I was honored to be the preacher for my home congregation's 125th anniversary service this past weekend. Trinity Lutheran Church in Sauk Rapids, Minnesota got a nice little write-up in the St. Cloud Times. My father, Paul, has served this congregation for 17 years. In that time many things have happened, including a relocation from a historic building to a brand new facility on the edge of the growing city. They also birthed a Sudanese immigrant ministry, and are training a man to be the pastor of this new mission. Imagine these dark-skinned Sudanese dotting the landscape of lily white central central Minnesota.
At 125 years you begin to learn something. You can look back at your heritage and track God's providential hand in the blessings as well as the tragedies. I am grateful for heritage, especially as I stood next to my father in the worship service. We represent a 5th and 6th generation of Lutheran pastors in the United State. That is not a source of boasting or even a source of pride. Rather, it is a source of humbling perspective. There is an overwhelming sense that God has been up to something for a long time, and I get to participate in it.