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Thank you for checking out Weekly Word, a weekly online summary of my sermons for review during the week, catch-up after being away, or sharing with others. I am Stefan Munker. I have been serving as a pastor in congregations since 2004. In that time, I have preached quite a few sermons to convey God’s message for member’s lives. I’m excited about reaching more people online. The Weekly Word blog is based on requests for spiritual support in daily life, a desire to share biblical insights from Sunday worship, and the question how to connect more people with the church and God. It is an evolving experiment, so give it a try, keep an open mind, and share your feedback. Welcome to Weekly Word.
Recent posts

Power of Faith

Your faith doesn't need to be huge like a mountain. Faith the size of a tiny seed can accomplish great things. What are our excuses? We need more faith like the apostles? Or we don’t speak well like Moses? Or are too young like Samuel? Or are too old like Abram and Sarah? Faith might be able to move mountains, but only if you are committed to put it into action. Word The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” (v. 5) Oh, says Jesus, if you just had faith the side of a mustard seed, you could instruct a tree to uproot itself and plant itself in the sea. No, Jesus tells his followers, what they need is not more faith but the right attitude and purpose. He wants them to be messengers and servants. Connection Is it possible that too many people stop with faith confession and don’t take the next step of faith action? Can we call ourselves Christian without acting like Christ? Instead of only understanding or knowing God, you and I are called to work for God.

Give Praise

Church vocal and bell choir in worship leads the assembled congregation to give God praise. Throughout the Bible, God and humans have used music to communicate with each other and about God’s greatness. Word In the Old testament, King David instructed the worship leaders of Israel to praise God for the kind and powerful help they received: “Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done. Sing to him; yes, sing his praises. Tell everyone about his wonderful deeds. ” (2 Chronicles 16:7-9) The songbook of the Bible encourages creativity and diversity for giving glory to God with a new song. In one of its poetic hymns we are told that it is not only fitting but pleasing to God to join all creation “... with trumpets and the sound of the ram’s horn. Make a joyful symphony before the Lord, the King!” (Psalm 98:6) And the early church saw spiritual songs as an expression of their new life in Christ. The apostle Paul wrote to believ

Be ready

I love our home. But I know that Jesus has a home prepared for us in heaven. Are you ready to leave home and follow Jesus to life in God’s kingdom? Ultimately you have to trust the promises of God. It is only by faith that we experience contentment and joy even in the uncertainties and disappointments of everyday life. Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32) Even as Christians we are still attached to stuff more than letting go so we can live with God and let God’s purposes guide our life. We are only passing through this life on earth. When we live by trust in God’s promises, we can let go of worries and control. Faith is not the end of our problems. But faith gives peace through trust in God’s saving love. The Good News is: God is faithful and God’s love endures forever. God’s kingdom is ours. By faith we receive the fulfillment of God’s promise of protect

Legacy of Love

What would you like your tomb stone to say about your life? I’ve been asking myself what I want my legacy to be. I want to make a difference, not for my own pride or benefit, but for God’s purposes and glory. Like bringing people to faith, or changing social problems. But that kind of legacy idea can become overwhelming and paralyzing. What if I fail? What if it becomes self serving? Word Perhaps that’s what Peter and the disciples felt too. But their perspective was changed on Easter. The risen Christ gave them a promise and challenge. Hear Jesus words to his followers then and now in John’s gospel from today’s reading: “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.” (John 13:34) Jesus gave us a command. To love as he loved on the cross, to save all people and share life with everyone. That’s not easy. But comes from the gift of God’s love on the cross. Connection So, I don’t need an impressive

Renewing Confession

Procession of Clergy during an Ordination service. The church celebrates faith in Christ together. It is difficult for us to relate to biblical events like Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The words like Hosanna, and actions like riding on a donkey, are not exactly something we use or encounter today. Word If Jesus were to live today to tell us about God beginning to take charge of governing the world it would be all over Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. God’s representative might come riding on a bicycle instead in a limousine. And people would probably wave their cell phones to express their excitement. Followers of the new visionary leader would shout something like: ‘Hey, yo! Welcome the Boss from heaven! Get ready for some serious change!’ Connection So if it so happened that Jesus were to come through our town on the way to die and rise so we would be freed to live in God’s realm here on earth and forever in heaven, would you even notice, would you believe hi

Renewing Devotion

My wife and I showed our devotion to Jesus by packing food for starving children. 'Why give money to World Hunger when they should help themselves and there’s people to take care of your own family or church or country?’ Or, one could say, why waste expensive perfume to anoint Jesus’ feet when you could have used the money to feed the poor? That’s rational, selfish, and sarcastic Judas speaking to willfully discredit Mary. Mary however, responded with love, generosity, and extravagant devotion. Word The lectionary gospel on the Sunday before Holy Week tells of Mary sharing her devotion for Jesus. She uses expensive oil, and outrageously, her hair and tears, to express her love, her service, her faith in Jesus. While they are at dinner, “Mary took a pound of costly perfume made of pure nard, anointed Jesus’ feet, and wiped them with her hair.” (John 12:3) Guess what? Mary doesn’t care about the cost, or what other people might say. She does what feels right to her.

Renewing Joy

Playing with my nieces when they were young brought me joy. When we hear joy, we might think of Christmas, Joy to the World, excitement of presents. But not God’s gracious acceptance, forgiveness of sins, or change of life through faith each and every day. We Lutherans may know God’s grace better than anyone else but have difficulty showing it on our faces. Lent is an invitation to renew our faith through joy and show it through our daily actions. What brings you joy? How do you show it? Did you ever wonder what brings joy to God? God rejoices when we appreciate God’s gifts, love one another, and express our worship to God. Word The story of Jesus about a Father and his two sons describes numerous aspects of our relationship with God. One of them is joy. When the lost son returns, his Father runs to welcome and kiss him. And the father wants to share his joy, by giving a party for everyone, and talking to his older son who feels slighted. “The father said to him, ‘Son