What am I Doing Here? by Suzanne Zobel

What am I doing here? Now that’s a question I’ve been reflecting on these initial days of this new position!   I’m sure many others are also wondering what will be happening now that BJS has an Associate Director.   Rev. Rossow has mentioned challenges such as helping to fulfill BJS’s original goals regarding the Confessions, liturgy, vocation and new Lutheran media.  So what does that mean and where does that start?

During my meetings and conversations with the Executive Director, several initials targets have been established and many ideas have been shared.   Actually, enough ideas have been shared to keep BJS (and SKL) active and moving forward for many, many years!   I’m sure many members and chapters also have ideas to share.   So that’s where it will begin:

During the next couple months (as quickly as possible), I will be establishing contact with each BJS chapter to listen to how things are going, how we can serve and support you better, and what ideas you have for carrying forward the purposes of BJS.   While communication with chapters is proceeding, communication with each member will occur for the same reasons – we want to hear from you!   When possible this communication will be face-to-face or by phone; email will be the back-up method.

Additional immediate tasks include helping to facilitate the adoption and implementation of the constitution and new Board of Directors, the development of new member and chapter recruitment strategies, and the launch of Sisters of Katie Luther (more on that in my next entry).

Expanding the membership and work of BJS (and SKL) will continue to build on the strengths already evident:   the great reception and use made of the website, our faithful members and chapters, the Quarterly, and annual conference event.   We hope to step forward in additional directions, such as regional seminars and events, better and more frequent service to/contact with our members, a regular newsletter between Quarterly issues, planning and developing our own Lutheran media, developing specific projects for chapters and members to adopt, increasing learning resources, and expanding our international presence.

Ambitious?   Yes.   Possible?   With God’s help and guidance.   Your participation? Let me know.   We need your input, reactions, ideas, and support.   Please feel free to share with us here or via email.

About Pastor Tim Rossow

Rev. Dr. Timothy Rossow is the Director of Development for Lutherans in Africa. He served Bethany Lutheran Church in Naperville, IL as the Sr. Pastor for 22 years (1994-2016) and was Sr. Pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran in Dearborn, MI prior to that. He is the founder of Brothers of John the Steadfast but handed off the Sr. Editor position to Rev. Joshua Scheer in 2015. He currently resides in Ocean Shores WA with his wife Phyllis. He regularly teaches in Africa. He also paints watercolors, reads philosophy and golfs. He is currently represented in two art galleries in the Pacific Northwest. His M Div is from Concordia, St. Louis and he has an MA in philosophy from St. Louis University and a D Min from Concordia, Fort Wayne.


What am I Doing Here? by Suzanne Zobel — 22 Comments

  1. I’m so very much looking forward to seeing your post on SKL.

    For those who are not members, who just read (& most likely, not post) what changes should they expect in the coming days & months?

    On tinder needles,

  2. I am probably going to kick myself for having a mental block or for being so incredibly dense as to not know, but [revealing depth of ignorance (sorry, an oxymoronic metaphor, I think)] . . . was ist SKL?

  3. Rev. Wollenburg,
    Offended? By no means, we thrilled when someone remembers there are “confessional” women!!!
    Which, I w/bias, concur….are the coolest ever!

  4. Dutch,
    With record lows all the way to Mexico, we are without doubt “the coolest” but probably not alone in that category. ;\

    Galatians 3:27-28

  5. Isn’t that interesting Helen? The ones who have nothing & are under threat, preserve and/or grow? I know those verses well, & others from Proverbs, to Peter (love him, he knew how to speak to us girlies) about my “coolness/worth”. I never felt the need to cast my hand to a vote, to prove my worth. The voter’s meetings I’ve attended, seemed to lack a vital item: Biblical discerning, God Given common sense. Oi vey. If I had a nickle, for every time someone poked my elbow, to say something…

    I try to keep in touch, w/those outside the US. I am concerned for them, I know how careful they must be (website, email & phone), & why they must be so. How is it, no one else seems to be? If it is that way w/them, how is it, we girls, don’t give more care to what we are called to do? Empathy w/truth, compassion, & encouragement is what we excell at!!!
    We girlies, for some reason, think that what we do, is what we are, or proves something to someone. What “someone” asked or implied that to us? I watched that, when my friends, “logged” in their tally of “critical moments” for the week, in some faulty competition w/their spouses or brothers. It isn’t about that, never was. I have a voice & it is heard Above, by our Father. I have sorrows & concerns, they are heard Above & here at BJS. I need not, cast a ballot, raise a hand, to prove my worth, it is seen by my Lord Above. That, is where it counts, & when it counts. Are we girlies here at BJS, the coolest? I think so! But, that is because we use what He gave us, not what someone said we should or had to. It belongs to Him, we use it for Him, and He does the rest. And I for one, think that is….the coolest ever! Being strong, doesn’t mean being hard. That is what I see when I read what Peter wrote to us us, girlies.

  6. Heavens, Dutch, what’s next? [Shine, Jesus, Shine with the lwml?]
    I must have been a girl once, but a “girlie”? I don’t think so.

