“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God – not the result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.” Ephesians 2: 8-10
This passage from St. Paul’s letter to the church in Ephesus expressed the identity of Zion Lutheran Church and of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the broader church to which we belong. We believe that God not only exists, but that the very essence of God is love! (1st John 4:7-8)
We believe that life with our loving God is all about what God has done, what God is doing and what God will do – and how God invites us into relationship with him to be part of God’s work in this world. It is God who acts – creating all that is, coming to us in Jesus of Nazareth, acting on the cross to save us from sin and death, calling us into relationship, and sending us out in mission to be God’s love for all creation. (Yes! We do have a purpose in this life!) Christian life is all about God’s work, through our hands, for the sake of the world.
For Lutherans, the word “grace” is key to understanding this relationship we have been given with God. Grace is the wonderful news that God truly loves us, in spite of ourselves. And this grace, this love, is not conditional. It is not “if” we do certain things or say the right things or believe hard enough or understand correctly, “then” God will love and accept us. Instead, we hear scripture proclaim that God has already declared his love for us. The only question for us is, how do we now live in light of this undeserved love, this amazing grace?
We belive that life with God is a journey that begins here and now, by the grace of God, and continues right into eternity. While some Christians focus on just the “end times,” as Lutherans we focus on the here and now where Christ Jesus continues to call us out into life, real life, life lived in God’s presence and for God’s purposes – God’s great mission of reconciling love.
Zion is a part of the Southwestern Texas Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
If you’d like to know more, we invite you to come and join us on our journey with God by worshiping with us each week. You can also check us out a bit more by exploring our page of sermon videos.
God bless you!
Pastor Dave Schulte