St. John Lutheran Church Pittsburg Kansas

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Home Pastor's Message Pastor's Message 2019 Pastors Message - September 2019

Pastors Message - September 2019

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Fellow Ministers at St. John Lutheran Church,
For several years, one of the shirts that l wear as a “swim dad” has a quote from University of
Alabama football coach Bear Bryant. lt reads, “lt's not the will to win, but the willto prepare to
win." The quote is a reminder that competitive teams are not just handed their trophies.
Instead, these ‘teams must tirelessly practice, practice, practice. They must be disciplined.
Of course, not just athletes require discipline. To be an employee, or an artist, or a student
also takes commitment, dedication, and responsibility; ,in a word: discipline. When the
members of St. John paid off‘ their building loan, that too called for discipline. indeed, a
person’s spiritual life takes discipline. Being a follower of Jesus Christ is a discipline. That is
why we call those who follow Jesus his disciples.
William Willimon, theologian and a bishop in the United Methodist Church, once wrote about
the journey of discipleship. He lifted up the importance of regular Bible study, daily prayer, and
the discipline of Sunday worship. Yes, for Willimon, just getting out of bed, dressing yourself,
and coming to church is an important discipline.
Martin Luther would want us to be clear that our spiritual disciplines are not works that we
perform to make God’s team-or get the job of being Jesus’ disciples. We confess that we
become disciples solely by God's grace in the waters of Baptism. At the same time, we must
not forget that ourspiritual disciplines are an integral part of being members of the body of
Christ and citizens ofthe reign of God.
l must admit that discipline is not a topic over which l go gaga. Discipline to me sounds
monotonous, boring, and difficult. it means that l am not setting my own schedule, nor am i
doing things that I want todo. Discipline means that I belong to someone else. And yet, the
truth is l do belong to someone else; Jesus’ word to all of us is that as we lose our life for the
sake of the good news, we will continue to find new life in him.
Peace be with you,
Pastor Tom Wehrman

Fellow Ministers at St. John Lutheran Church,


For several years, one of the shirts that l wear as a “swim dad” has a quote from University of Alabama football coach Bear Bryant. lt reads, “lt's not the will to win, but the will to prepare to win." The quote is a reminder that competitive teams are not just handed their trophies. Instead, these teams must tirelessly practice, practice, practice. They must be disciplined.


Of course, not just athletes require discipline. To be an employee, or an artist, or a student also takes commitment, dedication, and responsibility; in a word: discipline. When the members of St. John paid off their building loan, that too called for discipline. Indeed, a person’s spiritual life takes discipline. Being a follower of Jesus Christ is a discipline. That is why we call those who follow Jesus his disciples.

William Willimon, theologian and a bishop in the United Methodist Church, once wrote about the journey of discipleship. He lifted up the importance of regular Bible study, daily prayer, and the discipline of Sunday worship. Yes, for Willimon, just getting out of bed, dressing yourself, and coming to church is an important discipline.


Martin Luther would want us to be clear that our spiritual disciplines are not works that we perform to make God’s team-or get the job of being Jesus’ disciples. We confess that we become disciples solely by God's grace in the waters of Baptism. At the same time, we must not forget that our spiritual disciplines are an integral part of being members of the body of Christ and citizens of the reign of God.


l must admit that discipline is not a topic over which l go gaga. Discipline to me sounds monotonous, boring, and difficult. It means that l am not setting my own schedule, nor am I doing things that I want to do. Discipline means that I belong to someone else. And yet, the truth is l do belong to someone else; Jesus’ word to all of us is that as we lose our life for the sake of the good news, we will continue to find new life in him.


Peace be with you,


Pastor Tom Wehrman

Last Updated on Friday, 27 September 2019 21:53  

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