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Eze 37 Can these bones live(05)

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Einsegnung der Diakone

 

 

13. März, 2005


German Service

Einsegnung Neuer Diakone – March 13, 2005

 

Ich bitte die neu-gewählten Diakone und ihre Ehepartner,

nach vorne zu kommen:

Henry (Tina) Siemens,

Ronald (Sophie) Wiebe,

David (Aganetha) Zacharias

Liebe Geschwister im Herrn,

Heute ist ein besonderer Tag im Leben der Gemeinde.

Vor uns befinden sich die Brüder,

die wir als Gemeinde zum Diakonenamt auserwählt haben.

Und neben ihnen stehen auch ihre Ehepartner,

       Die ihnen in diesem Dienst zur Seite stehen wollen.

Wir danken Gott, daß diese Geschwister

Den Ruf zum Diakonenamt vernommen haben,

und wir als Gemeinde haben den Ruf durch die Wahl bestätigt.

Wir wollen diese Brüder jetzt für den Diakonendienst einsegnen,

Damit sie bevollmächtigt den Seelsorge- und Besuchsdienst

An die Gemeinde ausführen können.

Dazu will ich euch einige Fragen stellen,

die ihr mit euer Ja-wort beantworten dürft.

Henry Siemens, Ronald Wiebe, David Zacharias,

       Glaubst du von ganzem Herzen,

       Daß du von Gott und seiner Gemeinde berufen bist,

       Seinen Namen durch das Diakonenamt zu verherrlichen…

       Und durch Seelsorge und die Gabe der Leiterschaft

       Seine Gemeinde zu dienen?

Willst du dich vom Worte Gottes leiten lassen,

       Und deinen Glauben beispielhaft ausleben?

Willst du dein Leben nach den Lehren Christi ausrichten,

       Damit dein Leben ein Beispiel für andere sein kann?

Willst du im Gebet Gottes Führung suchen,

       Und durch seine Gnade anderen eine Stütze sein?

Willst du die Lasten der Gemeinde tragen helfen,

       Deinen Brüdern und Schwestern ermutigen,

       Trösten, und ermahnen…

       Soweit Gott dir die Kraft dazu schenkt?

Ja, ich will

Dann möchte ich auch einige Fragen an die Ehepartner wenden:

Tina Siemens, Sophie Wiebe, Aganetha Zacharias,

       Wir erkennen die wichtige Begleiter-rolle des Ehepartners

       Im Diakonendienst.

Die Gemeinde hat euren Ehepartner berufen als Diakon,

       Und so Frage ich euch,

       Willst du deinen Ehepartner unterstützen und Mut machen

       In seinem geistlichen Leitungsdienst in der Gemeinde?

       Willst du für und mit ihm beten?

       Willst du mit ihm die Freude und das Leid tragen,

       Die ihm im Rahmen der Gemeindearbeit anvertraut wird?

Ja, ich will

Auf Grund eures Versprechens      will ich euch nun

im Namen des Vaters, des Sohnes und des Heiligen Geistes

Zum Diakonendienst einsegnen.

Henry Siemens, der Herr segne dich und setze dich zum Segen

Als Diakon in der Springfield Heights Mennoniten Gemeinde.

Tina, der Herr schenke dir viel Kraft und Weisheit

       Wenn du Henry in seinem Dienst zur Seite stehst.

Ronald Wiebe, der Herr segne dich und setze dich zum Segen

Als Diakon in der Springfield Heights Mennoniten Gemeinde.

Sophie, der Herr schenke dir viel Kraft und Weisheit

       Wenn du Ronald in seinem Dienst zur Seite stehst.

David Zacharias, der Herr segne dich und setze dich zum Segen

Als Diakon in der Springfield Heights Mennoniten Gemeinde.

Aganetha, der Herr schenke dir viel Kraft und Weisheit

       Wenn du David in seinem Dienst zur Seite stehst.

 

Slide #1 (Einsegnung der Diakone.ppt)

Lesung

Ich bitte nun auch die Gemeinde aufzustehen,

       Und wir wollen im Bekanntmachungsblatt

oder auf der Leinwand

       Gemeinsam lesen, und den Segen Gottes erflehen.

       (Explain)

Gemeinde: Zusammen mit allen Heiligen durch alle Zeiten,

Haben wir Diener mit deinen Gaben für den Dienst an die Gemeinde berufen.

Fülle sie mit der Liebe Christi

Und die Kraft des heiligen Geistes

Um den Dienst der Gemeinde weiter zu führen.