    I’ve read the above three times and still don’t understand what you are saying.
    which is very unusual for you, Dutch. (Or maybe it will look better to me tomorrow.) 🙂

  7. Helen,
    I’m sorry, girlie, is a bit of a Brit thing. One has to be so very careful, to what one referres us or using said termage. I don’t know about you or how old you are, but “girlie” is rather a good thing for someone my age!
    You had mentioned, the lagging records down to the border. Have you looked into what goings on occur, outside our US borders? In the EU, Pacific theatre, or elsewhere? I do try, to make a practice of doing so. That is what I was referring to. Those under a threat, physical, emotional, Spiritual, for even praying before eating, in a public place, can get you either, depending on, where you are. I’ve seen it & known it personally. It makes things, rather crystal clear, as far as what is really vital are! It is rather a sore spot w/me, many have no clue, what occurs outside US borders. Even in England & Germany, things are dicey for our brothers & sisters.

    I think we “cheeky confession girlies” are the coolest. We know the risk we run in speaking out, and we need not cast a vote to prove it. Rather a sore spot, in my family. My Mum, lead the charge, for women to get the vote in our congregation (growing up) & both my sister & I disagree w/what the LCMS has placed women in. Lots of reason for it, but we both disagree what Mum did what right. That is why, I do tend to be cagey, with the subject, of us “girlies” (it is actually a rather endearing term across the Pond). Truthful always, but a bit cagey, to guage the situation. If you catch my drift. Sorry, I wasn’t plain speaking in this, I wanted to make sure this thread didn’t blow up into something it shouldn’t have been. Hope this helps.

    PS-I have no clue what shine Jesus shine is. What is that?

  8. Darren, I just googled Shine Jesus Shine. Cliff Richard? Cliff Richard, the Brit songster? There are LCMS churches, who actually sing this? Wow, rates right up there with Onward Christian Soldiers. Not

  9. Oh yeah. Our former LCMS congregation had that one as a regular in the praise song lineup. Lots of people standing up and waving arms over heads and the ubiquitous closing of the eyes while singing.

  10. Ah…do they know anything about Cliff Richards? That he has asked the CoE to bless gay marriage (time online uk archive)? Do they know he shares his many homes w/his “companion” a former R.C. priest? Don’t these people who bring this stuff into the LCMS, do “homework” anymore? Wait, I forgot, no, they don’t.
    I see articles on him once in a while in the UK papers. Oi, what are these people doing?!

  11. Dutch, Darren, and Helen–

    Now you’ve done it. I went to the Tabletalk site, and listened to the praise song cruncher segment, as you instructed, and heard “Shine, Jesus, Shine.” I am now sitting here, quivering, eyeing a full bottle of hard liquor, and asking myself, “Why did I go there?” Listening to that song brought back vivid memories, and untold anguish. I started stamping my foot–haven’t done that in church for years. Then I began to clap my hands, and dancing around the room. Then my wife rushed in, grabbed my laptop, threw it into the corner and bashed it with an 8# sledge. She is now driving an oak stake into it. That may be a bit of an over-reaction, but that’s what these praise songs do. Are you going to pay for my new laptop? Or the dings in the wall? Who will console my wife, who is now sobbing uncontrollably in the corner. She had joined Praise-anon, for the spouses of people like me, and now I’ve driven her to this. Why, oh, why did you have to tempt me?. Woe, woe!! Now she has to come with me to FW, and keep an eye on me so I don’t do anything rash while schmoozing with the BJS and other types. Thanks a lot!!

    Johannes, the formerly dry, but considering getting very wet indeed.

  12. Pay for your new laptop? Oh no, your post caused me to spray Sam Adams Irish Red through my nose, so I think we’re even.

    Besides, the oak stake may improve the performance of Windows.

  13. @Darren #16
    Whew! I’m over it. Called the Praise Song help line, and one of my guys helped talk me thru it.

    I just looked over at the laptop, and lo! Windows IS running better. Keyboard doesn’t look so good tho.

    Sorry about the Sam Adams thru your nose–OK, I’ll call it even.

    Johannes the dry-again.

  14. Okay, guys! “Shine, Jesus, Shine?” Had to grab two pina collatas, one for each hand to keep me from grabbing the sides of my head with a groan. I’ve repented of practicing that CW a long time ago .. bad memories…bad, bad memories of CW and “Shine, Jesus, Shine!” Props to my brothers at CU Nebraska for pulling me out of that mess!

  15. I didn’t have the player to listen to the link. Wow, blessed break for Dutch! Saved by the lack of loadability. I don’t usually laugh at this stuff, but really, Cliff Richard?
    Johannes, please express my deepest sympathy to your wife (& keyboard), for causing her husband to blow some of his neurons. I will pick another bottle of Pepcid, just for her.

  16. Okay, sometimes, when we chat about what we type here, just sometimes….someone who doesn’t…. makes a funny.

    “What it that water thing about?” My Mum says. “Long story, running gag, Gracie/Allen sort of thing”. I say, then read the posts on said issue, & explain.

    “You have your father’s warped sense of humor, if he were typing there, he would have typed the words to How Dry I Am”…

    Do I really need to type it out or is that quite enough for ya?

    Dutch, the Sahara like

  17. Look at it this way, Johannes, you have better means & avenues of aid, comfort & care than a dog. Dogs, cannot speak, His Words, His Peace, His Comfort & His Care. Dogs are great, but they can’t speak, only people can.
    Dogs can’t hug and they do not convey empathy or encouragement, as a child of Christ can.
    Hope the view out the window is better than mine! lol

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