Listen & Read

COVID-19 Update – March 18, 2020

Dear fellow child of God,

As you already know, these are extraordinary times in which we are now living. Please take a few minutes to read this letter. It explains some difficult decisions that have been made, decisions made out of love for one another, for our church family and for our community at large.

The most important family of which you’re a member is God’s family. Your heavenly Father loves you, cares for you and promises you blessings for this life and for the life to come. Trust him in every situation. Cling to him when times are good and when times are challenging. Approach him boldly and confidently. He’s at your side and will never nor forsake you. His promise to Joshua is your promise: “I will never leave you or forsake you” (Joshua 1:5).

Your pastoral, school and congregational leadership team is prayerfully monitoring government recommendations and mandates, along with recommendations from our WELS leaders, in making decisions on behalf of our church family. We seek your patience and understanding.
Continue reading “COVID-19 Update – March 18, 2020”

March 15, 2020 Prayers

Extreme Makeover???

… and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. Ephesians 4:23-24

A popular television program features women who receive a fashion makeover. A haircut, cosmetic tips, and a new wardrobe produce dramatic changes. But surprisingly, the recipients are most vocal about the internal changes: attitude, confidence, self-esteem. Christians sometimes forget they have been given a spiritual makeover. When Christ gave His life on the cross to redeem us, our old self died with Him.

Although our salvation is now assured, we often live with the old clothing of guilt, shame, and fear. We attempt to camouflage ourselves with perfection and good works in order to earn God’s mercy. We are living with old messages that cheapen the gift of grace. The apostle Paul encourages us to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God … (Ephesians 4:24). Because of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross we have been transformed. We wear His robes of righteousness and holiness. We are never the same after the Master’s makeover!

Prayer

Dear Lord, our Protector, You invite to come to you in all things. Today we ask that you spare people in our community, our country and around the world from harm to both body and soul. Grant healing and strength to those who have been afflicted with the coronavirus or other sicknesses. Be with care providers, giving them wisdom and guarding them from danger. Grant wisdom to our local and national leaders as they make decisions on behalf the citizenry. Calm fear of the unknown and grant us, through your Word, strong faith and trust in your promises. Give us confidence in your care, even as you have shown us your faithfulness so many times, especially in the saving work of Jesus. And finally, help us to be alert for opportunities to witness to your grace and share with others the confidence we have through the good news of our Savior.

Grow in Grace – Lord Jesus, our Good Shepherd, we thank you for providing pastors to shepherd the congregations of our synod. Bless our efforts to provide continuing education, mentorship, and ministry resources to pastors through the Grow in Grace institute of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. Use the program to strengthen faith, encourage the discouraged, and inspire dedicated service to you. Provide the leaders of Grow in Grace with wisdom and bless them with the means necessary to ensure the program benefits everyone involved. Amen.

Continue reading “March 15, 2020 Prayers”

New this week – March 15, 2020

From the Board of Stewardship

Who are you serving? Jesus said, “No one can serve two masters. You cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6:24). Either we follow God’s way or our own. There is no middle ground.  And, of course, God’s way leads to glory everlasting. What’s better than that?
Prayer:  Dear Jesus, You are the King of glory, the Lord over all the universe.  I pray that You will strengthen me to serve you only.  Lead me from the temptation to serve anything other than you.  In your name I pray.  Amen.

Change in Distribution

After considerable discussion, the Pastoral Staff and Elders have decided to change the distribution of the bread (wafers).  Due to health concerns, we will no longer put the wafer directly in a person’s mouth.  Please hold your hand out to receive it. Continue reading “New this week – March 15, 2020”