What’s on your calendar?

kids-1093758__340

Summer of  2019:

  • Sunday Worship services will start at 9:30 a.m. (June – August)
  • Sunday School / Bible Study will be held at 8:30 a.m. (June – August)
  • Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. a Bible Study/Worship hour (June – August)
  • (Our fall schedule begins Sept. 8th: Worship at 10:00, Sunday School at 9:00.)

August:

  • 12th: Millard Schools begin

September:

  • 2nd: Labor Day
  • 8th: fall Sunday schedule begins:
    • 9:00 a.m.  Bible Study & Sunday School
    • 10:00 a.m.  Worship Service
Posted in All posts, FYI, Living Hope, OPL, Women Serving Christ

The work of God

When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me. And you also must testify, for you have been with me from the beginning. ~ John 15:26-27

holy-spiritHave you ever tried to figure out God? Don’t. It’ll blow your mind. One God yet three persons–Father, Son, and Holy Spirit–is that immense.

But God doesn’t expect you or even want you to figure him out. He just wants you to know who he is. And when you know who he is, he wants you to tell others so that they know who God is too. God is that important.

It starts with the Holy Spirit whom Jesus sends from the Father. Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the Counselor and the Spirit of truth, which is really appropriate because otherwise none of us would know the truth of God, especially of Jesus.

Without the Holy Spirit, we’d only know the guilt and shame we carry because of our sin. And we’d only know that, as hard as we try, there’s nothing we can do to take our guilt and shame away. We can never do enough for a holy God. That’s the greatest frustration and predicament in life.

But it is enough when a holy God sends his only Son from heaven and that Son becomes one of us. It is enough when that Son lives the holy life God expects us to live because we have failed so miserably living it. It is enough when that Son sacrifices himself on a cross as payment and punishment for our sin. It is enough when God exchanges his Son’s holy life for our sinful life, giving his holy life to us and dumping our sinful life on him. It is enough when God accepts this exchange and raises his Son from the dead as proof.

This is the true God who goes to such lengths to save mankind. And that’s what the Holy Spirit makes clear to you.

Now comes your witness to others. They need to know what you know. God is that important.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for revealing to me the truth of who you are. Thank you for being my Savior. May others know the same. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

WhatAboutJesus.com

Posted in All posts, Devotions & Meditations, Scripture

Prayers for the start of school

After the festival was over, while his parents were returning home, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but they were unaware of it… After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.
~ Luke 2:43,46,47

preshool bible lessonBless the start of the school year
Lord Jesus, bless the start of this new school year. Bless students and teachers. As you sat at the feet of teachers in the temple when you were a 12-year old boy, so may our children sit at the feet of their teachers and grow in wisdom and love. Let your word be a lamp to their feet and a light for their path now and for the rest of their lives. Amen.

Thank you for our teachers
Lord, we thank you for our teachers. You yourself were a teacher. You know what a difficult task it can be. Use our teachers as your mouthpiece. Give them joy in their labors. Help their students to respect and obey them. Help parents to show their appreciation. Give our teachers extra strength, love, and patience as they begin this new school year. Amen.

Posted in All posts, Devotions & Meditations, Living Hope, OPL, Prayers, Scripture

The Word of God is…

Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates, so that your days and the days of your children may be many in the land that the LORD swore to give your forefathers, as many as the days that the heavens are above the earth. ~ Deuteronomy 11:18-21

bible8

Here is a multiple-choice question for you. Based on these verses of Deuteronomy chapter 11, finish this sentence: “The Word of God is…”

a) Utterly useless—we would be better off not reading it.
b) Hardly helpful—just one of many books we can use for guidance.
c) Slightly significant—perhaps we should consider taking it into account once in a while.
d) Important! Indispensable! Vital for life!

Read through the commands the LORD gives us about his Word in this text one more time, and the answer is clear. “Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds” doesn’t mean “utterly useless.” “Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads” doesn’t mean “hardly helpful.” “Teach them to your children…talk about them at home…write them on your doorframes” doesn’t mean “slightly significant.” The LORD is very clear: The Word of God is important! It’s indispensable! It’s vital for life!

But that brings us to another question. Why? Why is the Word of God so important that he commands us to fix it in our hearts and minds? Why is the Word of God so indispensable that he commands us to teach it to our children? Why is the Word of God so vital for life that he commands us to talk about it when we sit at home and when we walk along the road, when we lie down and when we get up? Why?

