+ Welcome to Pastor Kerr’s Blog +
These Posts are the first in a series of short Blog messages or devotions which I might be of interest offering comfort and hope but also offering insights into different aspects of the ministry life of West Portal Lutheran Church and school.
The format and content will vary from post to post. As always, I welcome feedback and suggestions for future discussion.
Blessings and Peace in our Lord Jesus Christ
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+ 22 March 2020– Weekend Thoughts from Pastor Kerr +
On Whom Do You Lean on These Days?
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 1 Peter 5:7-10
Dear WPL Family,
Well, I don’t know about you but there is no way that less than a week ago I could have even begun to imagine how dramatically our lives would change in such a short time. All of the safe-holds we have based our lives on, suddenly are weakened or not to be found at all. Going to the store to purchase just the basic necessities of everyday life is now a challenge as the once overflowing shelves are often bare. The economy is all over the place and the local and world governments and medical agencies are all struggling to effectively combat such a contagious virus.
It is in times such as these that it is important for us not to give in to hopelessness, to fall into the temptation to give up and sink into harmful depression. You are not alone the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. Let the events of the past couple of weeks be a kind of wake-up call, a time to assess what is real, important and eternal in our life.
Our lives have been changed and the lives of future generations will be different as the global community learns how to address such a dramatic global event.
The effects of this global pandemic remind us just how much we live in a broken world. We find ourselves face to face with the reality that we cannot save ourselves and how much we need a Savior. This is the whole reason that the Father sent His Jesus into the world, to bring hope, forgiveness and salvation to a hurting world.
As we begin another week filled with uncertainty, I invite you to follow the invitation offered in 1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Share your anxiety and fear with Christ We have been given a wonderful opportunity to turn away from those things that separate from our loving God.
Let us focus more on the many blessings we receive each day from our Heavenly Father by using this time of self-quarantine to focus on the family. Even though we must be physically separated from others, take time to reach out by phone, and other social media with extended family and friends. Consider checking on the elderly, someone who is home-bound, someone who is lonely and might need to hear a friendly voice. Let us discover or rediscover what it means to a community filled with faith, hope and love, a love that reaches beyond all human understanding.
Despite the present uncertainty and anxiety, we will survive, we will rise above the stress and strain of the coming weeks, but we cannot do it on our own.
I have attached a link to a wonderful old hymn entitled Leaning on the Everlasting Arms which offers a beautiful prayer affirming faith in Jesus even in the hardest of life’s moments. I invite you to listen, to sing along and even share it with others.
This week I encourage you to lean on the everlasting arms of Jesus.
+ Peace and Joy in Christ our Savior +
Pastor J. Wayne Kerr
P.S. Please encourage the children to look for an email from me to their own WPL email address, with a weekly Chapel Video. This is something new for us but an exciting opportunity to share God’s Love through a different media platform.
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+ 20 March 2020 + Joy Comes in the Morning!
IMPORTANT INSTRUCTIONS! [Trust me and do as I ask and ye shall be rewarded]
First – Click on or Paste the following address in your browser and listen to this cool recording of a Slovenian Gospel Choir called Bee Geesus
Second – Read aloud Psalm 30:4-5
Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints,
and give thanks to his holy name
For his anger is but for a moment,
and his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may tarry for the night,
but joy comes with the morning. Psalm 30:4-5
Thoughts from Pastor Kerr…
Good Morning Everyone!
I hope and pray everyone is safe, well and happy as we settle in for what looks like a longer period of confinement than we thought. I don’t know about you, but I feel like I’m in some really scary science-fiction movie, and we are just waiting for the next wave of devastation to hit us.
God’s WORD reminds us to place our trust and hope in Him. We are born into a world broken and hurting, a world that is filled with anxiety and fears, loneliness and struggles. It is important to always remember that Jesus came into the world for such times as these, to bring hope, forgiveness, mercy and especially salvation.
As the Psalmist says in verse 5 Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.
Even though we are struggling at the moment trying to make sense of what is happening around us, we experience God’s unfailing love in so many ways. Think about how much you are blessed with family and friends who love you. One of the greatest blessings we have is our WPL Church family. You have a warm and safe home and all of the necessities of life. God’s love and concern for all of us surrounds us every day!
Yes, there are always new challenges, we may feel sad, lost and alone, anxious, and frustrated, and then we realize just how helpless we really are and that we need a Savior now more than ever. Even though we may feel surrounded by the darkness of fear, through faith living in Jesus we can rest assured that Joy Does Come in the Morning! Use this time to learn and grow, to live each day in confidence as a child of God. My hopes and prayers are always with all of our WPL Family.
Have a wonderful new day living in the Light of the Lord!
+ Peace and Joy +