About Sermons

“God’s WORD has the power to convert people unless hindered by those who bring the word… The pulpit is not a place for a man to put his learning on parade, but where God’s WORD should be preached simply, and yet, powerfully.” 1

This comment on the art of preaching, made by Philipp Jakob Spener, first appeared in the 1675 publication of his classic work Pia Desideria. Decades ago when I attended Luther Seminary in St. Paul, MN, I copied Spener’s word into a small notebook. That notebook has been on my desk ever since. Spener’s words have served as a constant reminder to me that whenever a preacher steps into the pulpit a great responsibility rests on their shoulders. A good preacher strives to translate the Word of God to God’s people in a way that is easily understood, promotes faith, and inspires action. A good sermon invites people into a fresh experience of God and encourages them to live a vigorous Christian life. Faithful preachers know that whatever else we do, we had better not get in the way of God’s Word Of Life!

There has always been a need for sermons that help worshippers connect their lives with God’s Word. That is why the sermon has long been at the core of Lutheran worship. But in today’s multisensory, multimedia, multicultural, and secularly oriented world that need is even greater. Listening to or reading a sermon gives us an opportunity for respite from a world that moves at what increasingly feels like the speed of light. Sermons allow us to converse with God and to reflect on the wonders of his world on his terms and in his time. I believe that a listener or reader with an open mind and heart will find that a sermon is not just a “religious” experience. They will find that hearing or reading a sermon is also very much a “spiritual” experience.

It is my hope and prayer that as you listen to and/or read the sermons found here, you will hear God’s Holy Word and feel his sacred embrace. It is my hope that these sermons will be, for you, an experience of God in your world.

*Sunday’s sermon should be posted by the following Tuesday at noon.
Grace and Peace,
Pastor Amy

1: Philipp Jakob Spener, Pia Desideria, (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press).

From Baptism to Boot Camp

From the waters of baptism to the dust of the desert, Lent begins. If we are the “beloved” of God, why does life seem so hard? Demons challenge us. Our appetites confront us. We face temptations of materialism, power, and prestige. Our         wilderness journey is instructive. We are learning Jesus. We are learning that we […]

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Peter is Me, and Peter is you.

It is good for us to be here. Community is important. Church family is important. It can be hard being a Jesus follower these days. Life can be hard these days. We need each other. We make each other better. That’s what community is all about. In our gospel lesson Peter says, “Lord, it is […]

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Living in Community

For the next several weeks while Pr. Amy recovers from surgery, Good Shepherd will have as our quest Pastor, Rev. Linda Smith. Today she shared with us this poem by Marilyn Maciel. Published in Patti Digh, “Life Is a Verb: 37 Days to Wake Up, Be Mindful, And Live Intentionally (Rowman & Littlefield, 2008), pg. […]

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Beyond the Daily News

I’ve got an iPhone which means I have APPs and feeds and notifications and all sorts of other things that I can’t seem to control. Every time there is a software update there seems to be a new layer of entertainment or information that I have to opt out of before I can get the […]

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Let it be so now

This time of year, squirrels can be a bit of a problem. Maybe you have had a less than favorable experience with squirrels. They take up residence in all sorts of places, and seem especially attracted to gnawing on car wiring and cedar fencing. Maybe you have heard about the four country churches in a […]

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Christmas and Mud

And now, now it’s time to close the door on the Season of Advent and knock on the door of Christmas. What causes that Christmas door to open for you?  For me, the door to the sacred space-time of Christmas is unlocked by stories. The best story of all, of course, is the one […]

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Are You Preparing The Way

Sometimes for me this time of year can seem less like a season of joyful anticipation, and more like a mad dash to the December 25th finish line. There are boxes to get out of the attic and Christmas decorating to do, the tree to set up, stockings to hang, gifts to buy. Maybe like […]

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Pesky Prophets

Paul Piff: Does money make you mean? Nick Hanauer: Beware, fellow plutocrats, the pitchforks are coming …What are we going to do with John this morning? He’s a real thorn in our side today. He’s preaching judgement which is not very welcoming. Grace is welcoming; judgement isn’t so friendly. What to do? Should we take […]

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Between the Already and the Not Yet

Grace mercy and peace to you in the name of our Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. Happy New Year! The liturgical colors on the altar have changed to deep blue -this is secret code in Lutheran that Advent is here. Advent seems to have sneaked up on us quickly this year. If you are like […]

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