Association of Lutheran Resource Centers

Blog home for the Association of Lutheran Resource Centers (ALRC).

Mistaken Identity!

Posted on February 25, 2011 by Karen Harthan

Have you ever had someone think you were someone else?  “Oh, I’m sorry”, they say as they let go or look away, “I thought you were someone else”.  You might think, “I wonder who I remind them of?” and go on your way.  But I would like to propose to you that spiritually speaking, our goal should be a case of Mistaken Identity!  There are numerous ways the Bible presents the idea of spiritual growth.  We are to walk or live in the power of the Spirit.  We are to produce fruit of the Spirit.  We are to be holy, faithful, and true.  We are to be spiritually minded that we would live according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh.  We are to know the Word that we may resist sin and walk with the Lord in obedience.  We are to love for we have learned how to love from God who has loved us first.  In every single one of these, they can also be stated that we are to be more like Christ.  That Christlikeness is our goal.  To develop these qualities in our lives and take advantage of all the spiritual riches we have at our disposal we merely need to look to our local Resource Center.   Define your Christian ID with studies like one of these:

Faith in Motion: Keepin’ It Real: Christian Life in a Pop Culture World, A seven-session study to help youth maintain their Christian identity even as they live in a “pop culture world.” 

Faith 4 Life:  Your Christian ID  Who am I?  What’s my purpose?  Do I really matter?  These questions echo in all of our minds.  Help teenagers to discover that their true self-worth can only be found in one place:  their relationship with God.

Portraits of Jesus: A Nine-Session Bible Study on the I Am Statements of Christ.  Jesus often used the phrase “I am” to say something about his identity.  In the titles he applied to himself, Christ painted in word pictures his own self-portrait.  The nine portraits found in this study serve as beautiful vignettes and character sketches of the Lord Jesus, using images from the pastoral scenes of ancient Palestine.

Christ the Fulfillment (Matthew) A comprehensive and continuous study of Scripture to inform one’s Christian faith and discipleship in daily life.

1. A son is born; 2. An unexpected sign; 3. A unique birth; 4. Searching for a child;

5. Declaring identity; 6. Facing temptation; 7. Works of healing; 8. Inviting the weary;

9. Overcoming rejection; 10. Hope for healing; 11. Declaring allegiance; 12. Mountaintop experiences; 13. Extravagant love.

The Lutheran Magazine, Oct. 2010, Vol. 23, No. 10 – Cover Story – If you’re Like Me – Consider Embracing ‘Lifestyle Simplicity’ as a core identity and set of behaviors.

Contact your local Resource Center for suggestions on resources to help you and your congregation shape and form your Christian Identity, may you be mistaken for Christ!

Six meals and some placemats

Posted on February 18, 2011 by Catherine Fink

image of plate with rice in shapes of the continentsDoes your congregation offer meals before Lenten mid-week worship services? This year, why not consider fighting hunger and learning about the world at the same time? ELCA World Hunger resources are available free and include complete plans for six differently-themed Lenten meals. Use all six or just one!

Additionally, placemats are available to raise awareness about hunger, poverty, and related issues.

Use this opportunity to gather donations for ELCA World Hunger and your community’s local food bank. What an impact, both globally and locally, your congregation could make!

“I am about to do a new thing…”

Posted on February 10, 2011 by Karen Matthias-Long

I am about to do a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert. Isaiah 43:19

Have you ever experienced a time when different threads in your life converged and suddenly you saw some amazing connections between them? It happens to me sometimes – and when it does, I get goosebumps.

Make that God-bumps!

I’m in the middle of this kind of convergence of threads now – Something new is happening ~

Here are the threads that are coming together for me at the moment: A Renewal Enterprise, Unbinding the Gospel, God Sightings in the Northeastern PA Synod, and Going GLOCAL. For me – all of these things are about telling our stories; being particularly watchful for God’s movement in our lives, churches, schools, and communities; and, discerning where God is calling us.

THREAD #1: A Renewal Enterprise

Our synod has asked the folks from A Renewal Enterprise (ARE) to walk with us for the next year or two. They are helping us to focus on

On Sorrow and Loss

Posted on February 3, 2011 by Julie Aageson

On Sorrow and Loss

Following the theme of the last blog, I’d like to recommend another resource on prayer that continues to be a deep source of comfort.  Turn My Heart by Susan Briehl and Marty Haugen is a collection of texts and poems, litanies and hymns written and collected in the wake of 9-11.  Accompanied by a music CD of hauntingly beautiful hymns, it focuses on the journey of grief.

As I’ve used this resource…