Leadership Thoughts from Rev. Daniel May

On Thursday and Friday, Lutherans will gather from throughout Indiana and northern Kentucky at the Grand Wayne Center to prayerfully consider our work together. As we do every three years, we will share ministry reports, elect leaders, and vote on important matters. Clergy and lay delegates will represent every congregation in our District. The theme for…
School is out, graduations are done and summer plans are on everyone’s agenda!  This is a great time for students as they celebrate the achievements of the academic year and anticipate a summer of different activities such as sports, camps, 4H, fun in the sun and family vacations.  They may also be thinking about plans…
Memorial Day meant the Indy 500 on radio when I was a kid.  However prior to the race we always visited the cemetery in Mishawaka!  It was a big deal for my Dad because he was an orphan.  So, we would visit the graves of grandparents we did not know and plant our geraniums. We…
“…be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.” Rev. 2:10 There are various dates for congregations to confirm their youth!  In the past, many were confirmed on Palm Sunday and received their first Communion on Maundy Thursday.  As tradition and practices changed some moved confirmation to Pentecost Sunday.  It…
When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.  Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.  All of…
Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”  He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.  But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on…
OK there is your baptism day, your wedding day and then your CALL DAY!  This is an exciting time for church worker students as they graduate and receive their first calls.  The study, the waiting, the guessing and the hoping are about to end.  When you receive your first call life changes – in a…
Consider the plans and future God has for you!  It all began at the Baptismal font and it is firmly in place because of the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ!  God’s plan, future and hope for you is with the Father in heaven.  Between now and then we all are called to serve…
Ask “Doubting Thomas”! The power, joy and victory of Easter takes a while to sink in!  I had a parishioner who always anticipated this Sunday and the Gospel lesson for this Sunday:  As you would guess his name is Thomas.  My pastor is named Thomas, my brother is named Thomas and I have a grandson…
The absolute and eternal victory of Easter is our personal joy and our church celebration! “For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been…
Palmarum was this past Sunday as we began Holy Week!  Tomorrow is Maundy Thursday and then Good Friday, Holy Sunday and Easter!   You may be checking this out on Easter Monday or maybe you have everything done and written for the next four days! You are all in my prayers as you lead your people…
THIS past week we held our spring Board of Directors Meeting!  All BOD meetings are important and this one was no exception!  We considered our Ministry Budget Plan for 2018-2019 (Remember we operate on a fiscal year beginning April 1 – Easter this year).  The Ministry Budget Plan is always a bit tricky as it…
The Easter Parade is Coming Soon! Yes, there’s still more than a week of Lent. We look forward to Palm Sunday and Holy week and our Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services.  All of these are vital to our spiritual journey towards Easter. We all wish that all of our members — and those outside…
T.J. Mattick We are pleased to announce that Thomas “T.J.” Mattick has joined the Indiana District and LCEF as District Vice President Indiana. T.J., his wife Tomi, and two daughters, Lila and Elin, live in Avon, Indiana, and have been members of Our Shepherd Lutheran Church since 2009. Lila and Elin attend school at Our…
 Aruba, Jamaica ooo I wanna take you To Bermuda, Bahama come on pretty mama Key Largo, Montego baby why don’t we go Down to Kokomo We’ll get there fast And then we’ll take it slow That’s where we wanna go Way down to Kokomo SUNDAY,  FEBRUARY 18, WAS KOKOMO –INDIANA  – Lutheran Church of Our…
The Church is the “Bride of Christ” of course, but it was my privilege to spend time with the brides of many our pastors in Greencastle, IN at the Katie Retreat for Pastors wives!  Time was spent in Bible study, worship, fellowship and “crafty” projects!  It was throughly enjoyable and a blessing to so many…
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son,..” On this Ash Wednesday we know that those of us who are of a more liturgical mind will place that over Valentine’s Day and that many of our members will have the reverse perception!  So, we have an ash cross on our heads…
