Wait on the LORD: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart;
wait, I say, on the LORD.
- Psalm 27:14
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Pastor's Blog

Teach Us to Pray 10.18.2015
Worship Service: October 18, 2015

Front Cover: Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Call to Worship:
Opening Hymn: #393 Teach Me to Pray
Praise Song: In His Time
Reading: Psalm 57
Praise Song: Lord, Listen to your children praying
Praise Song:
Scripture Reading/Prayer Genesis 32:24-32
KJV Genesis 32:1 And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of God met him.
KJV Genesis 32:2 And when Jacob saw them, he said, This is God's host: and he called the name of that place Mahanaim.
KJV Genesis 32:3 And Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother unto the land of Seir, the country of Edom.
9 And Jacob said, O God of my father Abraham, and God of my father Isaac, the LORD which saidst unto me, Return unto thy country, and to thy kindred, and I will deal well with thee: (You promised us)
10 I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands. (He was convicted of his personal unworthiness before God)
11 Deliver me, I pray thee, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau: for I fear him, lest he will come and smite me, and the mother with the children. (He asks for help from God for himself and his family)
12 And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude. (You promised us)

Jacob was very afraid as he was going to be meeting his brother, Esau, not knowing what the result of that meeting would be.

God, in the form of an Angel, initiated the wrestling match.

Jacob went from resisting God and hung onto God until He blessed him.

Prayer is human weakness casting our need at the feet of an all powerful God.

Jacob's (heel holder, supplanter, deceiver) was changed to Israel (God prevails)

God came down in weakness to bless Jacob even as His Son did on the cross, taking our weakness being born in the flesh.

Allow Him to interrupt our life. Allow God to change our name, instead of us changing His name. Allow Him to transform us into Him rather than we making God in our image.

Israel now had the power of God and therefore from then on clung to God rather than fought against Him.

Offertory Hymn: The Lord's Prayer
Sermon Text: Matthew 6:1-13
Title: Teach us to Pray
Speaker: Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Dear friend,  

May the quiet waters of God's grace be with you and in you today..
KJV Luke 11:1 And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray,....

Encouragemen by elders to explain and expand on the meaning of the Lord's Prayer

Text message: "Parenting is a group effort."

Meeting with three young people after church, and if anyone else wants to join us, please do so.

We need all of us to be a part of our collective worship of God in our fellowship.
Our Lord spent a lot of time with His/Our Father, for there are 27 specific instances in the Scripture in which He is found communing with His Father in prayer. He not only sets the example for us, but when He was teaching His disciples about Kingdom Life in Matthew's Gospel, He gave them what we call the "Lord's Prayer" and invited them and all future believers to use that form when they commune with their/our Father.. Luke in his Gospel writes that He pointed them to the Lord's Prayer" upon their asking Him to "teach us to pray."

I would like to draw your attention to this 'golden vial' that is near the pulpit. This concept is taken from the book of Revelation from the following verses which emphasize the importance of bringing all our worship needs before the throne of our God. Once prayers are prayed to Him, they are always before Him.

Revelation 5:8 And when He had taken the book, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, having each one a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.

The vials/container has been placed in the altar area to teach us that all our life is worship to God. Worship is not only singing and praising God, but it is our entire life is worship of Him and for Him.

KJV Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

So, today we are laying some ground work which is designed to add practical applications to our extended series on Prayer (communion with our Father), so that we will be able to experience more relevance between our weekly fellowship and in our lives during the week. We will briefly run through this outline that I have put together, being reminded that this is a skeleton and that hopefully after seeing this and thinking about it, many will come forth in order to enrich the life and work of our congregation through our collective participation in our worship both within our congregation and without our congregation.

Let us take our first glance at what has been done so far.....There are three categories that are designated here, first the overall outline and then the break down of the three main categories.

Worship Offerings

Thanksgiving and Praise Reports (What God has done for us)

Talent and Gift Offerings (We worship Him in return) Worship=Worthship

Improved Fellowship Suggestions (How might we nurture our fellowship's harmony)

Worship Offerings 1

Thanksgiving and Praise Reports: Ask for volunteers, limiting to two and for just a few minutes.