Slide #2  Eingesegnete: Rueste uns aus mit Weisheit, Geduld und Hoffnung wenn wir straucheln,

Schenke uns Freude zum Dienst an deinem Volk,

Und gib uns die Kraft unserer Berufung treu zu sein.

Slide #3  Alle: Wir danken dir Herr

Für den Bau deiner Gemeinde,

Und für die Arbeiter die du Berufen hast.

Wir preisen deinen Heiligen Namen! Amen!

Slide #4

Gebet: Heiliger Vater,

wir beten für diese neuen Diakonen,

daß du ihnen Kraft, Weisheit, Verständnis,

und Mitgefühl schenken möchtest,

wenn sie manch einem in der Gemeinde

zur Zeit der Not im Glauben begleiten.

Wir beten auch für alle,

Die durch ihren Dienst und ihr Zeugnis

gestärkt, geholfen, ermahnt und angespornt werden.

Schenke uns allen einen Teil

in deinem Erlösungswerk hier auf Erden.

Laß uns eine heilbringende Gemeinde sein,

durch den Dienst und die Gaben,

die du uns verliehen hast.

Amen


Affirmation of the Commissioned Deacons

I will ask the new Deacons and their spouses to come to the front:

Henry (Tina) Siemens,

Ronald (Sophie) Wiebe,

David (Aganetha) Zacharias

In the German service we commissioned

       These three new deacons for their ministries

       And we prayed for God’s blessing upon them

       And upon their spouses as they offer support

       And encouragement in this important task.

We want to take some time to recognize and affirm

       These servants in this service as well.

We have heard your affirmation

that you will seek to serve God and this congregation

to God’s glory and honor.

You have expressed your desire to study the Word of God,

       And to be an example and encouragement

       For the people you serve.

You have said that you will persevere in prayer,

asking God’s grace for yourself and for others,

and offering all your labors to God.

As Spouses, you Tina, Sophie and Aganetha have also affirmed

       Your support of your husband

       In his role of deacon.

And so, we commissioned you Henry, Ronald and David,

       In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit

       To the ministry of Caregiving as Spiritual leaders

in the Springfield Heights Mennonite Church.

Slide #1 (Affirmation of Deacons.ppt)

Responsive Reading

Please take your bulletins and join me

       In a responsive reading of affirmation

       And commitment.

People: In company with your faithful people in every age,

We have called out those with gifts for your service, O God.

Fill them with the love of Christ

And the power of the Spirit

As they carry out the church’s ministry.

Slide #2 Commissioned:

Grant us wisdom, patience and hope when we falter.

Give us joy in serving your church

And keep us faithful to this calling.

Slide #3 All: For the ministries taking form within us,

And for those who you will continue to call,

We praise your name, o Lord! Amen!

 

Slide #4Prayer of Commissioning

Holy God, your love for us was so great

that Christ emptied himself of his equality with you,

taking on the form of a servant.

Grant these Deacons and their spouses

Would have the mind of Christ

that they may have a share in His ministry.

Pour out your Holy Spirit on each of them

so that they might be given all the gifts

needed to fulfill their commitment.  Amen


 

Slide #1 (Eze 37,1-14 Can these bones live.ppt)

 

Can these bones live?

 

Ezekiel 37:1-14
 
 Slide #2
1 The hand of the LORD was upon me,

 and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD

 and set me in the middle of a valley;

 it was full of bones.

2 He led me back and forth among them,

and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley,

bones that were very dry.

3 He asked me,

"Son of man, can these bones live?"

I said,

 "O Sovereign LORD, you alone know."

Slide #3

 4 Then he said to me,

"Prophesy to these bones and say to them,

'Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!

5 This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones:

I will make breath enter you,

 and you will come to life.

 6 I will attach tendons to you

and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin;

I will put breath in you, and you will come to life.

Then you will know that I am the LORD .' "

Slide #4

 7 So I prophesied as I was commanded.

And as I was prophesying, there was a noise,

a rattling sound,

 and the bones came together, bone to bone.

8 I looked,

and tendons and flesh appeared on them

and skin covered them,

but there was no breath in them.

Slide #5

 9 Then he said to me,

"Prophesy to the breath;

prophesy, son of man, and say to it,

'This is what the Sovereign LORD says:

Come from the four winds, O breath,

 and breathe into these slain, that they may live.' "

10 So I prophesied as he commanded me,

and breath entered them;

they came to life and stood up on their feet-a vast army.

Slide #6

11 Then he said to me:

"Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel.

They say,

'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone;

we are cut off.'

