"But because of His great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy,
made us alive with (Jesus) Christ even when we were dead in
transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved."
(Ephesians 2:4-5)

Archive for the ‘Pastor’s Corner’ Category

New Sermon Series: Galatians

Wednesday, April 4th, 2018

When outsiders look in at the church, they often view Christians as people of “The Law.” They the fire-and-brimstone preacher on Polyanna, all that we have are more laws, rules, and regulations to give people. But is that true? Is Christianity primarily a rule-based faith, or is there something else that characterizes our belief system?

Check out the video below to find out more about our newest sermon series on the book of Galatians. Starts 4/15/2018.

If you’re in the Princeton area, you’re always welcome. Come join us!

A Christmas Message

Sunday, December 17th, 2017

Here is a hope-filled message from all of your friends at Bunker Hill Lutheran Church. May your days be filled with joy this Christmas season as we expectantly celebrate the birth of Jesus!

Embodied Worship

Sunday, February 19th, 2017

Psalm 103 says “Bless the Lord all my soul and all that is in within me. Praise His holy name.”  With Lent fast approaching, we will focus on questions like “What is worship? and “What does it look like from a Biblical standpoint? “

Click on the image above to view a promo video for this new sermon series: Embodied Worship.

Series begins March 5, 2017.  We hope to see you there!

 

2017 Here We Come

Friday, January 13th, 2017

Redeem the Time Church Stock Photos

2016 has been a whirlwind of a year. I graduated from seminary, moved to New Jersey, and began serving as Pastor here at Bunker Hill. While there have been a number of challenges both for myself and Bethannie, we have felt incredibly blessed by the selfless hospitality of our church family. Everyone has really taken us in and made us feel like one of their own. We’ve been introduced to “the Shore,” jug-handle left turns, and aggressive driving—which does not come naturally for this small-town, Midwestern couple! Through everything though, we continually thank God for His faithfulness in providing such a strong, supportive group of people that continually lift us up in prayer, provides me with an ample supply of Gluten-free waffles, and invites us into the intimacy of their homes for cookie bakes.

Reflecting back on how deliberately people have reached out to us, I cannot help but be reminded of the Bible’s emphasis on community and relationship-building. Right from the very beginning, in Genesis 2:18, God says that “it is not good for man to be alone.” While I’ve always thought about this verse strictly within the context of marriage, it also speaks to the importance of relationships in general. While Adam enjoyed a perfect relationship with God in the Garden of Eden, God still said that it was “not good” for him to be alone—even though, in the strict sense of the word, he wasn’t truly alone. But he did need another human being. We need each other. There is something incredibly life-giving about that intimate connection with other human beings. It always used to puzzle me why five minutes of deep conversation with a close friend could bring as much comfort to my soul as time spent in the Scriptures. But not anymore. As the hands and feet of Christ, we “enflesh” the Gospel, and we become the living, breathing body which reaches beyond itself to minister to the needs of others. It’s through those relationships with one another that the love of Christ gets spread, and—as much as we’d like to imagine that we can do things on our own—we desperately need one another for love, support, and mutual encouragement. We can’t do this on our own, and it is such a blessing to know that we can always turn to our brothers and sisters in Christ and know that we are all in this together.

I thought it would be fun to give you a heads-up on a couple of things to look forward to in the new year as well. Get ready for a new sermon series or two in 2017. Lent starts on March 5th, and during this time we’ll be going through a series entitled “Embodied Worship,” looking at how God calls each part of our bodies to be actively engaged in worshiping Him. After Lent, we’re probably going to be diving deep into one of the Epistles. I don’t want to give too much away since the details are still up in the air, but I will tell you the that it rhymes with REE-fee-sians (good luck with that). Finally, look for AMPLIFY Bible Study to kick into gear again, probably later in February or March. Last time we looked at Jonah, but this time we’re going to do a book study—likely focusing on what it means to be “the church” in today’s postmodern culture.

I’m excited. Are you? 2017, I hope you’re ready for us!

Top 10 Book Recommendations

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

books

1. You Are What You Love by James K.A. Smith

“Our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” Using this quote from St. Augustine as a foundation, James Smith builds the case that it is our hearts rather than our heads that reveal what we truly love. This book is a fascinating look into the extent to which culture forms and shapes these loves, and how our loves need to be re-oriented toward God.

2. The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller

This is hands-down one of the best books on marriage I’ve ever read. Keller goes to great lengths to formulate a Biblical definition of marriage–over and against the world’s definition. If you’re looking to strengthen and grow your relationship with your spouse, look no further.

3. The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz

Although this novel was originally written in 1941, it is as fresh today as it was then. The author tells his story from the perspective of a number of pastors who served in rural Sweden over span of the 18th and 19th centuries, and it digs deep into matters of faith.

4. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

This might be my favorite novel. Set in late 19th century Russia, Anna Karenina tells the tragic tale of love lost, and its rich tapestry of complex, multi-layered characters will not leave you wanting. Don’t let the 976-page length scare you away. This one is well worth the read!

5. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

This one goes without saying, but I thought I would throw it out there for those who haven’t read it. Anything by Lewis is worth its weight in gold–that’s only a slight exaggeration. In this book, he examines faith at its most basic level, arguing that it makes more sense to believe than not to believe. Lewis has a way of saying in a single sentence what it takes other theologians volumes to articulate, and his elegant yet simple prose still hits me anew each time I read it.

6. Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas by Various Authors

Looking for an Advent devotional? This is the one you’re going to want to pick up. It’s a compilation of writings by a wide array of authors across both faith and time spans, and includes writings by such figures as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, T.S. Elliot, C.S. Lewis, Dorothy Day, and Madeleine L’Engle, just to name a few.

7. In the Name of Jesus by Henry Nouwen

Nouwen is an ordained Catholic priest who also served for a number of years as a chaplain. His heartfelt, hope-filled illustrations from his own experience show that we can best minister to the wounded out of our own sense of woundedness. Humility rather than power must be at the heart of our ministry.

8. A Severe Mercy by Sheldon Vanauken

In this book, the author recounts he and his wife’s unlikely friendship with C.S. Lewis, and how this great man helped guide them through the joys and trials of marriage. Tragic yet beautiful, Sheldon describes how he came to experience God’s deepest mercies in the midst of incredible pain. My wife and I read this book as part of our pre-marriage counseling, and we were both deeply moved.

9.  The Freedom of the Christian by Martin Luther

Have you ever wondered what the place of “good works” are in the life of the believer? Why do we do them if they are not meritorious? Luther opens up the Scriptures to show that good works are the natural fruit borne of those rooted in Christ, and that they are done not from compulsion, but out of our newfound freedom in the Gospel. This little “pamphlet” is an incredibly clear and eye-opening introduction to this topic.

10. Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the God of Rest by Edward T. Welch

Have you ever felt anxious or afraid? Then this is the book for you. The author digs into Scripture to get at the root cause of our fears, showing that all worry springs from a mistrust in God. But Welch then goes on to show that the God who provided for us yesterday promises to provide for us today as well. I first read this book during a time of struggle, and have found it to be an immense comfort.