It’s no surprise that the oldest continually operating school in Indiana is a Lutheran school. Lutherans’ commitment to education is deeply rooted in our understanding of schools as an extension of church ministry. In our Lutheran schools, students learn more than their peers in secular schools. They gain knowledge about the world we share — and they learn about…
One of the blessings I enjoy is meeting a host of volunteer people serving in a variety of leadership roles in our many congregations.  When you get right down to it most of the church is made up of these volunteers! The Body of Christ includes young and old from the whole range of humanity.…
No time not to pray! Christians enjoy praying!  It is one of those wonderful privileges that God has given to us!  We are invited to “call upon Him in time of trouble and to pray, praise and give thanks” without ceasing!                        Pray continually, 1Th_5:17 Our prayer life is our personal life-line to the ONE…
“When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi.” Matt. 2:16 We may or may not do much…
  “How then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?”  Rom_10:14   Why is it so hard to talk about Jesus?  Why do we hesitate sharing what we believe, teach and confess?  It can be hard and…
President Dan May reflects on his father’s orphan experience, and the faith that saw him through all trials When everything else fails or falls away, the church can become a powerful, strengthening force. Perhaps no one knew this fact better than Henry May, father of LCMS Indiana District president Dan May. Orphaned at age seven,…
“Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them. Happy Epiphany!  Epiphany began last Sunday and will last until the beginning of Lent (Feb 14).  This…
In days gone by most congregations had a worship service on New Year’s Day to remember the Naming of Jesus!  We would sing the Song of Simeon no matter the day of the week for the New Year.  This year New Year’s Eve falls on Sunday!  It is a great opportunity to remember the Circumcision…
It’s still Christmas even though most of the world is cranking up for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. How about you?  Is Christmas kind of over for you?  Have you put most of your Christmas stuff away so that you are ready to “get back to normal” as we begin a new year?…
Five more days and we will all celebrate the incarnation!  Our churches will be full for the High Feast of Christmas!  Joyful songs will fill our sanctuary and even those with less than perfect voices will sing praises to God!  It is a happy time for those who know the GIFT of the Christ Child!…
God loves us because God IS love!  I Corinthians presents the triad of “FAITH, HOPE AND LOVE” reminding us that love is the greatest of these three.  Faith and hope are for this life, but love is forever.  During Advent we celebrate God’s love in the promised Savior and that love is permanent – that…
Do you ever feel hopeless?  Hopelessness in earthly matters is very common. Sometimes my favorite team is hopelessly behind.  A minute to go and down by three touchdowns, 30 seconds and the other team has the ball and we are trailing by 10 points.  These are hopeless moments and none of us likes them. On…
Do you have your Advent stuff out?  Advent wreath/candles/Advent calendar/Advent Devotions?  For some people it is hard to work Advent into Advent!  For a lot of people Advent is the quick run up to Christmas and it gets lost in the shuffle of all that goes on these weeks. That’s really too bad because Advent…
Each November, we Americans set aside a special day to give thanks to God. We thank Him for protecting the Pilgrims, the first religious refugees to land on American soil. We thank Him for the kindness of strangers, including the First Americans who helped the Pilgrims survive. And we thank Him for the abundant blessings…
Our family really enjoys Thanksgiving Day!  On this national holiday we like being together for worship, a great meal and lots of fun.  Our farm heritage means we see this as a time of giving thanks for the harvest (although none of us farm presently) and for the gifts that we have received from God’s…
“For thus says the LORD: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place.  For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future…
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Rom 13:1  This Saturday is Armistice Day!  Armistice Day is remembered each year on 11 November!  On this day the armistice was signed between the Allies of World War…
“And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.’…
