A Devotion from the Pastor’s Devotions
“The Lord is my Shepherd; There is nothing I shall want.” – Psalm 23
Publication of Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church Pierre, SD Newsletter February 2019
I finished it! Once a week as part of my devotion I read a section from the Book of Concord. The Book of Concord is a collection of works that state the Evangelical Lutheran Church’s doctrine as the Bible teaches it. So, it is a faithful testimony to what the Bible teaches. After a year and a half, I finally finished reading this 660-page book!
What did I read the following week after page 660? Page 1. I started the book all over again. It’s not just the Book of Concord that I am reading over again for my devotion. I’m reading through Isaiah—again. I read through 2 Corinthians and Galatians and on track to read the rest of the epistles this month—again. For the rest of my life, I’ll be reading through the Bible again, again, and again.
There is nothing else that we read, hear, and study over and over again for the rest of our lives, but we are constantly going to God’s Word to learn more and more every day. It’s not a book that we read through and never pick up again. We keep going back to it because it’s how our Father speaks to us to comfort us. It’s how Jesus gives gift of salvation. It’s how the Holy Spirit strengthens our faith. It’s as Peter said, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life?
So, after we read through one story or book of the Bible, or the Bible itself; we don’t close it and put it away. We start all over again, reading it through again because the Father doesn’t stop speaking to his children, Jesus doesn’t stop forgiving our sins, and the Holy Spirit doesn’t stop strengthening our faith.
A WORD FROM YOUR PASTOR
A box of chocolates, flowers, and a fancy dinner—how many do people consider that love? With Valentines Day this month, I am sure that love is on everyone’s mind (at least on all the ladies’ minds…)
As a husband, father, pastor, and many other things, how can I show love to my wife, son, parishioners, and to all? How can you show love? It is a question we should consider all the time, not just on Valentines Day. We think love is a box of chocolates, flowers and a fancy dinner because that is what is shown to us as love. But there is a greater love than that which has been shown to you. This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us
(1 Jn 3:16).
Jesus as the groom to the church, your brother, the Good Shepherd, and many other things to you, has shown you love by laying down his own life on the cross. He took up your punishment and forgave you of your sin. We now know that This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins
(1 Jn 4:10). Valentines Day may be when couples especially show each other love, but Good Friday is when God especially showed each of us his love for us.
A Word from your Treasurer
Redeemer 2018 Financial Report
The Lord blessed Redeemer financially in 2018. Redeemer continues to be debt free and we were able to make all of the church’s financial obligations for the year. Although offerings were about $1,500 below the 2018 budget amount, the situation was a lot worse in the Fall with a deficient of $9,700. Through potlucks that raised money for the budget deficit and through increased faithful giving by congregation members, the majority of that deficit was made up.
Offerings for the continued operation of the church were $76,368. In addition, the Building Fund had contributions in the amount of $4,464. Praise be to God and thanks to members for making up our budget deficit.
At the end of the year the account balances are as follows:
General Fund Checking:........................................ $8,076.38
General Fund Savings:.......................................... $1,135.69
Building Fund:..................................................... $24,667.26
At the last voters meeting, a conservative 2019 budget was approved in the amount of $80,606. This was an increase of only $412, a 0.5% increase, from last year’s budget amount. In order to have enough funds for the 2019 budget, offerings this year will need to increase $4,238 (5.25% from last year). An extra few dollars from everyone can easily make up this amount.
We have all been very blessed by God and the money that we receive is one of those blessings.
I Chronicles 29:11 and 14 states; “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor; for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours O Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.’
Knowing that everything that we have comes from God, may we all be cheerful givers in 2019 and beyond. We thank God for his many blessings and pray that he continue to bless our church and congregation into the future.
Treasurer Mark Lauseng--
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Congregational Mission Statement: The mission of Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church is to reach out with the saving gospel of Jesus Christ to call those who are lost, comfort those who mourn, rejoice with those who come to know and believe that Christ’s victory is their victory and to grow together in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ until the final victory is ours.