“So then, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. The new has come! And all these things are from God.” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18)
Have you looked out the window the last couple of weeks? What changes have you noticed? One change that is very obvious at this time of the year is the changing of the color of the leaves. Those plain green leaves of the summer have changed into the bright colors of red, yellow and orange. As you drive around the city and through the countryside, you were able to witness this wonderful change that happens every fall. Words can hardly explain how beautiful this changing of the leaves is. But we all know that this change is very temporary, because shortly all those brightly colored leaves will be on the ground and the trees will be bare until next spring.
Looking at this changing of the color of the leaves is beautiful and wonderful, but it pales in comparison to the change that God has worked in our sinful hearts. The Apostle Paul writes, ““So then, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away. The new has come! And all these things are from God.” What Paul is describing is a change from something old and ugly to something that is new and beautiful. The change is the change which occurred in our hearts. Before God came into our hearts there was nothing good at all in our hearts. It was only full of sin.
Paul calls that “the old” that passed away. But when Jesus came into our hearts through the power of the Holy Spirit our hearts changed. The Holy Spirit lives in our hearts through faith. This is the “new creation” that Paul was describing. Our hearts were made new and beautiful. Our hearts were filled with God’s forgiving love which is found in Jesus alone.
But how did this change happen? This change happened as God sent his one and only Son to live a perfect life on this earth in our place and to die a perfect death some 2000 years ago on a cross outside the city of Jerusalem. This change happened as God sent the Holy Spirit out into the world to share this wonderful Gospel news with all people. This change occurred as God led us to see by faith that we could not and cannot save ourselves, but by God’s grace alone we are made children in God’s family.
But let’s go back to the picture of the changing of the color of the leaves. As we said earlier those leaves change, but the change in beauty is only temporary. The leaves will all fall off. This is not the case for the change that has been work in our hearts. With God’s help and through his powerful Gospel found in his Word, God will keep this change going our whole life on this earth. God’s change will last until he calls us to be with him in heaven. We can know and trust that God’s forgiving love will be at work in our hearts forever. Thank you to our Triune God who worked this great change and who continues to work through his Gospel found in his Word and in the Sacraments of Baptism and Lord's Supper. To God Be All Glory And Praise!
— Pastor Gartner
We will be starting two new Bible Classes. Pastor Gartner will be starting a new class on Sunday mornings which will make use of the new Synod video, "To The Ends of The Earth". Through this movie which is based on Paul's missionary work in the city of Philippi, we will see how God wants to use all of us to reach out to the many lost souls of this world with God's saving Gospel. Pastor Frey will be starting a new class on Monday mornings at 8:00 am or Tuesday evenings at 5:30 pm. on the the book "The Lutheran Narrow Middle Following The Scriptural Road" by Pastor Daniel M. Deutschlander. This study will demonstrate how human reason must not be used to override the words of Scripture. We'll look at a number of seemingly contradictory teachings in the Bible and see how to apply them to our lives by letting each teaching stand alone, without trying to resolve them by the use of our reason or human logic. Please plan to join us on Sunday mornings and on Monday or Tuesday as we seek to grow stronger in our faith and in our Christian living.
Ladies Craft Night
Just a reminder for all those who signed up to make the pumpkin centerpiece on Sunday, November 11 from 4 p.m.-6 p.m. Cost of the craft is $8 and can be paid on the 11th. Hope to see you there! Babysitting is being provided for those who requested it.
WELS Interactive Faith
On November 7th a New Interactive Faith will begin. Interactive Faith is an online Bible study led by WELS Pastors/Professors. This streaming and interactive study will be held on Wednesday evenings in November at 6:00 or 8:00 pm. Don’t worry—if you miss a class you can always watch it later. This fall, Pastor Eric Roecker, director of the WELS Commission on Evangelism, will use video vignettes from the new movie To the Ends of the Earth to guide our discussion. Our prayer is that these lessons will make you more confident in your conversations with those who do not yet know their Savior.
For more information, click the link below.
We want to send care packages to our members that are away at college and for any family members who are in the service. If you would like to donate items for these packages, we need crackers, hot chocolate, candies and other snack type food. If you would like to give a monetary gift that will then be used to purchase items for the care packages, please put it in an envelope marked Care Packages and place in the offering plate. Please have all items at church by Monday, November 12. Parents of students and service men/women, please make sure we have their address. Questions, contact one of the Pastors or the church office.
Ladies Bible Study and LWMS
Tuesday November 13 at 1:00 pm all the ladies are invited for a Bible study and then to hear a brief update on the work the ladies are doing a well as what is going on with the Lutheran Women's Missionary Society (LWMS). Please note the new time and format. The Bible Study will begin right at 1:00 pm with a short meeting to follow. There will be no lunch served.