United in the Gospel
Here’s a sacred privilege and great blessing always on the hearts and minds of our LCMS team, whether in St. Louis or on the far side of the globe: We are simply the projection of you — a holy member of the Body of Christ among a multitude of neighbors near and far. You in ministry, in mission, in mercy. What was begun in you at the baptismal font — where you were “washed,” “sanctified” and “justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11) — now proceeds outward into the world.
Having been freed from sin, death and Satan only by faith in the Word of the Gospel, now as the Church in union with her bridegroom, Christ, and in the genuine worship and obedience of the Lord Jesus, our life and work together is intentionally directed toward the benefit of others in body and soul. We pray that God’s Word would “not be bound but have free course and be preached to the joy and edifying of Christ’s holy people, that in steadfast faith we may serve [God] and, in the confession of [His] name, abide unto the end” (Lutheran Service Book, p. 305).
St. Paul counseled thus: “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Phil. 2:1–4).
What a cause for rejoicing! I see you in the stories that follow — in the Philippines, in Bangor, in Baltimore, in Puerto Rico, in Sierra Leone. Thanks be to our heavenly Father that the incarnate, crucified, resurrected and ascended Lord fills all in all with His life (Eph. 1:22; 4:10).
Rev. Kevin D. Robson
Chief Mission Officer, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod