TLO Disciple
April 2016 -- Gifted to Serve

Pastor's Message 
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change." James 1:17
TLO's Vision Statement:
Faithful in Word
Joyful in Fellowship
Gifted to Serve

This month's TLO Disciple will look closely at the third part of the TLO Vision: Gifted to Serve
  • Being called by Christ to use our gifts to build up the Body of Christ.
  • Everyone has been given Spiritual gifts distributed according to the will of the Holy Spirit (Heb 2:4).
  • Having a true, active faith that will demonstrate itself through good works (James 2).
  • Being willing to use our gifts to serve others wherever we are in our faith walk.
The same Spirit that works faith in us also gives to each Christian gifts to be used in service to others (1 Peters 4:10) and for the building up of Christ's church (Eph. 4:12).  Ours is an active faith producing good works (Eph 2:10) for faith without works is dead (James 2:26).  Therefore, we will use our gifts as stewards of God's grace in whatever station God has places us-in our family, work, school, church, and community-thereby proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our world.

God is a giver God.
It can be said that God has two areas where he bestows gifts.
First, God is the giver of every physical gift
God is gracious and gives physical gifts through His creation, believer and unbeliever alike.  God the Father gives every person life and breath and all that is needed to sustain this body and life (1st Article). He is the Father of our Lord Jesus, His only begotten Son from eternity (2nd Article), and He sends the Holy Spirit who Anointed Jesus at His baptism (3rd Article).
Second, God is the giver of every Spiritual gift
God is the giver of Spiritual gifts we need for eternal life through the Gospel and that we use to His glory and the building up of the Church. It might surprise you to learn the sequence of God bestowing His Spiritual gifts to us is reversed.  God grants His Spiritual gifts when the Holy Spirit creates faith through in baptism (3rd Article); The faith is in Jesus who won salvation for us (2nd Article); Faith in Jesus gives glory to God the Father and receives the unique gifts God gave you (1st Article).

God's good and perfect gift
The greatest gift that God gave is the gift of His one and only Son.  For Jesus is the Lamb of God who gave His life for us on the cross and on the third day rose for our justification. This month, as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, let us receive every good and perfect gift of God's grace with open hearts in true faith, and serve the Lord with gladness.

Pastor James L. Kroonblawd
Gifted to Serve
What Spiritual gifts does God give?
  • Some gifts of the Holy Spirit save us.
Through the Means of Grace, His Word, Baptism and the Lord's Supper, God gives his saving gifts of faith, forgiveness, life and salvation.   "Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ"  1 Peter 3:21
  • Some gifts of the Holy Spirit are given to every Christian
Gifts given to every Christian include, wisdom, knowledge of God, righteousness, the Fruit of the Spirit.  "But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ's gift." Ephesians 4:7
  • Some gifts of the Holy Spirit serve us Spiritually.
"And He gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes." Ephesians 4:11-14
  • Some gifts of the Holy Spirit are spiritual gifts that are personal and unique to each Christian for building up the body of Christ. 
"Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 1 Corinthians 12:4-7
  • Some gifts of God are not Spiritual gifts, rather are creaturely gifts that do not give the Gospel but can be used flowing from faith to bless the neighbor. 
"Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law."  Romans 13:10
From the Apology to the Augsburg Confession
"Each one is to serve faithfully with his own gift and therein know that for Christ's sake he has forgiveness of sins through faith and is accounted righteous before God" (Apology to the Augsburg Confession, XXIII, 39).

Gifted to serve
God has brought you into this fellowship with His Son through the Gospel and gifted you to serve His Church for building up of the Body of Christ.  Where will you serve?
The following TLO leadership opportunities will be elected at the May 15, 2016 TLO Congregation Voters meeting.
-Vice President
-Board of Stewardship Chair
-Board of Elders
-Board of Youth Chair
-Board of Worship Chair
-Board of Christian Education
-Board of Trustees
-Board of Endowment
To submit nominations, contact the Nominating Committee: Sharon Drews , Jim Howe or Jon Peterson.

TLO Ministry Opportunities
First Saturday Mission
Make it your personal mission to set aside the first Saturday of the month to respond to the blessings we have received from God by serving our congregation and community.   

Please join us for TLO's 1st Saturday Mission Project on April 2 from 9:30-11:30 a.m.!  We will be meeting in the gym to bag diapers and baby wipes for Amnion Crisis Pregnancy Center.  You are welcome to bring a package of baby wipes, we'll have plenty of diapers!  Amnion T-shirts will be given out to those participating, or you can wear one that you already have.  We look forward to all ages helping with this project!  Sign up here!
Mini-Course Day 
Do you have an interest or hobby you could share with our TLO School students on May 13? Mini-courses are intended to give students the opportunity to experience and learn things that are different from our regular curriculum. Ideas include knitting, cooking, woodworking, painting, 
  and more! Friday, April 8 is the deadline to  return the interest form.  

Work Day  April 9
Spring cleaning in GOD'S house needs to happen just like in your house!  We have an  organized list of the work that needs to be done-both inside and outdoor work. Bring hand tools, cleaning supplies, and a happy attitude on  April 9!  

Nation-wide service

Check out the service opportunities happening around our nation through the LC-MS Synod!

For more encouraging ways to serve, click here.

From the Apology to the Augsburg Confession
"Following Christ is done by each in his calling. All do not have the same calling. One is called to be a ruler, a second to be a father of a family, a third to be a preacher....Callings are personal, just as occupations vary with times and persons" (Apology to the Augsburg Confession XXVII, 49. German, Latin).
Grow in understanding
Freedom in Christ--Gift and Demand
"Freedom," is a word we often hear and highly prize.  In this study Pastor Kroonblawd will explore three themes of Scripture from an article written by Edgar Krentz: Freedom as Gift, The Rulers of This Age, and Freedom as Demand.  We will look closely at how the apostle Paul understood the three enemies every person faces-sin, death and the devil-as slavery, and the freedom and liberty that comes only through faith in Christ Jesus.

Join us for Bible study Sundays at 9:15am beginning, April 10, 2016 for this engaging study led by Pastor James Kroonblawd in the TLO Gym.
Serving the Lord through our vocations
Your Family Vocation  
Every Christian - indeed, every human being - has been called by God into a family. Our very existence came about by our parents. Luther says, "God has given this walk of life, fatherhood and motherhood, a special position of honor, higher than that of any other walk of life under it."  More... 

Called to Our Work
We don't choose our vocations; God chooses us for them. The Christian can understand the ordinary labors of life to be charged with meaning. Through our labor, no matter how humble, God is at work.  More... 

Masks of God
Luther puts it strongly: Vocations are "masks of God." On the surface, we see an ordinary human face - our mother, the doctor, the teacher, the waitress, our pastor - but, beneath the appearances, God is ministering to us through them. God is hidden in human vocations.  More...

Called to Be Citizens
Christians are called to be citizens: to obey laws, pay their taxes and honor - and pray for - their governing officials. Patriotic feelings and acts of civic-mindedness are fitting responses to the blessings God has given this country and the citizenship to which He has called us.   More...

Editor's note
TLO Disciple, with a topical study in each issue, is distributed primarily via email on the first of every month.  Print copies are available by contacting the TLO Church office at 651-454-7235 or the Church Office via email.

Calendars, volunteer information, serving groups and the like will accompany the TLO Together, on the last Wednesday of the month.   Click here for March 30 issue.  This publication is also mailed upon request.
Soli Deo gloria

TLO Leaf Logo and Name
2950 Highway 55   
Eagan MN  55121