As God through His Word launched Luther on to the public stage Luther brought the message of the Gospel to the everyday person, to church bureaucrats, the classroom and of course to many pulpits! In so doing a tidal wave swept much of the world as Luther challenged the faulty theology of the church and…
Katie was really something!  Katie Luther would never have imagined being on Facebook, having books written about her, her own CPH Bobblehead doll or having a retreat named after her (Indiana District Pastors’ Wives Retreat is called the “Katie Retreat.”) There are excellent books written about this historic lady (See Katie My Rib) who was…
 It is still about Jesus and it always will be about Jesus!  Martin Luther’s preaching, teaching, living and worship were dramatically changed when he understood, “…God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ–by grace…
When we count our blessings and thank God for His blessings we should have our spouse high – very high on our list!  No one in the Indiana District would question the fact that President May is extremely blessed to have Judy as his wife!  I know and I agree! It is not good for…
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She…
For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ.  For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body–Jews or Greeks, slaves or free–and all were made to drink of one Spirit.  For the body…
You may have missed September 9th, but this article is worth reading! Evangelist Alveda King: Remembering the Pain of Abortion and the Loss of Our Children in the Wake of 9/11 Memorial “Don’t you see that children are GOD ’s best gift? the fruit of the womb his generous legacy? Like a warrior’s fistful of…
Where is it that people of all ages, nationalities, income levels can really be together in harmony?  That’s right – in Church!  We gather around Word and Sacrament to celebrate God’s love for us in Jesus Christ!  It’s great and quite unique these days.  You may remember a book from 20 years ago – Robert…
This morning, President Daniel May sent this letter to the churches of the Indiana District. Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 Jn 3:18 The pictures and news accounts of the devastation brought on by Hurricane Harvey are disheartening. We can only imagine the suffering…
What does work mean to you?  Growing up on a farm with a strong work-ethic provided a definition of “work” that seemed to always mean “sweat”!  “If you haven’t worked up a sweat you haven’t been working very hard!”  Working by the “sweat of your brow” meant real physical sweat!  “Hard work never hurt anyone!”…
God is the Alpha and Omega – timeless and eternal!  We on the other hand are all about time – governed by time, run by the clock and are clearly temporal when it comes to our everyday lives. But what about church workers?  While we work in the church our work does not always fit…
As we read from Exodus 36 we might marvel at the outpouring of generosity that Moses was experiencing when building the new sanctuary: “So Moses gave command, and word was proclaimed throughout the camp, “Let no man or woman do anything more for the contribution for the sanctuary.” So the people were restrained from bringing,…
This letter was sent from President Dan May to the pastors of the District on August 9, 2017. Dear Brothers, Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the author and finisher of our faith. It is indeed a joy to serve our District alongside you, especially now as we look forward…
(From Focus on the Family) The LCMS is looking at significant retirements in the next few years.  The following article provides some helpful hints about doing it well! Today’s article is titled Advice to Retired Pastors and Their Relationship to the New Pastors in Their Former Congregations by Rev. Fred C. Jacobi.   While you…
By Ted Cunningham It is not at all unusual for congregations to call my office about matters that really seem small to me but are large for congregations.  Often the issues boil down to relationships within the congregation.  How we react and interact is important.  So is the perception of how we react, what we…
Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came up to him with her sons, and kneeling before him she asked him for something. And he said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Say that these two sons of mine are to sit, one at your right hand and one at…
A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver. Like a gold ring or an ornament of gold is a wise reprover to a listening ear. Pro 25:11-12 It is 4H time and 4H is pretty big in the Midwest!  Most counties have 4H fairs with all kinds of 4H…