God Sightings

Doing Good and Resisting Evil

Worship Offerings 2

Talent and Gift offerings

Requests for practical help needed

Prayer Requests

Worship Offerings 3

Sermon Scripture/Topic suggestions

Suggestions for improving fellowship opportunities

Questions that you would like answered

Worship Offerings 4

Participation Options

Place in golden container (vial) after writing on slips of paper provided or call or send text to Pastor Orval at 320-224-1912.

Please include detailed information concerning your worship offering and Pastor Orval will contact you with further details.

It has been my desire for some time now to revisit this prayer anew, asking the Lord to renew and refresh the power of that which Jesus has so clearly taught us to do. Unfortunately consistent practices can become ritualistic to the point that they become mere words that we repeat without much thought being given to the deep meaning and purpose of them. So I am inviting you to join us on a journey through this prayer on Sunday mornings, as once a month (Lord-willing) a message will be brought using the Lord's Prayer as our outline. We will have the best teacher, for it will be our Brother Jesus Himself who will teach us to pray.

We will be continuing with our series on the "I AM's of Jesus" for, I think three more Sundays, but they will be scattered through out the rest of the year to where they best fit. Looking ahead, next Sunday is Reformation Sunday, so that message will focus on the foundation of Christianity: We are saved by grace through faith in Christ, and the following Sunday the message will be connected to IDOP, which means International Day of Prayer for worldwide persecuted church. Thank you for asking to be a friend of our KALC this week and we invite all of you who are facebook enabled ask to be our friends.

One more thing, the monthly newsletter which will be out next week will contain more introductory information to our series on the Lord's Prayer.

Our Father and His Son, our brother.
"Our Father"  We need to remember that we not only pray with all those in the body of Christ, but that when we pray our Brother Jesus Christ is praying with us and for us.

So when we enter into communion with Our Father, let us remember that He, Jesus, was quite comfortable spending a lot of time with Our Father in prayer for long periods of time, even all night at times. When we recognize that this earth is an alien land for Him, it is not that difficult to see how He was so accustomed to having fellowship and communion with His Father. It would be like He was going back home.

On the other hand, it is difficult for us to make the switch from our earthly existence and thought process to the realm into which it would be quite natural to pray with our Brother Jesus, "Our Father."
He allows us to share in His prayer, invites us to this communion and desires that through these times we would grow together in heart and mind with Our Father, with His Son and in the Spirit. May the age old saying that a family that prays together stays together apply within and amongst our blessed fellowship of believers.

Now as we continue our worship by joining Him at the table that He has prepared for us, after we read the introduction, we will hear personally as to how when He broke the bread and poured out the wine, that it was done personally for each of us to the end that we would receive the knowledge and the experience of the forgiveness of our sins.

Words of Institution of the Lord's Supper

Holy Communion Songs; 325 Just as I am, 172 Remember Me, 487 Cleanse Me, 164 O Jesus Christ Thou Bread of Life, 163 Break Thou the Bread of Life, 419 Confidence
Closing Hymn: #653 Thank you, Father

As you and I are drawn closer and deeper into the grace of God as revealed through the cross of Christ for us, we will be bound together into the union of love that has sought us and bought us for His glory and for His purposes in our lives.

Lord, teach us to pray...

Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Posted on 18 Oct 2015 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala
True Freedom 10.11.2015
Dear friend,

Do you/I like freedom? How would you/I define freedom?

It is defined as the ability to do as one desires, without the fear of outward restraint. The difficulty with freedom is that unless it is understood in its truth, freedom itself can be the greatest enemy of freedom. For freedom must first be won, it must be guarded through laws and it must be sustained. We can safely say that when inner righteousness leaves a nation, when moral absolutes are ejected and when the love for our neighbor is gone, soon destruction and desolation will come upon a person, upon a family, or upon a nation.