12 Therefore prophesy and say to them:

'This is what the Sovereign LORD says:

O my people,

I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them;

I will bring you back to the land of Israel.

Slide #7

13 Then you, my people,

will know that I am the LORD ,

 when I open your graves and bring you up from them.

14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live,

and I will settle you in your own land.

Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken,

and I have done it, declares the LORD .' "

 

Slide #8

Graveyards are sad places to visit.

I’ve seen many graveyards in my lifetime…

       And I can never quite get used to them.

I was about 2 or 3 years old

       When I went to a graveyard for the first time in my life.

My younger brother only lived for two hours.

My mother was not able to be at the simple burial

       In the hills close to the Leprosy Hospital Km 81.

I remember the feeling of helplessness and anguish

       As I was allowed to hold the lifeless body of my baby brother.

Even as a little child I had many questions

       But there were no answers…

Slide #9

Many times since that first encounter with death

       Have I stood by the grave of a loved one

       Or a member of my faith community…

       Helpless…

       Even hopeless at times…

The death of children or of a person in the prime of her life

       Is always particularly troubling to me…

When our baby died in December of 1987…

When Natalie, the daughter of our friends,

died of a brain hemorrage at the age of 7…

A few weeks ago when Sammy Geddert was laid to rest…

You feel so helpless…

So powerless against the power of death…

Your heart wants to despair and give up…

Graveyards are sad places …

Slide #10

Ezekiel was confronted with a grim and depressing,

       In fact, a gruesome and disgusting picture...

He was led back and forth in a valley…

and he saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley,

bones that were very dry.

These were not just bodies of people

that had recently passed away.

These were completely dead and decomposed bodies

without a shred of life left in them.

Slide #11

Worse yet, God said to Ezekiel,

“Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel.”

The image that God wants Ezekiel to see

       Is that of a people whose spiritual life

       Is as dead as a doornail.

Slide #12

In 586 BC Jerusalem was totally ruined by Nebuchadnezzer

and his great Babylonian army.

Solomon’s Temple,

which had been the pride and glory of Israel

for almost 400 years was reduced to ashes;

all the inhabitants of Jerusalem had been taken

either to Chaldea or to Babylon into captivity.

Although they had been warned repeatedly by God

through His prophets, including Ezekiel,

they had turned a deaf ear!

Now they were spiritually dead.

They were saying,

‘Our bones are dried up

and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’

They had come to complete despair in their Babylonian Captivity.

They thought that God would never take them back.

They had no hope left for a future and a promise…

They had completely lost their faith

that God would bring them back to life.

When God presented Ezekiel with this graveyard image

and asked him,

“Son of man, can these bones live?”

What did Ezekiel say?

He said, “O Sovereign LORD, you alone know.”

He honestly said, “I don’t know.”

He knew God was almighty,

and he wanted to believe it,

but how could they live?

Slide #13

A man aproached a little league baseball game

       One afternoon.

He asked a boy in the dugout what the score was.

The boy responded,

       “Eighteen to nothing – we’re behind.”

“Boy” said the spectator,

“I’ll bet you’re pretty discouraged.”

“Why should I be discouraged?” replied the boy.

       “We haven’t  even gotten up to bat yet!”

Allow me to ask you…

Do you know the feeling of standing in a valley of dry bones?

       …knowing that you’re eigtheen to nothing behind,

       And not knowing whether you will get up to bat?

Slide #14

Maybe you see before you the dry bones

Of your grief and loneliness

Because someone you loved dearly has died…

Maybe you’re standing in the valley

Of the death of a relationship

       That you thought would last forever…

Everywhere you look, you see the bones –

       That serve as reminders of the strength and vigor -

       Of the love and mutual care that you once shared…

Slide #15

Maybe you are living in a graveyard of dead love

in your marriage.

Some of you are standing in this valley of dry bones right now…      

Slide #16

Maybe you are dealing with a serious health concern

       In your family

that makes your hope faint…

and you feel that there is no future

and no hope for a long and fulfilled life for you

or your loved one…

Maybe you are looking into the valley

       And you observe a sea of disappointments…

       Unfulfilled hopes and dreams…

       Bitterness and anger about the way

you’ve been treated at work

you didn’t receive the promotion and the raise

you deserved…

or you are treated with disrepected

and you’ve been taken for granted for too long…

Maybe you are seeing the dry bones

of a job that isn’t going anywhere

and that frustrates you to the point of unimaginable pain…

Some of you are seeing this valley of dry bones

       Before you right now…

Some of you may be staring into a graveyard of finances

       there seems to be no way out of debt…

       you work day and night

       holding down two or three jobs

       just to make ends meet.

