Serving with Luther

Serving with Luther

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  Colossians 3:17

As a young pastor, a man came into meet with me because “he needed to talk.”  I was prepared for a discussion of some sort of personal or family hardship.  However, I was refreshed when he said, “I want to serve God, but I don’t know how.”  He, then, began talking about how unrewarding he found his job and that it left him feeling as if his life had no purpose.  I opened up the Small Catechism and proceeded to talk about his vocation as a Christian, then as a husband and a father.  He actively served in his congregation and community.  The Table of Duties helped this child of God and countless other Christians to see that one does not have to become a missionary or a monk to serve God, but to see the callings within the home, church, and world, as means of serving God, as well as work.

Martin Luther’s theological legacy includes His emphasis on justification by grace through faith in Christ and the Scriptures being the basis for all teaching.  However, Luther’s doctrine of vocation is among the most practical aspects of his teaching.  This teaching is a great blessing as it can inform the varied forms of service of Christians in their daily lives.  Every confirmand, every engaged couple, expectant parents, and every young person entering the work force benefits from being taught how God works through them in their daily callings.  Serving God is not something reserved for “church workers,” but part of each person’s life in the world and relationships given by God.

If you want to serve God, you do not need to go on a mission trip or wait until next year’s SHINE! event.  You are blessed to serve with Luther in your home, in your congregation, in your community, and in your work.  May Luther’s doctrine of vocation guide and bless you in your daily service.  If you would like to learn more about Luther’s doctrine of vocation, ask your pastor where to start or pick up a copy of Luther on Vocation by Gustaf Wingren or God at Work by Gene Edward Veith.  May God bless you as you serve in your various callings!

Prayer – Heavenly Father, grant Your mercy and grace to Your people in their many and various callings.  Give them patience, and strengthen them in their Christian of vocation of witness to the world and of service to their neighbor in Christ’s name; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.  Amen.

Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan

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