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Over the years I have written several "book" or "booklets" and many, many, many newsletter and bulletin articles. Because the book market seeks writings to meet specific needs at specific times, my material has never been accepted. I have a tendency to write what is on my mind and so I am left with self publishing. So, with the encouragement from my wife and others, I am beginning this blog in order to put my "ramblings" "out there"! I hope you enjoy!

Disclaimer

Please note that while my intentions are to use good grammar, because of the way in which some of the material presented here is presented (orally) the grammar and syntax might not always be the best English. Also note that good theology is not always presented in the best English so there may be times when the proper grammar rules are purposely broken.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Blessings - Part One, Physical Blessings

Introduction
God gives and we are given to. God gives first. He is the prime mover. In the beginning God created all things out of nothing. Nothing exists that has not been made by God. Thus, even we who are His creation have been given to by Him. We have been given life at conception, new life through Holy Baptism, even eternal life earned and paid for by Him. As Dr. Martin Luther so well states in each of his explanations of the three articles of the Apostles’ Creed that God’s gives. God has created me. “He has given me my body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them. He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life. He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil.” It is Jesus “who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned person, purchased and won me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil; not with gold or silver, but with His holy, precious blood and with His innocent suffering and death,” The “Holy Spirit has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith. In the same way He calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth, and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith. In this Christian church He daily and richly forgives all my sins and the sins of all believers. On the Last Day He will raise me and all the dead, and give eternal life to me and all believers in Christ.”

The following was first presented at a regular Wednesday morning Bible Class and is presented here from what can be remembered of the presentation, which was not recorded. This presentation seeks to expound on the gifts and blessings God gives to us each and every day. Certainly we hear of the gifts and blessings our Lord gives: faith, forgiveness, life and salvation, but what does that mean? From where do these gifts come? What other gifts and blessings does our Lord bestow on us? This presentation is divided into two parts. The first part will concentrate on the physical bodily blessings our Lord gives, and the second part will focus our attention on the most important gifts and blessings, spiritual blessings.

Part One
Physical Bodily

As we said, God gives, and we are given to. God has created all things out of nothing so that all that is has been created and given to us by God to use in service to Him in His Kingdom. Certainly we understand that although in the beginning God created all things prefect and holy, because of man’s sin, we now live in a world that is under the curse of that sin so now all things are not perfect, but are imperfect. Yet, all things have their origin in God.
 
God gives. God gives life at conception. Along with life God gives us all our senses: hearing, taste, touch, sight, smell. God gives us a house and a home as well as clothing and shoes, meat and drink, wife and children and all that we have, all that we need to support our body and life. God even gives us each our vocations, that is those roles in life through which we serve Him by serving others, such as husband or wife, mother or father, carpenter or miner, banker or lawyer, doctor or plumber. All these vocations are given by God as He gives each of us gifts, talents and abilities to perform the various works of service in each vocation.
 
Now, let us focus in on one physical item from God, that of food and in particular the food of oatmeal. From where does oatmeal come, other than off our pantry shelf. Normally we purchase our oatmeal form the grocery store. But, what does it take for the grocery store to have oatmeal on the shelf. The “flow chart” here presented helps us to understand all the complexity and all the gifts God gives in order for us to purchase oatmeal and have it on our pantry shelf so that we might be able to have a meal of oatmeal.
 
In order for a Grocery Store to function properly it must have an owner who must hire workers who stock the shelves as well as sell the items and keep the store clean and running.
 
In order to stock the store there needs to be trucks which deliverer the good to the store from the warehouse which must also have a staff of employees to make sure the warehouse is properly stock to fill the orders from the stores.
 
The warehouse gets its goods from the factory which produces the products it sends to the warehouse to be distributed to the stores to be sold to the consumer. The factory must have a staff of workers as well as the right equipment and packaging to produce and package the product. The equipment must be built and maintained in order for the factory to function properly, and the packaging must be available to appropriately distribute the product. Both the equipment and the packaging call for their own set of subroutines to function properly. And the factory must have workers to run the equipment.
 
The factory needs raw materials and in the case of oatmeal, the factory must purchase the oats it uses to make oatmeal from the farmer. The farmer must have good seed to plant as well as fertilizer and other farm equipment, workers, water and so forth to grow a good crop of oats. Ultimately the farmer depends on God for good weather and a good growing season in order to produce a good crop of grain.
 
Indeed the Lord blesses us with oatmeal and all we need through the labor and vocations, the gifts, talents and abilities of many workers, and yet we see it all begins and ends with the Lord.

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