think of ways in which you waste time?” One three year old girl replied, “How about taking a bath?”
Benjamin Leese, fifteen, who teaches Sunday school for the third-graders at Trinity Lutheran Church, East Berlin, Pennsylvania, asked his students: “What is a prophet?”. One young boy quickly replied, “When someone makes a good investment.”
A Sunday school teacher challenged her children to take some time on Sunday afternoon to write a letter to God. They were to bring back their letter to the following Sunday. On little boy wrote: “Dear God, we had a good time at church today. Wish you could have been there.”