At the end of the day all your energy is spent.

You don’t have the time or the energy

to give to your spouse and kids,

your friends and your church.

Again, some of you may be standing

in a moral valley of dry bones.

You’ve been defeated so many times by the devil…

       You feel that there is no remedy available

       That can bring your integrity as a person back to life.

You’ve been less than truthful with your family and friends,

       You’ve taken what did not belong to you…

       You’ve broken the trust of people who counted on you…

       You feel like a failure…

Or, some of you may be in a spiritual wasteland.

       God seems so far away.

In our society we get so confused

by the many winds of change that blow in every direction.

Maybe you have walked away

from the safety of the community of faith…

Maybe you’ve been hurt by the church

And your faith is being sucked out of you

Because of some insensitive remark or action…

Some of you, like the entire nation of Israel,

       May feel like an Exile in your own church.

       You may feel that your bones are dry

and your hope for renewal in the church you love so much

is all but gone.

You may feel cut off from the fellowship

With no hope for a return,

And you may even be looking for a community elsewhere

That will revitalize your faith.

If any of these situations

       As well as countless others

       Is your situation today,

       Then listen to what God has to say to you…

Slide #17

God is asking you, in the middle of your valley of dry bones,

       “can these bones live?”

In the last two weeks this thought has been

very much on my mind,

       “Can these bones live?”

As I’m dealing with questions in my own life of faith…

       When I get discouraged…

       I hear God’s voice say to me

       “Ferd, can these bones live?”

       “Can your dead hopes and dreams come alive again?”

       “Can that which lacks vitality and energy in your life,

       Be revitalized, and bring fruit again?”

And you know, I have to be honest with you,

       I would love to be able to say,

“Of course Lord, I know that they can live!”

But, I must confess

that I’m a bit like Ezekiel…

“Sovereign Lord, you alone know the answer…”

You see, like Ezekiel, and the people of God,

       we have been in Exile for too long…

We have been away from the heart of God…

       We have seen too much devastation…

       Too many dried and bleached bones

       In our relational life…

       In our work…

       In our families…

       With our health…

       With our finances…

       Our church…

       And whatever else the situation may be.

The question facing us is the same

as the question that was before Ezekiel:

How can we find hope in the midst of gloom?

How does God give us hope in our times of darkness?


Ezekiel knew that God could bring life into these bones,

but he seemed hesitant to say,

“YES – of course, they can live.”

So, let’s observe how God renewed Ezekiel’s faith

in this time of doubt.

God says to him,

       “Prophesy!”

       Look at your situation that is as dead as dead can be.

       Address your situation…

       Speak the promises of God into your life…

       Prophesy…

       Envision the graveyard coming alive

Watch Your God at work!

This is the kind of stuff that you’d expect to see

In a “Magical World of Disney” movie.

The pieces come together…

       Connecting tissue forms to hold them together…

       Tendons and flesh grow to form the Muskles

       That make the body complete again…

And then, to top it all off,

       The living breath of God

comes from the four corners of the world…

the same breath of life…

the Spirit of the living God

that spoke the universe into Being…

What an awesome feeling that must have been for Ezekiel.

This is the way God works throughout human history.

Remember the story of Jesus’ friend Lazarus,

who had died?

When Lazarus’ body lay dead in the grave for four days,

it was beginning to decompose.

It couldn’t hear.

It couldn’t move.

It was dead.

But what did Jesus do?

Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!”

The dead man came out,

his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen,

and a cloth around his face.

Lazarus’ resurrection had nothing to do

with anything that HE did.

He was dead.

But

Jesus was able to put life into Lazarus’ decaying bones

and breathe Life back into his lungs

with the powerful Word of the living God.

My friend,

       When your situation looks hopeless…

       When you see nothing but dried out bones all around you…

       Trust in God’s amazing power to bring you back to life!

God alone holds the answer to hopeless situations.

And, God absolutely delights in doing the impossible!

It is not by our own power

       Or any self-help tool

       That our dead bones come back to life.

But by the power of Almighty God.

 

Slide #18

Listen again to God’s Promise,

13 Then you, my people,

will know that I am the LORD ,

 when I open your graves and bring you up from them.

14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live,

and I will settle you in your own land (situation).

Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken,

and I have done it, declares the LORD.

 

Friend,

Do you believe that God can give your life

A complete make over?

Slide #19

God wants to speak new life,

       Healing and hope into every ounce of your Being.

Trust in Him…

       He can do it!

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