I was born in Beloit, Wisconsin and grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. I received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Psychology, then went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Political Science, all from the University of Missouri St. Louis. I previously worked for Pella Windows and owned my own construction business.
In 2005, I received a Master of Divinity from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis and was ordained on July 24, 2005. I was pastor at St. John Lutheran Church in Claremont, Minnesota before coming to Holy Cross in June of 2011.
I enjoy cooking, grilling, and barbecuing outdoors (year round!), gardening, sports (my favorite teams are the St. Louis Cardinals and the Pittsburg Steelers), woodworking, reading mystery novels, and spending time with family. My wife, Trish, and I have two sons, two daughters-in-law, and five grandchildren.
Bible verse of the month
Isaiah 9:6….. “For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Luke 2:20… and after the shepherds had seen the baby Jesus, “The shepherds returned glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.”
Matthew 2:10-11… “When they (the Magi) saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the Child with His mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped Him. Then they opened their treasures and presented Him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.”
How much do babies appreciate the gifts they get when they’re born? Did Jesus, being the Son of God as well as the son of Mary, value the gifts that the Magi brought Him? We would think that those gifts would not be very practical for a baby, but then This wasn’t an ordinary baby. The gold most likely bought food and a place to sleep and everything else that was needed by the family as they soon had to flee to Egypt to avoid King Herod’s anger and threat to kill the baby boys 2 and under. The incense would have been burned as they prayed to God and the myrrh could have been used to bury that baby 30 years later. I believe that we can be quite sure that Jesus did appreciate the gifts that He got that day.
Now, what about the gifts that the shepherds brought Jesus? Well, we don’t know if they brought any specific gifts except their gift of worship, praise, and telling others what they had seen and heard. When you think about it, those are pretty great gifts as well.
Like the shepherds and the Magi, we too are being drawn to the manger to see Jesus and give Him our gifts. And to be sure, our gifts, no matter what they are, are appreciated We too can be sure that out gifts, no matter what they are, are appreciated by Jesus.
Starting today, let’s be like the shepherds and spread the word the Jesus is the Savior of all people.
Prayer of the month
Dear Lord Jesus, thank You for coming to be our Savior. Help us to give You our gifts our gold and silver, as well as our worship and praise. Grant us the strength and the opportunities to spread the word the You are the Savior of the entire world. Amen.