Dear Congregational Family,

1. Sabbatical: During Pastor Carlson’s sabbatical, I am honored that he asked me to fill in for many of the Two on Tuesday submissions. I ask your indulgence, and I pray that God will help me to maintain Pastor’s excellent tradition, started some seven years ago.

2. National Day of Prayer: This Thursday, May 5th, our nation will observe the 70th anniversary of the National Day of Prayer. While various days of fasting and prayer had been observed during our nation’s early history, it was President Harry Truman who made it an official annual observance in 1952. Our church family will be observing this year’s Day with a prayer gathering in the adult Sunday School classroom Thursday evening at 7:00. We will have a guided, informal time of prayer for America for approximately 45 – 60 minutes. Come and lift up your prayers vocally or silently.

3. Mother’s Day: My youngest grandchild is 7 months old. She is obviously still getting used to the big world around her. When my daughter carries her near where I am, she stares at me for a few seconds, and then whips her head around and buries it into her mother’s shoulder. It brings home to me once again how important that mother/child relationship is! Sunday, May 8th, is Mother’s Day. Whether you are a biological mother, an adoptive mother, a foster mother, or a spiritual mother, a Happy and Blessed Mother’s Day to you!

4. 153: This past weekend Peggy and I enjoyed traveling to Valparaiso University in Indiana to attend the senior violin recital of the daughter of some long-time friends. On Sunday they took us to an LCMS church where their daughter’s friend was serving as a guest organist. The pastor preached on John 21, where the evangelist records Jesus’ third appearance to His disciples following His resurrection. He focused on the number of fish that the disciples caught with Jesus’ miraculous assistance – 153. His main point was that this was the kind of detail that signifies that this was an eyewitness account of a real event.

Throughout the sermon, however, he did explore other possible significances and symbolic interpretations, which he did not give much credence to. But he did offer an intriguing conjecture. Is it possible that ‘153’ became a kind of secret code shared between the disciples in the years that followed? Perhaps with a knowing look they would whisper ‘153’ and be reminded that their Lord was alive.

This thought resonated with me. Back in 2010 my brother and I and two friends traveled to Washington, D.C., for a Glenn Beck rally. The two friends had never met prior to this. Riding together in the back seat they conversed easily and found that they shared some common interests, including an enthusiasm for cars. When we finally arrived in D.C., we had a difficult time finding a place to park. After some searching we eventually found a lot with an open spot, and it had the number 427 painted on the asphalt. Our friends instantly said, “Oh, that’s easy to remember!” When my brother and I exchanged a puzzled look, the new pair of backseat friends explained that 427 was a popular engine size back in the 60’s and 70’s. To this day, we have a good chuckle when we see each other and talk about ‘427’.

153 — He is risen! Jesus is alive!

5. Sunday Sermon: Title: “Be True to Your Mother!”
Text: Acts 20:17-35

Growing Together in our Faith as the Family of God,

Tom Glasser for Pastor Carlson*