It is because the Word of God isn’t just filled with suggestions for an improved life. It isn’t just a guidebook for morality. It isn’t just another man-made guess at what it takes to get right with God. No, the Word of God is truth. It is the truth. It is revelation that has come straight from God about who we truly are and about who he truly is.

His Word shows us who we are apart from Jesus. We are sinners who are doomed to spend eternity in hell, separated from all of God’s love and blessings.

His Word shows us who he is. He is the Savior-God who has rescued us from the punishment our sins deserve through Jesus’ perfect life, sacrificial death, and resurrection.

His Word shows us who we are through faith in Jesus. We are his forgiven children who have the privilege of living for him now and with him forever in heaven.

Now that is a message that is important! And indispensable! And vital for life!

Prayer: LORD God, nothing is more important than your Word. Thank you for giving us so many opportunities to hear it, read it, learn it, and study it. Grant us the faith to believe it and the strength to live it. Amen.

WhatAboutJesus.com

Posted in All posts, Devotions & Meditations, Scripture

With Jesus there is always more

Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, [Jesus] gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children. ~ Matthew 14:19-21

loaves & fish

With Jesus there is always more. More than five thousand people were fed with five loaves and two fish. And leftovers galore—there was more food left over than they had at the beginning.

This miracle is a big deal! It’s one of the few that is recorded in all four Gospels. The repetition means Jesus really wants us to know about it. Why?

Jesus teaches us to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread” (Matthew 6:11). In other words, Christians are to trust God to provide. And what Jesus teaches…he demonstrates by feeding the five thousand. He is able to take care of us and provide everything we need.

This is a simple lesson to know, but it is difficult to believe. Your sinful nature wants you to think that you take care of yourself. The devil does not want you to trust God. He wants you to trust yourself and say, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me” (Deuteronomy 8:17).

But is that true? Who gives you time to work? Who gives you strength to work? Who gives you skills to work? “Remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth” (Deuteronomy 8:18).

Jesus doesn’t work miracles to flaunt his power. He works miracles to show that he is God Almighty in human flesh. Jesus gives us what we need because that is what Jesus does—he gives. He provides his life, death, and resurrection for your salvation. If he can do that, he can do something as simple as provide daily bread.

With Jesus there is always more. Jesus’ compassion for you knows no bounds. No need is too impossible for Christ to meet. No sin is too big for Jesus to forgive. You can trust him with anything and everything!

Prayer: Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his mercy endures forever. Amen.

WhatAboutJesus.com

Posted in All posts, Devotions & Meditations, Scripture

Serving Living Hope for 24 years

6-fatties2Pastor Tom Jeske has served Living Hope for 24 years. He, his wife Liz (a soil science faculty member at Nebraska-Lincoln) and their children moved to Omaha in 1995. Prior to the Nebraska years, Pastor Jeske served Abiding Word, Highlands Ranch, Colorado from 1986-1995. He began his public ministry as a Tutor at Michigan Lutheran Seminary in Saginaw from 1984-1986.

Pastor Jeske has a very busy schedule: weekly worship services at Living Hope, services at Peace Lutheran in Shenandoah, Iowa, Bible studies with adults, teens, new members, hospital visits, retirement home services, visits with shut-ins, and he is actively involved with OPL’s children, parents, and teachers. He is also involved at the district and national levels of our church synod. He is a Bible scholar and continues taking courses to increase his knowledge and understanding of the Holy Scriptures.

When Pastor Jeske stands in front of us on a Sunday morning and presents a Bible-based sermon, remember that he is not a hired employee of Living Hope, but rather he was called by Christ through the Church to serve here as Pastor. Has his time with his family ever been cut short? Has he missed a meal or a special family event because of his commitment to serving the Lord? Definitely. However, his dedication to his calling stirs him to do more so that more people will hear about Jesus’ sacrifice for us and the love of our Heavenly Father.

We thank the Lord for allowing Living Hope to be blessed by Pastor Jeske for so many years. Please keep him and his family in your daily prayers

Posted in All posts, FYI, Living Hope

WELS Connection Videos

connection

Watch monthly WELS Connection Videos here:  https://wels.net/news-media/wels-connection/

 

Posted in All posts