Rev. Norman Sulaica, Jr. grew up in San Antonio, Texas. He attended Texas Lutheran University in Seguin, TX and Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, OH.
Pastor Norm, his wife, Laura, and their four children joined the Our Savior Family in 2003.


OUR SAVIOR LUTHERAN CHURCH

PASTOR NORM'S MESSAGE

November 2021

Rev. William Secker shares that “A grateful mind is a great mind.” The pilgrims in 1621 understood this sense of gratitude. They endured a hard winter in the wilderness of North America. Little to no shelter, extreme weather, and limited food left these new arrivals living an extreme TV episode from the TV show Survivorman. Unlike Survivorman host, Les Stroud, the pilgrims could not pack up and leave the harsh winter elements at Plymouth Rock. 

In the midst of this struggling reality, the pilgrims paused after their first harvest with the sense of gratitude to God. 102 pilgrims out of 400 died during the harsh winter, and yet the remaining 298 pilgrims took time to thank God! The act of giving thanks to God was adopted by our nation’s leaders. Each year, the fourth Thursday of November is designated Thanksgiving Day. It is a day to feast on turkey, dressing, cranberry sauce, and much more. Around our tables sit the family God blesses us to have. Thanksgiving Day is set aside to reflect upon the many blessings given to us by the Lord! We are to have the very sense presented in Psalm 95:1-2, “Oh come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!” 

Unfortunately, the moment of joy is stained not by gravy or pie landing on our shirts, but by sin with in our hearts! Families are influenced by cultural platitudes and political divisiveness. The brothers and sisters we played with in our youth are now our adversaries. The granddad, who hugged us as a baby, is now outdated and irrelevant. Our parents, who changed our diapers, feed us, and protected us are cultural backward and clueless in our eyes! Yes, we come no longer with gratitude and thankfulness to Thanksgiving. 

But we allow strangers with personal agendas to turn us away from the people we love, even from the God who died on the cross for us personally. Maybe, it is time to set aside those who seek to turn our hearts to darkness! Maybe we should gather once more with our family and note the many joys they bring to our lives, and let them know about how thankful you are for them! Maybe it is time to look at our life and see the hand of God and His many blessings given to us! Yes, maybe it is time to be family, especially God’s family again. 

Happy Thanksgiving from the Sulaica family, and may God continue to shower you with His many blessings! 
Pastor Norm