November 17 - 23, 2003  




Our Season of Happiness(!?)


Can you believe next week is Thanksgiving? So begins the annual six-week ride on the tilt-a-wheel of life known as the holidays, which many people say is their happiest time of the year. But for many of us, it's also a time of stress, of rushing around madly, of overindulgence, of running up our credit card bills and of working like mad to keep the house: 1) decorated, 2) clean, 3) sane. Yet there is happiness, too!?


What is it that makes you happy? What makes anyone happy? Check out this week's  Gleanings for a lot of fun answers from a lot of different sources and perspectives. Among them:

The collective findings show that once your basic needs are met, money and possessions can make us happy only to a point. The real sources of happiness are fulfillment in relationships, work, recreation, time to just be.


Good lessons to keep in mind for the holidays.


Rob Blezard, Webmaster




New This Week, Nov. 17 - 23



Sermon. Saints are saints - not from the absence of dirt, but by being basked in the righteousness of Christ.
"Isnít that the way Godís kingdom of grace always works?  It is always a masquerade.  We are saints, not because we do everything right, but because in our baptism we put on Ė not a mask, but the garments of our Lord.  His life, death and resurrection now define who we are." By Pastor Phil Heinze, assistant to the bishop, Eastern Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.



Ask God -- the Answer May Surprise You
I have decided not to think that I know the mind of God.  One of the greatest gifts God has already given me is God's son who taught us to pray for the things that we need.  And then I will let God do the answering.
In Dana Reardon's weekly reflection



Stewardship by Example: A Brief Bible Study.
"Every one of us, from pastors to laity, are examples of stewardship to others. What kind of example do our lives give as we live out that God has blessed our lives? He has blessed them to be a blessing for others." From the North Carolina Synod, written by Pastor Tom Cogan, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Charlotte, NC.



How Do You Use Your Power?
"Our thoughts and actions generate a great deal of power that we are to control. As you observe forms of power out of control, let it remind you of the power of God's grace that you have -- the power of the cross -- at your fingertips."   StewardLife from the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod 



Article - Shielding our little consumers. How many shopping days until Christmas? With a little more than a month away, advertisements are in full swing to capture the imaginations of our children. Good time to look at this article, which talks about effect of advertising on kids -- and the informative sidebar how to counter it. From The Lutheran magazine, the monthly publication of the ELCA.