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12/31/2023 Weekly article

The Light of Christ Shines for all the World

“Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him” (Matthew 2:2).

Are you a star gazer? During our family reunion this summer, we sat outside miles away from any city lights and saw the Milky Way and several meteors falling from the sky. Amazing! The wise men observed the stars and knew His star had risen in the sky and the King had been born. They traveled miles and months to worship the King. This week we celebrate Epiphany, the Gentile’s Christmas. Stars shine for all to see – Christ came for the saving of all mankind.

No Stranger in the Manger is a four-session Bible study available on the LWML website. From this study, you will gain insights into the magi and the importance of worshiping Jesus the King. I strongly encourage you to take the time to use this study. Stars might not always be visible. The light of Christ is always visible and it shines for all the world. Even more amazing! Enjoy Epiphany each and every day.

Arlene Naasz

12/24/2023 Weekly article

Be Still

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth
(Psalm 46:10).

The rush is on! Is everything just so for Christmas? Did I get something for everyone on my list? Is the meal going to taste good? Will the family appreciate what I have put together?

Christmas is such a wondrous, joyous time. Yet it also proves to be hectic – and headache filled – as we focus so much on the details. Details that, at times, take the mind off of the Christ who has come to bring to us such a wondrous, awe-filled gift.

LWML in its resources has numerous studies, both individual and multi-session ones, to bring the focus back to Christ in the midst of the hectic days. Just type “Christmas” in the search bar and find a resource that might give you a moment to “Be still” and recall why you are gathering together as family. You are here because Christ has come to you.

So, take a moment, grab that cup of coffee or hot chocolate, sit down on the couch. and reflect with an LWML study and breathe. God has come to you. Merry Christmas!

“Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).

Rev. Mark Maas

12/17/2023 Weekly article

Why Christmas?

You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins (Matthew 1:21).

So, why do we celebrate Christmas? After all, Easter is way more important, isn’t it? Well, we could say yes and no. We could even say that Good Friday is above them all, yes? If one would back up just a bit, it all goes back to God Himself, who He is and what He did. It started in eternity with God and His love, a love that designed what was necessary to fix what man had messed up. That design included all three of these events so that salvation is completed. The design took Jesus becoming a human, for us, living the perfect life, for us, giving His life, for us and for the payment for our sin, and coming back to life to prove that our sins are forgiven. Because of all that, we have life that will never end. So, yes, we celebrate Christmas because that’s where the human Jesus started His substitutionary actions for us. Merry Christmas!

Rev. Gary Piepkorn

12/10/2023 Weekly article

Hark the Glad Sound!

Hark the glad sound! The Savior comes, the Savior promised long; Let every heart prepare a throne and every voice a song (LSB #349).

Ah, Advent! A great time of expectation, reflection, and preparation to celebrate our Savior’s birth. Not to mention great hymns! This time of year, it is easy to become focused on all the preparations and craziness of counting down to Christmas and forget the true meaning of the Advent season.

Advent is the beginning of our liturgical year; it is a time to reflect on not only the birth of Christ but on his long awaited second coming. It is also a time to repent and believe.

To prepare our hearts for Christmas, I urge you to visit the LWML website ( and type in “Advent Resources” in the search block. There you will find many devotions, short Bible studies, litanies, sketches, crafts, and mission service activities to help you focus on Advent and “prepare the way of the Lord” for Christmas too.

A voice cries; “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord;…” (Isaiah 40:3).

Anita Werner

12/3/2023 Weekly article

Getting Ready

Advent is here and excitement mounts for the coming of the celebration of Christmas. I have wondered what it would be like to have a Christmas with no gifts, trees, cookies, etc. We could just focus on the coming of the Lord and make our Advent a royal and peaceful celebration of Jesus’ coming. We could light the Advent wreath and sing or read the words of the songs of Advent in Lutheran Worship.

A few years ago, I had one of my many nativities out and the one under the tree captured a grandson’s eye. He proceeded to move all the figures around the manger. This child understood that the focus is on Jesus. When he was finished, he smiled and said, “Grandma, now it is right!”

In the season of Advent the LWML has beautiful devotions, free and printable for your use. I suggest you begin with Time Out.

Karol Selle

11/26/2023 Weekly article

A Time of Preparation

With Thanksgiving over and Christmas just around the corner, are you already feeling stressed and overwhelmed? We spend so much time and energy decorating, planning, and choosing gifts and too little time preparing our hearts and minds for the coming of the Christ Child. Our perfect Christmas gift comes from God, not any store.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your doing; it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8).

I stay focused on Jesus during the Advent season by attending mid-week services and our annual LWML Christmas luncheon which includes a devotion and carol singing. This year I am leading an “Advent by Candlelight” event. Gathering with others helps me to reset and refocus. The LWML has many Advent and Christmas resources including devotions, Bible studies, responsive readings, litanies, programs, and coloring pages. Many of the LWML devotions have audio versions. These and many other resources are on the LWML website at

As we prepare for Christmas, I encourage you to stay focused on Jesus.

Debbie Yocky

11/12/2023 Weekly article

Good. Grief.

Let your steadfast love comfort me according to your promise to your servant (Psalm 119:76).

Grief. All of us have experienced sadness and mourning at some level—whether it be the death of a distant relative, a friend or neighbor, or a close family member. We do not understand accidents that cause the death of a young person, cancer or chronic diseases that ravage a body for years, or the silent grief of a miscarriage or stillbirth. “Why, Lord?, “Good Grief = Relief”, “When the heart is torn, the Lord heals”, and “Grief Hurts” are a sampling of the insightful resources available on the LWML website that explore God’s Word to bring His peace and comfort to us. Lutheran Women in Mission has published a new book, Life After… Devotions for Widows, which leads widows and those who love them to feel God’s deep love and faithfulness for His children.

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all (2 Thessalonians 3:16).

Brenda Piester


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