Weekly e-News Friday, January 27, 2017

Looking Ahead

            Worship and Youth Sunday School at 10:00 a.m. and Fellowship at 11:00; 1:00 p.m. Worship in Nepali.

            Bible Studies: Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. and Wednesday at 1:00 p.m.

Choir party at Pizza Ranch on Saturday, February 4, at 11:30 a.m. for any who are able to attend.

 

            Annual Congregational Meeting and potluck is this Sunday, January 29. A potluck meal will follow with this suggested guideline: A-H, Salad; I-Q, Dessert; R-Z, Main Dish.

We will need to elect a Deacon for a two year term so please pray and think about who you might nominate.

            The plots in our mission garden will begin to be assigned. They are approximately 20’ by 16’. There were 35 plots last year used by people in the apartments. There will be a $10 fee this year to help cover water costs. Are there any in our congregation who need a plot?

 

          Did you read the book The Shack? It was a great and imaginative read in an attempt to describe God working with us. Now, it has been made into a movie:

            The Shack movie, in theaters March 3, is based on one of the best-selling novels of all time and is a modern-day fictional parable that explores the nature of God, His goodness and love, the power of forgiveness and how He helps us deal with pain. 

The Sermon Sunday will be “Blessed to Receive Extraordinary Gifts from God” from Psalm 15:1-5- Who shall dwell on the holy hill of the Lord? And Matthew 5:1-12- The Beatitudes.

“O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy hill?” Psalm 15:1.

 

Around Church this Week:

            Justice Fire and Safety was here on Monday and checked our fire extinguishers for the year, taking the big one in the hall for testing (leaving another in its place) and returning it on Tuesday.

            Session met on Monday and again on Saturday.

            A BIG Thank You to Lanny Auringer for clearing the parking lot on Wednesday. I also spent an hour and thirty five minutes scooping and blowing snow from the sidewalks. It can be done in half that time with a lighter snowfall. I had to clear the 6th St. sidewalk again on Thursday after drifts encroached.

            We received the Camp promotional materials. The next events on the schedule are the Women’s Retreat Unplug at Pioneer Camp March 17-19, and the Men’s Retreat Led into the Wilderness: How Faith is Forged in Wild Places April 28-30. All of the camps and information about how you can use the facilities for a family trip to the Black Hills, family reunion, group trip, or church groups may use the facilities in exchange for a donation to help the ministry, can be found at the website http://pioneerrimrock.camp/ .

            My son, Josh, is the one who put the website together for the Camps and hosts it from his servers. I didn’t have anything to do with selecting the pictures on the site, but two of our Xtreme Faith girls, Melody  Englert and Danica Zimmer are featured in the top left picture of the collage when you scroll through the three sets of pictures on the home page.

Chuckle:  “The One whose throne is in heaven sits laughing. . . .” (Psalms 2:4)

A college roommate of mine was doing her student teaching. While she watched the second graders practice their writing, a little boy raised his hand to get her attention.
“Teacher, how do you spell ‘sex’?” Startled at the question, my friend made her way to his desk and quietly asked, “What word did you want me to help you spell?” The little boy replied, “I have the first part–I-N–but I don’t know how to spell the whole word–‘Insects.'”

~ Linda Strater, Elk River, Minnesota. Christian Reader, “Kids of the Kingdom.”

Birthdays this Week:

28 Ardella Kjergaard

Anniversary this Week:

4 Donald & Artilda Haffner

Prayer Thought:   “Prayer is the slender nerve that moves the omnipotent muscle of God.”  ~ Charles Spurgeon.

The following is excerpted from the book by well-known author and Pastor we have used in Bible Study, Rev. Jim Cymbala:

The most important lesson we can ever learn about prayer is that we are absolutely dependent on God. Jesus tells us in John 15, “Apart from me, you can do nothing.” The tricky part is that we can do lots of things on our own, but the impact and fruit of our work is “nothing” unless Jesus empowers us. Psalms 132:2 says: “As the eyes of a slave look to the hand of their master . . . so our eyes look to the Lord our God till he shows us mercy.” A slave is completely dependent on his master, and that’s where we stand in our need for the Lord.