We spend a lot of time trying to find good meeting places. There are some great meeting places, but our best meeting place is when we gather at the Lord’s table!  We may refer to this table and this feast as the Eucharist, Holy meal, Holy Communion or the Sacrament of the Altar, etc. It…
Are you doing vacation this year?  Whether you vacant at home or travel, I hope you get some down time for solitude and family.  We know that Jesus took such times on a regular basis.  Judy and I hope to get away – maybe escape to Wisconsin for a few days later this summer.  However…
Next Wednesday is July 5th, so I thought I would remind you of July 4th today!  We all know all about it of course and we may still have our flags out from Memorial Day and Flag Day.  But just in case, I hope you find this a time to talk with your kids and…
May there be abundance of grain in the land; on the tops of the mountains may it wave; may its fruit be like Lebanon; and may people blossom in the cities like the grass of the field!  May his name endure forever, his fame continue as long as the sun! May people be blessed in…
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Rom 13:1  What do we do on “Flag Day”?  Are you a “flag waver?”  Flag Day is not a big day, but it is a day to acknowledge our…
As a child I enjoyed reading Sherlock Holms and Edgar Allen Poe.  It was always fun to see if you could figure out the mystery before it was revealed.  The mystery of the Holy Trinity was one mystery I could not figure out!  When it comes to the mystery of the Holy Trinity we simply…
June 4, 2017, marks the final Sunday the University Lutheran congregation will worship at the Chauncey Hill location before moving to Northwestern Avenue. It is a moment for reflection and thankfulness for all of God’s blessings in this place. Through a special decommissioning service, the congregation will take time to recognize all that God has…
   When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place.  And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.  And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they…
And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me;   for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”  So when they had come together, they…
Great is the LORD and greatly to be praised in the city of our God! His holy mountain,  beautiful in elevation, is the joy of all the earth, Mount Zion, in the far north, the city of the great King.  Within her citadels God has made himself known as a fortress. Psalm 48:2-3 One has…
“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? Joh 14:1-2 This Sunday is the 5th glorious Sunday of Easter!  It is also Mother’s Day! …
Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest.  Already the one who reaps is receiving wages and gathering fruit for eternal life, so that sower and reaper may rejoice together.  For here the saying holds true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’  I sent you to reap…
Some of us work with professional staff and some of us don’t!    Today is the day set aside to recognize the contributions of Administrative Assistants.  These folks are critical to the functions of the District Office and millions of offices around the world.  They are partners and supports for everything that happens in our offices! …
When I asked one of our elderly members how she was doing, she would always answer, “Still kicking, not as high and not as often, but still kicking!”  Then on one Easter morning, she walked by with her walker and I again asked her how she was doing, “You know Pastor, on Easter I always…
This has been a very busy week for most of us!  As we commemorate Maundy Thursday and then tomorrow we also have our minds set on Good Friday the next Day and then Holy Saturday and of course Easter the next day!  Church worerks – pastors, teachers and music directors always are thinking ahead as…
Did you get your share of April Fool’s Day jokes?  April Fool’s Day is a time for funny fake news.  People expect it and enjoy laughing when they hear it. Fake news at other times is anything but funny!  It is often a lie told for deceptive and destructive purposes.  It also makes people leary…
It’s here!  “March Madness”  Right in the middle of Lent we find ourselves trying to guess the “Final Four” as we root for our favorite team!  It is exciting and it is fun – as long as you do not take it too seriously. We all have a favorite team, but we know that in…
Some people really like scary movies.  Some people just like the thrills of being scared. Or so they say.  Actually it is hard to believe anyone really enjoys being really scared!  Sitting in a movie with a box of popcorn and a soft drink for a scary movie does not seem scary to me.  I…
