New Pastor Ordination and Installation / New Teacher Installation
Pastor-elect Jacob Limpert and his wife Jessica have made the move to Wonewoc "Pastor-elect" is the official way of referring to a man who has graduated from the seminary and called to congregation but has not yet been ordained and installed. The Limperts are living in the teacherage, which we should probably now call Parsonage 2. They are happy to be here and the soon-to-be pastor is eager to get to work.
We will celebrate their arrival and officially welcome them as the pastor-elect is ordained and installed on Sunday, July 12 at 4pm. While we are still using safe spacing and cleanliness practices, we don't think we'll have to limit the number of people that come to this service. If needed, we'll open up some spaces that we haven't yet used in our services.
While we are very happy to have a second pastor to serve among us and with us, we don't want his arrival to overshadow the fact that we will are doubly blessed to also be adding a new teacher to our faculty. Mrs. Becky Fricke, wife of Pastor Joe Fricke of St. Paul's, Mauston, will also be installed at the same worship service.
As part of our celebration and welcome of these servants of the Lord and his church, we will have a dinner after the service. To help with distancing and keeping things sanitary, the pulled pork meal will be served in containers adn those staying for the meal will be able to eat it in the basement or take it outside to tables set up there. We pray for good weather, but there will be shelters outside for protection from rain or just shade. We hope you can join us!
There will always be opposition to the gospel. There is a temptation to give up and give in when the opposition gets fierce. But the same message of forgiveness and life that we share gives us the courage and strength to continue to share it with others, no matter the opposition.
As we continue the readings from St. Paul's letter to the church in Rome, the fourth word that helps us to understand the Christian faith is not found in the Bible but fits a biblical truth. The word is "Reversal."
If you know someone who would be interested in our services but does not have an internet connection, please let them know that we have DVDs available. They are ready to be picked up each week on Saturday by noon with the next day's worship service on it. They are outside the side door of church, beyond the end of the handicap ramp, in a mailbox mounted on the wall next to the door. Please have them call us at (608) 464-3212 to let us know so that we make enough copies each week. The DVDs are free.
Pentecost 5 Worship Service
Daily Devotion - Thursday, July 9, 2020
Each day we post a devotion to help set our hearts on Jesus.
What does your heart say?
That's a pretty common question. It's in line with the encouragement to "follow your heart." If we're going to take up that encouragement or offer it to someone else, we need to know the state of the heart that's listening to the advice.
It comes naturally to our hearts to want the wrong thing. People follow their sinful hearts to destruction all the time. If we want to do something that's clearly wrong or we want something that's neither good nor bad but we want it for the wrong reasons, that's destructive. It's something that pleases the body in some way but does not benefit the soul and is actually destructive to our faith. Not only is doing or having such things wrong, but the desire is sinful too. The examples are too numerous to mention, but here are some all too common ones:
- When we want money, which is neither good nor bad in itself, but we want it for the wrong reasons--greed and selfishness.
- When lust (a sin in itself) drives us to pornography or to sexual sins of premarital sex, unfaithfulness in marriage, or perversion of any kind.
- When our personal or professional goals take precedence over people.
Following your heart when God doesn't live there or is pushed aside never ends well.
But what if your heart, as in today's verse, has been burdened with the truth of your sin? What if you realize that you've sinned against the almighty God and you know what you deserve is punishment, but you just want to be right with him, you just want to know him as your Father and do the right thing because you know it's right and you know it's what God wants?
Jesus is the answer.
When our hearts hunger and thirst for God and his righteousness, God comes to us with the gospel of the Savior. He shows us that both the blood and the righteousness of Jesus cover us. The blood of Christ covers us in a cleansing shower that has washed our sins away. The righteousness of Christ covers us as if it were a beautiful robe that covers all of our imperfections. When we hear and believe this good news, the Lord never again looks at us and sees what wretched sinners we are, though he knows it full well. No, because of our faith in Jesus, he looks at us and sees his holy and perfect children and he loves us completely and unconditionally.
This is the work of Christ for us. This is how God satisfies those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.
While it can be helpful to have this available during the safer-at-home order, it is something that can be used at any time, or all the time. We are used to the offering being a part of our worship service, but giving online need not take away from thoughtful, heartfelt, faithful giving. In fact, it can be an aid for it.
We have now set up online giving for those who are interested. While many of our members either aren't able to get online or prefer to use their envelopes, we understand that many people today do many transactions online and are very comfortable doing so. It's easy and convenient.
Just so you know what to expect if you use our online giving:
Clicking the link will take you to a third-party website, Faithlife.com. You can donate either with a credit/debit card or by entering your checking account info--your bank routing number and account number. There are minimal processing fees charged to us with each transaction. The fees are taken right out of the gift. Because of greater processing fees with credit/debit cards, it costs less to use your checking account than a debit/credit card. There is also an option for you to cover the processing fees yourself. You simply click a box and, for example, your $25 gift to the church becomes $25.95 in the case of a credit/debit card ($25 to the church and 95 cents in processing fees to Faithlife). Otherwise the church gets $24.05. For using your checking account, the processing fee fro a $25 gift is 56 cents. You don't have to pay the extra for the processing fees. We just want you to understand that the option is available.
If you really like technology and convenience, you can also text "Give" and then the amount you want to give, for example "Give 50" to (608) 424-2445. It will redirect you to our giving webpage to complete the offering, but after you've done it once, you can then give via text without the extra step of going to the giving webpage.
Thank you for your prayers for each other and our called workers and your continued support of our ministry.
Help Available for You
Whether it's a prayer or something else, if you need help of some kind - any kind - and you think that we can help, please call. We're here for each other. We'll do what we can and, if needed, point you in a direction where you can get help that we can't provide. (608) 464-3212.