Thurman Thomas was the leading rusher in the AFC in 1991 and helped to lead the Buffalo Bills to the Super Bowl that year. But, on the very first play of the Super Bowl, Thomas wasn’t even on the field because he had lost his helmet in the pre-game warm-ups. A football player wouldn’t dream of going onto the field without his helmet; and we as Christians shouldn’t think of facing life or doing ministry without prayer underlying everything we do.

Jim Cymbala reminds us: “God is attracted to weakness. He can’t resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him. Our weakness, in fact, makes room for his power.” (Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire: What Happens When God’s Spirit Invades the Heart of His People)

Please keep in prayer: Mary Ann Kjergaard, Jayden Ausland, Jeanne Marsh, Jeff Lewis, Rose Thuringer, Esther Bakker; Ardella Kjergaard.

                 The following is excerpted from an article by well-known author and Pastor Rev. Dr. John Piper I found at http://churchleaders.com/news/298083-inauguration-president-trump-unqualified-president-desiring-god-john-piper.html . The first part of the article shares why he feels Trump is not morally qualified to be the President. I pray that the example that has already been set through the prayer service aired on TV and those who led prayer at the inaugural (including Rev. Franklin Graham) will be a positive start to changing that condition. Here is the end of the article which is pertinent for all who seek to live their faith in the world in which we live:

How Then, Under This President, Shall We Live?

  1. Let us pray that God would grant the gift of repentance (2 Timothy 2:25; Acts 11:18) and saving faith (Romans 10:1; Philippians 1:29; Ephesians 2:8) to Donald Trump and all those in authority.
  2. Until God answers that prayer, recognize that God’s providence rules over the unrepentant kings of the earth (Daniel 2:37–38, 4:35; Psalms 47:9; 135:6). “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will” (Proverbs 21:1). Therefore, God can restrain the pride and folly of secular leaders (Genesis 20:6). Just as with the Babylonian Nebuchadnezzar (Jeremiah 25:9), and the Persian Cyrus, God makes the rulers of the earth “fulfill all [his] purpose” (Isaiah 44:28).
  3. Accordingly, let us go on to pray “for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and holy in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:2–4).
  4. And as we pray, let us recognize that, even in unbelieving leaders who cannot do God-pleasing works of faith, there is the possibility of promoting “good” conduct, which is “good” in the sense of having the outward form of what genuine trust in Christ would do.

To be sure, “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6), and “whatever is not from faith is sin” (Romans 14:23), because when human conduct is not rooted in reliance on God, it is part of the very rebellion that ruins the world. Nevertheless, the apostle Peter teaches that even unbelieving rulers are sent by God “to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good” (1 Peter 2:14). So, even though this “good” is not from faith, and therefore does not please God as the fruit of faith, yet it has the form of the conduct that would come from faith.

  1. Therefore, even though it is not the main concern of the Christian church, and may not lead to salvation and eternal life, let us also pray and work this lesser “good,” as well as the ultimate good of faith in Jesus Christ, and the genuine love for people that glorifies our Father in heaven (1 Peter 2:12), who called us “out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9).
  2. Above all, let us commend to everyone, with every sacrifice necessary, “the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:4), and, if God wills, let us gather with more and more people, from every ethnicity and every class, into healthy, holy, humble, biblically faithful churches.

Let us worship together in beautiful diversity and harmony with reverence and awe (Hebrews 12:28) the one true and living triune God. And let us love each other “earnestly from a pure heart” (1 Peter 1:22), and keep ourselves “unstained from the world” (James 1:27), so that the church becomes a beautiful alternative to “the corruption that is in the world” (2 Peter 1:4).

  1. And let us work with all our might (1 Corinthians 15:10) and with overflowing joy (2 Corinthians 8:2) to take the greatest news to the peoples of the world, who have no access to the saving truth that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners from eternal death (1 Timothy 1:15), and give them everlasting joy with God (1 Peter 3:18; Psalm 16:11).

Let us not exhaust ourselves bemoaning a Trump presidency. There are peoples whose privileges of prosperity and possibility are vastly inferior to ours. Having been so loved by God to receive the gospel, we are debtors to them (Romans 1:14). Do not think of the molehill of moral and social disadvantages of a Trump presidency. Think of the Himalayan mountain range of blessings we have in Christ. Let this put fire in our bones for what matters most: the salvation of the world.

Eternally Blessed,    

Pastor Dave Ullom <*}}}<  

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