THE WORD SHAPES US
July 12, 2020
The Fifth Sunday after Pentecost
It is hard to separate one’s own bias from the truth. It is also hard to be totally objective. When we read God’s Word, we must always struggle to put aside what we think we know, allowing God to change and mold our hearts, our minds, and our faith according to His Word alone.
IN OUR PRAYERS
Cheryl Barksdale, Katie Koontz, Dorothy Levihn, Virginia Jones, Tee Lipsey, Brandi Matthews, and John Widau. For all who mourn. For all missionaries including Pastor Sam Ruiz of Luterano Indy. For all who are imprisoned. For all persecuted Christians throughout the world. For our active military, including Corey Cook, Jr., Dominick Greci, Katelyn Harvey, Dylan Pliska-Lyndoe and Rex Rafferty.
VBS online event, Jul. 13, 20, 6:00 pm
OSLS faculty and staff blessing, Aug. 2, 10:30 am
OSLS first day of school, Aug. 10
Confirmation Sunday, Aug. 16
WORSHIP PRACTICES—As we return to our pre-COVID19 worship schedule, we want you to know what to expect in worship. While most of our worship will look the same as it did prior to our closure, we will continue some measures to promote healthy behaviors and safe social distancing. Please take notice of what will stay the same and what will be different.
Staying the same: Full worship service with children’s message and communion; communion distribution, as a family, at the chancel steps; seating returned to normal arrangement; printed bulletins; hymnals are available.
What’s changed since COVID19-Encourage safe social distancing; no sharing of the peace; worshippers will sit in every other row; floors marked to assist with social distancing during communion; children remain seated with families for children’s message; offering collected at the rear of the nave; attendance kept via attendance cards deposited in offering plate; fewer worship volunteers; in a few weeks, coffee will be available in narthex; no donuts between services; a single adult Sunday School class- a deeper dive into the readings for the week.
ANNOUNCEMENTS—Have an event or message that you’d like to share with our church family? Email details including proposed verbiage, requested dates, and modes of communication to by noon on Wednesday to be considered for inclusion in announcements for the weekend. An acknowledgement of your request will be returned within three business days of receipt. Actual modes and dates of distribution will be communicated once a decision has been made.
VBS—Trust Jesus! Rocky Mountain Railway VBS is full steam ahead, but it’s not too late to join in the fun. Talk to a staff member about getting a take-home activity pack, visit our YouTube page for the recorded Monday music sessions, and get the whole family involved in the weekly lessons.
OSLS—Our Shepherd Lutheran School is currently looking for a child-loving, upbeat, and dependable candidate to work in extended care daily Monday-Friday from 3-6pm. This position would begin August 10th. For more details, please call the school office or email Mrs. Amy Hedges at
FIRST READING, Acts 18:1-10, 18-21
After this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. 2 And he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome. And he went to see them, 3 and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade. 4 And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and tried to persuade Jews and Greeks. 5 When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with the word, testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus. 6 And when they opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.” 7 And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a worshiper of God. His house was next door to the synagogue. 8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with his entire household. And many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized. 9 And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, “Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, 10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people.”
18 After this, Paul stayed many days longer and then took leave of the brothers and set sail for Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aquila. At Cenchreae he had cut his hair, for he was under a vow. 19 And they came to Ephesus, and he left them there, but he himself went into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. 20 When they asked him to stay for a longer period, he declined. 21 But on taking leave of them he said, “I will return to you if God wills,” and he set sail from Ephesus.
EPISTLE READING, Romans 8:12-17
12 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
GOSPEL READING, Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23
1That same day Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea. 2 And great crowds gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat down. And the whole crowd stood on the beach. 3 And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, 6 but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. 8 Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. 9 He who has ears, let him hear.”
18 “Hear then the parable of the sower: 19 When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. 20 As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, 21 yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. 22 As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”