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WORDS OF FAITH - October 13, 2011

posted Oct 13, 2011, 9:04 PM by Matt Anderson

An occasional newsletter for the members and friends of Faith Lutheran Mission Church of Eau Claire

October 13, 2011

 

Words of Faith Offers New Feature

Twenty months into publication, Words of Faith is happy to offer a new segment – The Pastor’s Message!  This of course is possible because we at Faith Lutheran Mission Church now have a Pastor. 

 

Rev. Nick Henseler leads his first worship service as FLMC’s pastor on Sunday, October 16 at 9 a.m., and we look forward to his first sermon as our pastor.  A special installation service has been set for Sunday, November 13 at 3 p.m., which will hopefully allow many of the pastors who have served us and other friends of the congregation who are otherwise busy on Sunday mornings to join us.  Details of that service will be forthcoming.  Meanwhile, here’s the first installment of…

 

The Pastor’s Message

By Rev. Nick Henseler

 

Ephesians 1:3; “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.”

 

Blessed to be a blessing.

 

If I were to pick a theme that would summarize the congregation of Faith Lutheran Mission Church that would be it! Lori and I certainly feel blessed to be the pastor you have called to shepherd this wonderful flock.

 

Over the last six months of helping out with preaching on Sundays, I have seen the remarkable blessings that FLMC has poured out not only within the church building, but also throughout the Eau Claire community and even internationally. Praise be to God!

 

As all of us move forward in the ministries that our Living Lord has called us to be a part of at FLMC, let’s keep focused on who has empowered us for these ministries, and give Him the glory. There are going to be some wondrous things happening here!  

 

November is the month where we celebrate giving thanks; and at FLMC we have so much to be thankful for. I look forward to celebrating a thankful service with our brothers and sisters at Grace Lutheran at the end of the month and hope to have many more events and projects to be shared with them in the future.

 

Lori and I thank all of you for your warm and loving welcome and we are SO excited for what God has planned for Faith Lutheran Mission Church in the years to come. Praise be to God!

                                                                                                Pr. Nick

Delegation to National LCMC Gathering Return Inspired

Six members of Faith Lutheran Mission Church attended the National Gathering of Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ (LCMC) October 2-5 in Des Moines.  Vern and Betty Doenier, Elaine and Bob Moore, and Jan and LaMoine Parkhurst enjoyed the warmth and excitement of the meeting.  Elaine shared this account of the Gathering:

 

“Growing in Christ” was the theme of LCMC’s 11th Annual Gathering.  The theme verse came from I Corinthians 3:6-7:

I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.”

 

Most of our time together was spent on Spirit-filled worship, growth, learning and family fellowship LCMC-style through worship leaders, keynote speakers, and breakout presentations. They watered seeds already planted, but they also planted news of vision and grace to be grown by God.

 

There were two main points that keep coming to my mind from two of the keynote speakers, Pastor Greg Ogden and from Pastor TJ Anderson (remember we had the privilege of him leading us in worship and preaching at FLMC several months ago).

 

Pastor Ogden asked, “Are we making more Christians than disciples? Are we just approving Jesus or are we a follower, a disciple. There is a distinction of being a true Christian and a true disciple. We have the authority of Jesus as He gave us the great commission to Go....make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. He challenged us to be transformed, to keep putting off the old life and keep putting on the new and to promote discipleship.  His statement of “Think inside the Book,” inspires disciples to get into the scriptures and live the Word in their daily life.  Let's do it!

 

Pastor TJ Anderson in his keynote address asked, “What is God doing in the world? He is on the move.” How is our congregation getting on board? It is not about stuff - it's about people. We have the authority of Jesus Christ to make disciples in our congregations and beyond. He challenged us to get back to our call.  Take back the mission of the church.  “What is prayer like for your congregation,” he asked. We have got to teach people to pray, mentoring people to pray and to make our prayer life come alive. Be “close minded” to the words of the Bible. God is calling us to get into the scriptures, to pray, and to be about making disciples.

 

I have been to many conventions/gatherings but this second one of LCMC that we have attended was the most inspiring, most friendly, most of all it was in the Word all the time. There was so much more to the gathering of course – such excitement! There will be opportunities for you to hear some of the speakers at our church on the screen. Watch for that and plan to hear first-hand what these men and women who spoke at the gathering said about “Growing in Christ.”



First Session on Evangelism Series Draws Well, Despite Packer Competition

Even though the Green Bay Packers were playing on Sunday Night Football, twenty-two determined souls showed up at Faith Lutheran Mission Church Sunday night, October 9th for the first class in a four-part series on Evangelism “How God Grows Churches,” presented live online by the Institute of Lutheran Theology, including six visitors from Grace Lutheran Church.

