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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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And God said ... 'No'

I had just come downstairs after putting my tired 4-year-old twin girls and 7-year-old son to bed. A few minutes later one of the girls, Ellie, called down and said, “I just can’t fall asleep.” I said, “Close your eyes and be still and I’m sure you’ll fall asleep.” She said, “I’ve closed them 100 times and it’s just not working.” So I replied, “Then close your eyes and ask God to help you fall asleep.” I thought that was the end of it until she called back a few minutes later and said quite matter-of-factly, “God said no.”

Jill Saunders
Whispering Pines, N.C.

I told you matching T-shirts was a
“I told you matching T-shirts was a bad idea!”
Creative table grace

Our granddaughters, Kelsey, Hannah and Rylea Mae Ranum, were visiting us. When it came time for the table prayer, we all held hands and sang their favorite, Johnny Appleseed. Rylea Mae, 3, cried throughout the entire prayer. We asked her what was wrong. She said, “I didn’t want to sing that one. I wanted to sing Eency Weency Spider!” So we did.

Paul and Marilyn Ranum
Grand Marais, Minn.

I used to get exasperated trying to get my three young sons to stop playing and to come eat when meals were ready. One Sunday I was teaching my kindergarteners about the need for prayer, especially at mealtimes. I didn’t get the response I expected when I asked my 4-year-old son, Paul, what we say before meals at our home. He thought for a moment and replied, “Get to the table.”

Oh no! The order of worship is written
“Oh no! The order of worship is written in stone.”
Donna Backlun
Grandin, N.D.

Has it been nearly 30 years?

The year was 1977, and we were introducing a setting from the “new green hymnal” at our local pastors’ meeting. I had a rare advance copy, so I set a neighboring parish secretary to work preparing a stencil for copies. A Lutheran by conviction, she saw no need to check with me in correcting what must certainly was an error in the Apostles’ Creed. Imagine the surprise of two dozen pastors as we boldly confessed: “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Lutheran Church ....”

Mark Nygard
Minot, N.D.

Our congregation, Immanuel Lutheran, is part of the George-Little Rock School District in northwest Iowa. Both towns are also active in a combined ministerial. Several members insisted I take our bulletin along to our next ministerial meeting. It said we were to sing “Have No Fear, Little Rock.”

Michelle Rowell
George, Iowa

It was “game day” for my preschool/kindergarten Sunday school class and the topic was forgiveness. We played “Duck, duck, gray duck,” but I had them say “forgive, forgive, forgiven” instead. When Sutton took his turn, he proceeded around the circle touching classmates on the head and saying, “Forgot, forgot, forgotten.” I was about to correct him when it occurred to me that he may have learned the lesson of forgiveness best of all.

Susan Jungclaus
Lake Lillian, Minn.




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September issue

SEPTEMBER issue:

Reinventing Sunday school

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