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October 5 Greetings

Dear Ones,

My friend Facebook friend Robyn shared this recently:

I hate when people say, "God loves you." I want to yell back, "Prove it. Prove to me that God loves me."

"God loves you" is the easiest thing to tell someone, but if it doesn't have any action, it's meaningless. If you're not willing to love someone yourself, listen to them even when it's uncomfortable for you, and call them a friend even if you're connected only through Facebook, then don’t talk about God's love doing anything, because it has no meaning to the other person. It's just something you say to make yourself feel good.

I used to think I was crazy, until I read this verse from James 2:14-16. If we substitute "God loves you" for "Go in peace" that's exactly how I feel.

"If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,” and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that?"

May we love first before we post anything about the amazing love of God. May they see our good works and feel God's love before they ever hear it come out of our mouth.

When I think about love, especially the kind we talk about in the Bible, I am reminded that the Greek word for love—agapē—is an action verb more than a stative verb expressing a feeling. It might be better translated as “loving deeds” or “acts that benefit the other person.” When Jesus said, “Love your enemies,” he was not telling us to develop warm, fuzzy feelings towards them, but to actually do things that would benefit them: feeding the hungry, providing water to the thirsty.

So much of what we are willing to do is passive, but we cannot be followers of Christ and just sit around waiting for people to show up at our door for us to help. We know that nothing we do will earn our way into heaven, that Christ gave us salvation as a gift. We Lutherans know our good works don’t put us right with God and therefore ensure our salvation. That’s not how it works. But good works are an important tool in our kit for witnessing to God's love and mercy—not the only one but, as James points out, essential. We love because we were loved first, and helping others is our response, our gratitude response to what has first been done for us.

We at Emmanuel are working on finding ways to be more involved in our neighborhood and town. What are the needs of those around us and how can we answer those needs, being God’s feet and hands in the world?  Do you have some ideas? Share them with us! We want to be known as the church that loves Jesus and our neighbors!

It was wonderful to welcome our new members on Homecoming Sunday! Make sure you look for them before and after worship to introduce yourself.

We received the following new members:

  • Richard Fine (returning)
  • Mike French
  • Sandra Grassia
  • Elvita Landau (wife of Vince, a current member)
  • Susan Mercier
  • Francie Montgomery
  • Suzanne Stump (returning)
  • Noella Turner

A big thank you to the Care and Nurture Ministry team that delivered muffins to our shut-ins after Homecoming worship on Sunday. We want to make sure that, even when they can’t get to church, they are an important part of our church family.

Have a blessed week everyone, I hope to see you this next Sunday at our single 10:00 a.m. worship service for The Blessing of The Animals! We will be meeting outside, so bring your lawn chairs and a jacket in case it’s a little nippy. We are expecting weather in the low 70s; it should be lovely!

Here is Taryn Harbridge on violin playing “Because He Lives”. We are reminded that because He lives, we can face tomorrow. God is with us always.

Yours in Christ,

Pr Tricia

Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Prescott Valley, AZ

Emmanuel Lutheran Church

7763 E. Long Look Dr.

Prescott Valley, AZ 86314

PH (928) 772-4135

FX (928) 759-3541

website: emmanuellutheranpv.org

email: emmanuelelca@gmail.com

submissions: ELCPVnews@gmail.com

Office Hours

Monday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Tuesday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Wednesday: 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Thursday: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Friday: 9:00 a.m. 4:00 p.m.

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