Has anyone ever said to you “Cheer up!”?  While it seems like a nice thing to say, most people cannot “Cheer Up” on command!  If something is troubling in a person’s heart or life they cannot solve it with a smile. It really doesn’t work to just “smile and be happy!” Even when we hear…
Before jumping in most people ask, “How deep is it?” Non-swimmers are very interested in the depth of the water. If it is not over their heads they feel much safer. Whether it is 10 feet or a hundred feet doesn’t really make much difference for swimmers and yet 100 feet seems more risky because…
The penitential season of Lent begins today.  This is Ash Wednesday!   I know you know that and are prepared to begin this important time in your life.  Today many of us will receive the imposition of the cross on our foreheads as a reminder of our temporal time on this earth.  From dust we came…
Have you ever been wonderfully humbled?  When you are in the presence of greatness – true and high greatness, it is exhilarating and humbling at the same time!  When you meet someone of great renown for the first time you may have sweaty nervousness and excitement.  What will they be like in person?  Sometimes we…
To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.  I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings. Do you not know that in a race…
While the history of Valentine’s Day is pretty murky, it has become recognized as a day to celebrate romantic love.  This is fine, but when it comes to love it is difficult for us to not consider the agape love which binds us to Christ and to one another in the most profound way.  Romantic…
What is tomorrow for you?  Maybe you know it as Candlemas, or the Purification of our Lord or the Presentation of our Lord.  It was an important day as Jesus was brought up to Jerusalem: “And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem…
This is the day that God turned a man’s heart, changed his eternity and lead a man into the mission field. This change brought the Gospel to countless people and this man still speaks to us today in God’s Holy Word:  Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to…
This is a big week in our country! It is the Inauguration our newly elected President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. As with all elections some people are happy with the outcome and some are not. Some are hopeful and some are fearful. Yet we all know that no two presidents are the…
It was amazing when Jesus sent the early disciples out in the mission field! “When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He told them:’Take…
This is the week of EPIPHANY! Epiphany puts things into perspective! Listen to the words of Simeon as he holds Jesus in his arms, “‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:…
What a year! Cubs win, Cubs win!! A surprise election! Stock market surges! A lot happened last year and now we are on to 2017.  What did it all mean/ What does it all mean? What will the new year be like? Some things will change and some things will remain the same of course.
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19 It is still Christmas joy for you! As we come to the end of the calendar year we find ourselves still “pondering in our hearts” the GIFT of our Savior! The world is pretty much done with Christmas and we…
We have been hearing recorded Christmas music in stores for weeks and probably in our homes as well. But now we come in worship on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day! Choirs, organists and instrumentalists have spent much of Advent practicing for the celebration of the Incarnation. Pastors have been preparing their sermons and the altar…
The Advent and Christmas season is wonderful for children and adults. Among my most fond moments of childhood are the Sunday School Christmas services! We would stand at the top of the stairs in our farm home and recite our “Christmas piece” until it was loud and clear enough for Dad to hear it in…
This is the day that President Roosevelt said would be a day of “infamy.” It was the day of an unexpected attack on Pearl Harbor. It drew us into World War 2. There are other days of infamy of course and we would quickly think of 9/11 as our modern day of infamy. While man’s…
It’s always a quick jump from Thanksgiving to Advent! We are here in Advent, a season of preparation and repentance! People prepare in a variety of ways and most congregations have a midweek service during this season. You will find some sort of Advent Wreath in our churches and our homes. The time of repentance…
O give thanks unto the Lord for His mercy endures forever!  