On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, by which all slaves of the Confederacy were freed from slavery. Heralded as the savior of the Union, President Lincoln actually considered the Emancipation Proclamation to be the most important aspect of his legacy. “I never, in my life, felt more certain that I was doing right, than I do in signing this paper,” he declared. “If my name ever goes into history it will be for this act, and my whole soul is in it."

From eternity there was another Emancipation Proclamation that was enacted, one that if understood, experienced and practiced, would have made the one signed in 1863 unneeded. For when freedom from self serving is understood as freedom for, we will love our neighbor as ourselves.

KJV Revelation 12:10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

In both cases, freedom had been won, but the enacting of it and the sustaining of it was quite another matter, as history has shown to us. In our scripture that we want to spend a little time upon today, the all important aspect of freedom is front and center.

John 8:31 Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
33 They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.
35 And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever.
36 If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

In this portion and in the rest of the chapter, essentially what happens is that the Jews stay firmly grounded in their understanding of God from the Old Testament and refused to recognize that the One in front of them, Jesus, was the fulfilment of the Old Testament scriptures. He was the One who had come to set them free, but the problem was that they did not think that they were bound. They maintained vigorously that they had never been slaves and were certainly not slaves now. This Jesus was speaking lies to them on some other language.

From history we know that many slaves were treated very well and their living and working conditions were fine. But many were kept under slavery through very deliberate and calculated ways. Some years back I read a short account of the life and of the reflections of the life of some slaves, and through that which I read some distinctives remain imprinted in my mind. I believe the reason why they remain there is that they are the same methods that the devil (yes, the devil) uses to keep people under spiritual slavery.

There are three points that I recall which I will list here, from the testimony of slaves.

1. Our master continually keeps us from seeing what the outside world is like and tells us that life will never be any better than it is as a slave.

2. Our master keeps us in fear by threatening to beat us, take away our food or our family.

3. Our master, Frances Burton, took away our names and instead we are referred to as his property: For example, My name before was James Johnson, but now I am referred to as France's Burton's slave.

As we remember the Reformation during the month of October, we cannot help but think of the concept of freedom. The masses had been freed from under the control of traditions that kept the them bound up and under the power of man. When they came to taste of the freedom that was in the Gospel, many grabbed it and ran to tell their neighbors. Others took that freedom and used it for themselves, and not for the benefit of their neighbor.

The main lesson of the Reformation seems to be that once unleashed, the Gospel alone has the power to bring people into the True Freedom that is in Christ Jesus. We are granted freedom from the penalty of sin,we are not free from the bondage of sin and one day will be free from the presence of sin. We are not slaves to Satan, but we are slaves to Christ.

We must fight against the evil one in prayer and in standing for the Truth that is in Christ Jesus. We must launch great counterattacks against the devil who cannot change that which has been done by Christ for freedom's sake.. All he can do and boy he is working hard, is to lie to people about what freedom really is. He will try to convince us that freedom is freedom from constraints. We need to tell him that the Emancipation Proclamation has been signed and to tell people that they have been freed. Whether it is someone in a foreign country, whether it is someone in a church that is not living in the freedom of the Gospel, whether it is someone living in a relationship where freedom is not present, or whether it is someone living in the blindness of sin, the news must go out: You have been freed, rejoice in the freedom which Christ has purchased for you, and so much desires that you would swim in that marvelous grace that flows from heaven.

Dear friend, believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved. Take Him at His Word and believe your sins forgiven today because of His atoning sacrifice on the cross. That is the only way that freedom can be experienced in our hearts, that is the only route by which our hearts will be cleansed from our penaly of sin, that is the only way by which the power of sin will be cut off so that love may fill out hearts which will then show itself in our relationships with one another.

Swim in the depths of God's grace today, my dear friend..

Pastor Orval Wirkkala

Posted on 11 Oct 2015 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

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Teach Us to Pray 10.18.2015
- Posted by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

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Carol Fischer and her family as they grieve the loss of Bob