 

Rev. Dr. Frederick Baltz, the president of ILT, conducted the first course from Galena, Illinois, with individuals and congregations throughout the country tuning in.  Rev. Baltz shared research on behaviors of U.S. Christians, including findings that current Christians in this country are less Biblically-literate, that they are less outreach-oriented, and they are more interested in pragmatic solutions for everyday life than spiritual principals.  Other findings affecting evangelism found that the post-modern insistence on tolerance is winning over the Christian church, and that the influence of Christianity on individual lives is largely invisible.

 

After a discussion of The Great Commission (Matthew 28: 18-19), Pastor Baltz defined terms such as Gospel, Sin, Redemption, Holy Spirit, Witnessing, Christian and Evangelism.  The course continues Sunday, October 16 at 7 p.m. with a focus on the history of evangelism.

 

The session was the first “official” use of our new audio-visual suite, and it passed with flying colors.  The connection was smooth, the laptop linked to our new projector and displayed the visuals clearly on the screen while the audio connection was strong and clear.  It promises to be a great tool for this series and for many future uses in the congregation.

 

“Gifts of Love” Basket Ministry Seeks Donations of Food and Fun Things

The Member Care and Services Committee continues to share “Gifts of Love” baskets to lend comfort and support to members and others, and have developed a list of items that people may donate to help populate the gift baskets.

 

The list of items – which is available on a takeaway sheet in the fellowship hall – includes bookmarks, undated devotional books, notepads, pencils or pens, hand lotions, small stuffed animals, crossword puzzle and word-search books, magazines, boxes of candy, small calendars, playing cards, lip balm, and any other offerings you feel may be appropriate.

 

Katie Evans and Sylvia Miller also invite anyone who would like to contribute baked goods (cookies, bars, small breads) to add to the baskets to give one of them your name and phone number.  They would call you when a basket is going out to someone, and if it would be convenient for you to provide that day, they would happily add the goods to the basket.



C’mon!  Ring Those Bells!

As mentioned last newsletter, 10% of Faith Lutheran Mission Church’s weekly offerings for November are going to support the work of The Salvation Army as it gathers donations to help people in need.  If you would like to do something yourself to help this mission, our partners at Salvation Army are looking for volunteers to ring bells at their Red Kettle stations around the community during the Advent season. 

 

You can register online at www.ringbells.org.  Select “Wisconsin,” then “Eau Claire” and click on the “Bell Ringing 2011” link where you will find a listing of locations.  You can then click on a location to find a list of dates and times.  If you would like to help, but are not comfortable registering online, contact Dean Kallenbach from the Mission Committee for help finding a place to ring your bell!

 

News and Notes

·        The other November mission for Faith Lutheran Mission Church is Ruth House, the homeless shelter for women sponsored by Hope Gospel Mission.  Ten percent of the month’s weekly offerings will go to support that mission.

·        We continue to count on members to clean the church to make it ready for Sunday worship.  Cleaners sign up for a two-week shift, and are responsible for cleaning the carpet in the sanctuary and the tiled floor in the fellowship hall. Other chores include dusting, garbage removal, and assuring the restrooms are tidied and supplied.  The sign-up sheets are near the coffee downstairs.  There is also a sheet for two-week snow removal shifts at that location.

·        The Faith Lutheran Mission Church congregation council holds its monthly regular meeting Monday, October 17th at 7 p.m.  All are welcome!

·        Portal of Prayer devotionals are now available to any member or friend of FLMC.  The current issue goes through December, and is available in the fellowship hall.

·        Grace Lutheran President Anne Carter and Senior Pastor Rev. Rolf Nestingen will be presenting at the Twin Cities WordAlone/Lutheran CORE open meeting on Thursday, October 27 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Golden Valley. They will lead a session entitled “Experience Grace: The Story of One Congregation’s Attempt to Leave the ELCA,” during which they will share the stories of the blessings that congregation has found since aligning with LCMC this spring.

·        Pastor Timothy Duesenberg, who supplied a couple of times last year at Faith Lutheran Mission Church, tells us his LCMC congregation, Gift of Grace Lutheran Church in Holmen, has changed locations.  Starting last Sunday, the congregation began meeting for worship in a meeting room of the Firefighters Credit Union at 510 Amy Drive, just south of Holmen Square.  They also have an office and conference room at the ground level.  Rev. Duesenberg says the new facility will lend stability and consistency for the congregation which started in the summer of 2010.  He asks our prayers of blessing on their new worship center.

 

 

 The Last Word

Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave.”                                                                                 Martin Luther

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