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble….The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.” This is a great Sunday! On the last Sunday of the Church year we rejoice in Jesus who is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!  As we think about the…
THERE ARE TWO KINGDOMS – right and left!  Elections are all about the kingdom of the left – the civil realm – the kingdom run by rulers, kings, presidents etc.  These leaders are always very fallible and sinfully human.  They must be – that’s all we have to chose from! What we can do and…
Are you feeling “saintly” today?  Yesterday we were reminded that a saint is someone counted as righteous because of the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ!  We are as forgiven as St. Peter or St. Paul or St. John etc!  We could have a church named after us!  We are saints in the best…
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God– not by works, so that no one can boast. Eph. 2:8-9 These words are emblazoned in our hearts and minds.  Celebrating the Reformation is to celebrate the grace of God!  Luther wrote, “Now…
The beauty of the fall season is something to behold in Indiana and Kentucky! One of my German professors of years past was well traveled. He had been all over the world and seen many of the great sights. He even showed slides (some of you have never heard of slides) projected on a screen.…
Reformation celebrations are underway and more and bigger ones are planned for next year! The Reformation month is a good time for us to share the Gospel and we remind our own people of the blessings we have in: The Three Solas (Faith, Scripture, and Grace) The value of a Biblical understanding of Law and…
Knowledge is great and wisdom is essential! Fallen though we are we are called upon on a regular basis to make decisions!  Some are relatively simple and not of long-lasting impact. What to order for lunch? Brown or black shoes today? Toll road or freeway? Other decisions relating to our work, family or future are…
Football is cranking up and baseball is winding down (although CUB fans are excited!). As a nation we love sports and many people have their favorite team(s). People can get pretty passionate about athletic competition! That was true even in Biblical times – “anyone who competes as an athlete does not receive the victor’s crown…
“By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” Gen. 3:19 Evidently my Dad really took this verse to heart – especially the “sweat of your face” part. This past week…
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever” Everything else changes! Alumni gatherings for anniversaries for high school, college and seminary are always interesting. Judy and I had the opportunity to attend such a gathering at Concordia University in Chicago this week. It is great to see friends and classmates from when they and…
The political conventions were really something! It seems the speakers love to use hyperbole to define their greatness and their opponents weaknesses. It’s easy to do. Have we not all exaggerated our strengths and magnified our neighbor’s weaknesses? Putting the best construction on what you hear about others requires a significant level of compassion and…
Vacations are winding down, schools are about to open (some have already) and people are moving around and maybe into your town or neighborhood. If you have ever moved you know how good and pleasant it is for people to introduce themselves and once in a while bring you a pie! This may seem a…
This summer we have had a significant number of installations for pastors and teachers! These are exciting times because they mark the beginning of something real big –  A NEW MINISTRY! The worker is new to the congregation/school and the congregation/school is new to the worker. As the school year starts the teacher is wondering…
As the summer moves along you may be saying, “It’s been a long hot summer and I am bored!” Or you may be saying, “this summer is flying by – I can’t believe school starts in a few weeks!” Whichever it is for you, I hope you can get a little “hammock time” yet this…
The “Big Easy” (New Orleans) is always hot but welcoming! The lively youth of the LCMS were not deterred by the heat as they met under the theme, “In Christ Alone”! This last big LCMS event of the summer is always a high point for our young people. The 16-20 of July were days filled…
Our convention concludes tomorrow and everyone will be headed home! All the displays have been removed, the “Yeas” and “Nays” have all been recorded, most people are tired and ready to be back home. The proceedings of this convention have been recorded and will be printed and sent out. As we arrive back home we…
The Fourth of July falls on Monday this year!  Hopefully that means you and your family may have a little longer weekend to enjoy!   Is this your vacation week?  If it is, you may take a little trip – visit some family or just enjoy “Americana” in your neighborhood or town!  We will always have…
For most of us it seems to go quickly!  My prayer is that you find some quiet time, prayer time and family time as the summer moves along!  With the Psalmist we say, “I will ponder all your work, and meditate on your mighty deeds”. Psa_77:12  I have had a “Fitbit” since Christmas and I…
Being a husband, father and grandfather is preceded by being a son.  Dad’s always hope that their parenting  leaves at least a little something to be emulated by the next generation!  Christian fathers are committed to this kind of parenting as they mark children as a gracious gift from God! “Grandchildren are the crown of…
