Mt. Pisgah

Lutheran Church

9379 Hwy 127 North

Hickory, NC  28601

(Bethlehem Community)

Phone:  828-495-8251

Fax:  828-495-8252

Worship:  8:00 and 10:30 am

(Nursery provided)

Sunday School:  9:15 am

(For all ages)

Church email

Webmaster email


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Sunday, November 18th

Thanksgiving Feast & Worship

Dinner 5:15 Worship 6:30 pm


Saturday, December 1st

Bethlehem Star Lighting

6:30 PM Dinner

 7:00 PM Star Lighting

Sunday, December 2nd

Deacon Consecration

One service at 10:00 am

Bishop Tim Smith preaching


Sunday, December 9th

Mt. Pisgah Choir Cantata

8:00 and 10:30 am 


Sunday, December 9th

LRU Candlelight Concert 

7:00-8:30 pm


Sunday, December 16th

Children's Christmas Program 

8:00 and 10:30 am


Monday, December 24th

Christmas Eve Worship

5:00 and 7:00 pm

























« Celebrating a Faithful God in a Fickle World | Main | He's here in Plain View »

Keeping Track

It seems that the scriptures which are most pertinent and of most value to us are the ones that seem to both affirmingly pat us on the back and also kick us in the behind.

In the census—taking by David it is clear that he gets a real whooping for taking things into his own hands and then at the same time gets a gentle affirming reminder that he’s not in charge and never was, even of the numbers.

For me personally, as a Pastor, this passage is both haunting and refreshing. It haunts me with the truth that numbers can matter so much that they can take precedence over everything else. As a Pastor I can become like a spiritualized bean counter who can easily mistake large numbers of participants in pews and elsewhere and generous budgets as sole signs of God’s good favor, forgetting that the One we serve is always concerned for one of us at a time. Like the Shepherd who foolishly, from a numbers vantage point, leaves the 99 to go after the one stray. Even if that stray on once being found, may not even be in a mood to come home.

Picture a kicking bleating sheep on the shoulders of the Shepherd… But that is the risk and reach of the Shepherd who, as St Augustine put it, “if you were the only One on this sinful planet the Shepherd we know would have laid down His life just for you.”

So it is even in the stewardship realm that He reminds us that the Bread of Heaven, both manna and Jesus, who did not safely hoard but give themselves a way for the sake of the world

I am probably not even a passing student in this lesson of our Lord, and all the more reason why I am so refreshed He’s not into numbers. On those rare occasions when we get so caught up in the compassion of following our Shepherd that we do uncalculated generous acts of kindness, or as the scriptures put it “The right hand not knowing what the left is doing” or at the end we are counted among those who say, ‘Lord when did we do this for You?” Then it is we who who are doing Kingdom work and close to the very heart of our Good Shepherd.

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