Friday, July 31, 2020

The old man sat in the worn recliner, finishing his lunch while talking to one of the nursing aides. His eyes, with a vacant, distant gaze made the young woman sad. She had spent the last half hour with him to keep him company. Little had she expected the man to pour out a lifetime of regrets. As she took the tray, she wondered if she would feel the same when she got to his age. Would she ache at the thought of spending the best years of her life on things which she would later realize, were superficial and unimportant. Tragic was the only word to describe what she felt.

Some have many regrets, others few, but everybody has some. For all too many older Christians, a major regret in life is not having accepted Christ’s invitation to pray on a daily basis. During their busy years prayer was a chore, a ritual motivated by guilt or superstition, but rarely, if ever, a privilege, a solace, a refuge. But then the busyness ended. The activities ceased. Worse, no one needed them to do anything. And so, there was time, time to pray. And the more they prayed, the more they were blessed. In fact, it was prayer that would get them through the day. Their reaction to this unexpected blessing was bittersweet. For on the one hand they praised God for their times together, while on the other hand, they mourned it had taken them so long to experience the celebration of prayer.

Will we have the same regrets?

Worship service times: Saturday: 6:00 pm, Sunday: 9:00 am & 10:30 am.

Friday, July 24, 2020

The Blindside

A quarterback’s worst nightmare is to hear from behind the sound of a gargantuan defensive end an instant before making contact. The impact is sudden, unexpected and often leads to severe injury. The downside of playing quarterback is “the blindside”.

But football players aren’t the only ones who take unexpected hits. Every day ordinary people throughout the world are blindsided by pain, suffering and problems of every size and shape. It happens so frequently you’d think we would come to expect such things. And yet, every time it happens, we are taken by surprise. We express our shock with statements like, “I never thought anything like this would happen to me?”

Jesus warned about having unrealistic expectations about life. He openly said there are going to be a lot of problems to be faced in this life. And that is why he told his followers to pray, “And deliver us from evil.” That each of us will have to face seasons of suffering, should come as no surprise. The world in which we live is not as God created it. Evil abounds in the place of God’s love. That’s why the best preparation for life’s blindsides is the prayer “deliver us from evil.”

Just as you don’t want to be unprepared for Hurricane Douglas, join us for one of our weekend services so you aren’t blindsided by Hurricane Life.

Worship service times: Saturday: 6:00 pm, Sunday: 9:00 am & 10:30 am.

Friday, July 17, 2020

Normally, our reaction to an invitation is positive. We think of invitations to a dinner or a party or a wedding. What’s great about an invitation is that it is a request for us to participate, but only by our choice. We are usually not forced to either accept or turn down an invitation. It’s up to us.

After reading the title of this article, you might have thought it to be a little strange because temptation is seen as a way to get us to do something evil or diabolical, rather than an invitation. And yet, it is in every sense of the word. When we are tempted, we are not forced into any kind of behavior. What we choose to do is entirely up to us. We can embrace the temptation, or we can walk away from it.

What is essential to remember about temptation is that it is an invitation to live without God. It is an appeal to our egos to take control of our lives without having to answer to anyone or anything. To most of us, that’s very attractive. “No one telling us what to do! Living large! Taking control of our destiny!´ But it is all a deception, separating us from the One for whom and by whom we were created. Apart from God, our lives lose their value, purpose and sense. We become, as the old song goes, “Dust in the wind.”

If you sense it’s time to rethink some of the invitations you’ve been accepting lately, join us for one of our weekend services. The invitation of Jesus Christ will help you see which other invitations you should accept or turn down.

Worship service times: Saturday: 6:00 pm, Sunday: 9:00 am & 10:30 am.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Bittersweet Forgiveness

There is nothing easier than to write a paragraph about the benefits of learning to forgive other people. There is nothing more difficult than to put what one wrote into real life practice. Learning to truly forgive another person from the heart after experiencing a vicious hurt from that individual can be an agonizing process.

While we can often see and feel our bitterness and resentment toward the other person dragging us down into a dungeon of unhappiness, there is something in us which refuses to believe forgiveness will lead to freedom from that prison. We deceive ourselves into believing that justice depends on us. We fall into the trap of thinking that to forgive is to humiliate ourselves, to become a doormat for other people. We feel forgiveness is only for those who are too weak to fight back. Deep down, we know these emotions are all lies, but for some reason we cannot give them up.

Jesus Christ encouraged his followers to pray, “Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.” It is a prescription for freedom, freedom to overcome the brutal hurts caused by others so that we can experience life in this broken world as God intends. If you’ve found yourself too often struggling to free yourself from the grasp of revenge, join us for one of our weekend worship services. It’s time to be free!

Worship service times: Saturday: 6:00 pm, Sunday: 9:00 am & 10:30 am.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Daily Bread In A Costco World

In the Lord’s Prayer Jesus taught us to ask God the Father to “give us this day our daily bread.” The words sound quaint but woefully antiquated. “Daily bread?!” How does that concept fit with a trip to Costco to buy 200 rolls of toilet paper and an 85” TV? From little on we are programmed by our society to consume. So, the idea of asking God each day for just the needed amount of food and other material products we need to stay alive, just doesn’t seem to fit.

Yes, we live in an incredibly blessed country at an incredibly blessed time in history, even during a corona virus crisis. We have more than we need every day. And that is just the point of seriously studying Jesus’ words, “Give us this day our daily bread.” It gives us the chance to think hard about from where these blessings come. We have the opportunity to consider how we are to gratefully use our wealth in the light of Christ’s death, resurrection and eternity.

Did you know that of all the different topics Jesus talked about, the use of money was one of his favorites? While he did talk about generous giving, his biggest concern was the deceptive power wealth and material things have on our spiritual lives! If you’re finding your life being driven more and more by your stuff, or lack of such stuff, join us for one of our Sunday services.

New worship service times: Sunday: 9:00 am & 10:30 am.

Hawaii Lutheran Church (WELS)

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Honolulu, HI
Community Lutheran Church holds protestant chapel services in Honolulu, Hawaii near Pearl Harbor, HI. We are next to the USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Hickam Air Force Base, and Fort Shafter Hawaii. Look for us directly behind the Salt Lake, Hawaii, Target.