Talked awhile back of the fact that diakonia, the word for merciful service, comes from a root word meaning through the dust. The problem is we don’t like to get dirty. Here is a section of a speech from President Harrison –
I think the danger of Confessional Lutheranism is that we concentrate on dogma, proclamation and administration of the Sacraments, which are the sine qua non of the Church’s existence. Nevertheless, if we do not love our neighbor, if we do not dare to get dirty, Luther says, “Jesus becomes incarnate in our flesh, and we take on the flesh of our neighbor when we serve our neighbor in love.” If we refuse to live an incarnate life, a life where we become incarnate in our neighbor in need, we render the Gospel a clanging cymbal, I am afraid. The powerful piece for us, I believe, is to combine, as so many of you know, even much, much better than the Missouri Synod—Madagascar for instance, India—many places you see it far better than in the Missouri Synod. If we dare to combine a rigorous orthodoxy with rigorous care for those in need, that is a powerful, powerful combination for our day.