It is a great comfort to know and trust that God is in charge and that even the “gates of hell will not prevail against the church.”!   Yet, the Bride of Christ is challenged and bruised in many ways in this world!  On those days when we feel like we are “under attack” we are…
On this day we remember those who have given their lives in defense of our nation.  This often involves the decoration of graves – often with a flag.  In many communities there are still parades on this day and in Indy of course there is the big race.  Some see it as the unofficial beginning…
We often speak the words of the Athanasian Creed this Sunday! This is a powerful and precious part of our confession as the mystery and majesty of the Trinity is presented in a detailed and explicit manner. It’s great! If you use it, you might consider using it in “pieces” so that our worshipers can…
Does Pentecost fall on Mother’s Day or does Mother’s Day fall on Pentecost? Well Pentecost came first and is a celebration that the Holy Spirit empowers the Church. It is this same Holy Spirit that gives power and direction to our Christian Moms! While Pentecost is a liturgical celebration and Mother’s Day is a national…
While we celebrate the Ascension as a time when Jesus returns to the Father to reign in glory, we know that He also promised to be with us always! The disciples were wondering what was next if Jesus leaves/ascends. We know the answer and it is just 10 days ahead. Ascension is reason for celebration…
It is a humbling and amazing thing to be sent by God to do His will! A job opportunity can be a real honor. A promotion can be humbling and a blessing and being selected to work in a new office can be a joy! However, being “sent by God” is a whole different thing!…
This is a big week as the seminaries and the District Presidents work on the placement of seminary graduates! We all remember this week of wondering and excitement! I remember talk of some huge dart board. That isn’t the way it works of course. You would be impressed at the amount of prayer, discussion and…
We gather as lambs with the one good, perfect and true Shepherd! Folks often ask me about a good “shepherding” pastor, teacher, DCE or deaconess when there is a vacancy. They never ask me about someone who has all the answers. They all want “shepherding” that reflects the heart of Jesus! Enjoy being that today…
We don’t like to doubt, but the news of resurrection seems so big, so good that we tremble! When Jesus healed the boy with an evil spirit the father was so overwhelmed that he said, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” Mark 9:24  Too good to be true? Thomas wondered that too as…
When the meaning of the resurrection really sinks in it is mind boggling and mind opening!  So much so, that we celebrate what it means to be One in Spirit and Purpose:  “Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures. He told them, ‘This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer…
“When it all comes together it will be great!” – Thus said mother fixing a complicated recipe for a gourmet delight.  This is Holy Week and everything is coming together as Jesus provides the feast we celebrate at our altars and then the cross of sacrifice. The comfort and strength of Holy Communion and the…
We have heard it many times on family trips! This Sunday is Palm/Passion Sunday.  Jesus arrives in Jerusalem on time to do the will of the Father for you and me. “As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them ‘Go to the village…
Ask David:  Open my lips, Lord, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.  Ps. 51:15-17
“Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning. Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity.” Joel 2:12-13 In an attempt to get people to focus…
Now it happened that as he was praying alone, the disciples were with him. And he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” And they answered, “John the Baptist. But others say, Elijah, and others, that one of the prophets of old has risen.” Then he said to them, “But who do you say that…
Having grown up in northern Indiana, Christmas for me was normally cold and often snowy. That was fine—I like snow and don’t mind the cold. It seemed quite natural to sing, “The snow lay on the ground. The stars shone bright when christ our Lord was born on Christmas night.” That’s the way I always…

Some people give thanks with prayerful words. Some love to sing songs of praise to God. Still others show thankfulness by their actions. However you give thanks, it is good to remember that sincere thanks comes from gratitude in our hearts.

“And so it was with me, brothers and sisters. When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I came to you in weakness…
“Our stewardship is not a casual part of our lives or an afterthought, but a prayerful, careful and generous lifestyle of gratitude. Planned and generous giving is our response to God’s love in Jesus.” My dad worked hard to support his family. It was always a labor of love, and we appreciated the endless hours…
How our faith connections unite us and make us stronger in Christ As I think about the connections we all experience in life, I’m reminded of the old children’s song that begins, “The toe bone’s connected to the foot bone.” The lyrics are inspired by Ezek. 37:1-14, when the prophet visits the “The Valley of…
Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the 40 days of Lent, and Ascension Day comes 40 days after Easter. On this day, Jesus gathered with his disciples, gave His final remarks, and ascended into heaven to be seated at the right hand of the Father. His entire mission — dying for our sins, conquering death…

Rev. Daniel May is president of the Indiana District of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod.