(Communion 1st & 3rd Sundays)
Sunday Worship Service, 8:00 AM, 9:30AM*
Hunters’ Service, November 19, 7:00 PM
Thanksgiving Eve Service, November 25, 7:00 PM
Sunday School & Bible Study 10:45 AM*
Thursday Bible Study (no class on November 26), 10:00 AM*
* Broadcast Live on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/bslcspooner1/:
Sunday 9:30 AM Worship; 10:45 AM Bible Study;
& the 10:00 AM Thursday Bible Study
This year in our monthly articles we are considering favorite verses from the Bible.
This month’s favorite Bible verse is: Psalm 118:1
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.”
Psalm 118 is an “Hallelujah” psalm, meaning “Praise the LORD!” Long ago, God’s people sang the words of this psalm toward the end of their Passover meal. It was a special occasion time for the God’s people to remember how he had rescued their nation from slavery in Egypt; it was a picture of God’s rescue of all people from their slavery to sin. The Passover meal reminded each generation how much God truly loved them.
Would disaster continue to interrupt their lives? Would prosperity be withheld? Would earthly death continue to pick away at their loved ones? Yes, yes, and yes. Yet the people sang out praise and thanks to their merciful God for deliverance from all these trials of life. . . and more: “Because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved” (Ephesians 2:4,5).
It is the custom in North America to gather this time of year to celebrate Thanksgiving. Whether you are with family, friends, or celebrating alone, take the time to give thanks to our Savior-God for his mercy and deliverance from death through Jesus. Jesus shows us that God is good. Even when times are tough, Jesus proves that his love for us endures forever.
From the Pastor
Psalm 116: 12 -14: How can I repay the Lord for all his benefits to me? 13 I will lift up the cup of salvation, and I will call on the name of the Lord. 14 I will fulfill my vows to the Lord, now in the presence of all his people. (Evangelical Heritage Version (EHV) The Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version®, EHV®, © 2019 Wartburg Project, Inc. All rights reserved.)
When you give someone an extravagant gift or when you help someone in need, a phrase that is often spoken is: “I don’t know how I can ever repay you.” Even when that is spoken, the individual will still try to come up with some way in which they can show they are grateful for the gift given.
In this Psalm, the writer tackles that very question. “How can I repay the Lord for all his benefits to me?” This is a question that wants to take into account every single thing that has been granted to them by the Lord. It was things like life, family, job, abilities, rain, sunshine, a place to live, peace, hope, joy and many other blessings that they have outside of and because of salvation. The question also recognizes the source of every thing in their life.
Upon counting the blessings the Lord gave the Psalmist, he writes what his response will be. “I will lift up the cup of salvation, and I will call on the name of the Lord.” The first part of the response is simple. I AM SAVED we hear the Psalmist say. The Lord has given me eternal life. My sins are forgiven. These are all things that are in the cup of salvation. Blood was shed so that I might have true and lasting life.
The second part of his response is a declaration to heaven and to the world who did this. To call on the Name of the Lord is to invoke the Lord and all His Name stands for into every part of their life. Let me speak of your promises and how you fulfilled them. Let me speak of how you have given me this tremendous gift. Let me tell the world all that I know about you.
The last part of the writer’s response is a little bit harder. He says I will do everything that I promised to do for the Lord in front of all his people. Now I am going to, no matter the consequences, live my life for the world to see. I am going to use language that emulates your love in my life. I’m going to have actions that are contrary to the standards of the world. I am going to be bold in my trust in Your salvation. I am going to not shy away from sharing you to people that don’t know you.
This Thanksgiving is shaping up to be one many of us will not forget. This year has clearly had struggles, challenges and yes, even opportunities for all of us. In spite of how this year has gone, and who knows how it will end, you and I can be like the Psalmist. Let us take inventory of what the Lord has done for us. Let us continue to focus on His Promises. Let us respond to the same promises with vigor and courage. The truth is, we can never repay him. We can live for him in every aspect of our lives because of what He has done. May you have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Prayer Circle: Women’s Group will be meeting on Saturday, November 21, at 12:30. We will continue to meet at church to give everyone the proper space.
Our focus is changing this time around, we are going to start a prayer circle. We will meet and pray for those in need. The Prayer Circle meeting will begin with an opening devotion followed with prayer for those in our prayer chain and others. We will likely close with a hymn verse.
Join us! We look forward to getting together and spending some time together in prayer.
Worship services are at 8:00 and 10:30 AM.
The Mask Service is at 8 AM and those attending are reminded to wear masks. If you forget a mask, we have masks available in each row in plastic containers.
The 9:30 Worship service is broadcast on Facebook Live.
To help disinfect between services, please use the paper towels and disinfectant in each row. Simply put two sprays of the disinfectant on the paper towel and then wipe down the hymnals that were used.
Confirmation Class meets Wednesdays at 4 PM.
Bible Studies: The Thursday study meets at 10 AM and is studying the book of Mark. On Sunday our class is studying book of Proverbs. Both studies are carried on Facebook Live for those at home or they can be accessed for study at a later time.
Choir practices Tuesdays at 6 PM.
Teachers Meeting: The Sunday School Teachers meet on Tuesday at 6:00 PM.
Sunday School starts at 10:45 AM with Kids Connection & music during the first part of class.
Kids Connection reminds us of God's promise, “Where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them” (Matthew 18:20). A video is shown each month at the start of Sunday School and features interesting and spiritually uplifting stories about people, places, and programs around WELS. Each episode encourages viewers to “Stay connected to Jesus.”
Copies of the videos are in the church library. Check out a few and stay connected to Jesus!
Available on our website: Go to our church’s website (www.bslcspooner.com) to find the latest bulletin, the calendar, newsletter, and more. Share the web address with a friend; they can read the latest newsletter or listen to a sermon. Members of Beautiful Savior, when they have set up an account, will have access to the church directory and additional information.
Deadline for the Calendar and Newsletter is the third Friday each month. Please submit articles and calendar information in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org by November 20.
Communion: If you have difficulty walking and would like to receive Lord’s Supper where you’re sitting, just ask Pastor or an usher.
Coupons are available in the library area. Take ones you can use. Bring ones you don’t need to share.
Old Meditations and Forward In Christ can have a second life in our WELS prison ministry. When you have finished reading your copy, consider giving it to someone else or return it to church and put it in the box for used copies is in our fellowship hall.
Defibrillator: Our congregation has a defibrillator unit for availably in a health emergency. In case of emergency, it is in the pastor’s office.
Pill Bottles: We are continuing to collect prescription pill bottles to send to mission fields. If you have questions, see Sharon Baker.
The RLC has been a great effort made by our congregation, the many volunteers, and Debra Boelk, who initiated and organized this program, all to God's glory! So many positives have come from it: congregational support; opportunities for others to serve; organized donated materials; and extended the hand of love and friendship to the community.
Since our numbers for the RLC on Wednesday have never went over 3; and a program run by the folks who do the after-school care for the public schools has been set up. We have decided to discontinue the RLC.
There are opportunities for volunteers from our congregation to model Christ's love in this program. You can't have anything religious in your efforts to assist. As Dea will tell you, you may not be able to teach about Jesus, but when a question is asked, you can answer with the hope you have.
One of their greatest needs is for positive, adult role models for the middle school kids that attend.
They have a set schedule; for instance, homework from 9:45-10:45, 11:30-12:15, and again near the end of the day. They offer a stipend for the volunteers. And High School students can volunteer too! If you are interested, contact Karen the head of their program at 715-635-0243 for scheduling and other information.
While we are ending our RLC venture and chalking it up to a learning experience, we are thankful to the whole congregation and especially our volunteers for supporting this experiment in support to families in our area!
Share an Hour With Us!
Join Christian Family Solutions Thursday, November 12, at 7:00 PM. for our first ever Virtual Impact Event (https://christianfamilysolutions.org/events/other-events/). Experience an hour with us and hear the many stories, programs, and opportunities that enable us to make an impact through Christian mental health services- all from the safety and comfort of your own home!
Expect to be entertained, engaged, and equipped to experience life in a better way. Understand how Christian Family Solutions is healing and helping a community in need, and how YOU can play a role:
You will hear firsthand from the counselors who are on the front lines during this current health crisis and time of unrest.
You will find out how Christian Family Solutions embraced the opportunity of telehealth to reach even more people in a time of need.
You will be inspired to share our hopeful and compelling message with loved ones and friends
Read Forward in Christ, the official magazine of WELS, and you will receive the latest news from the synod, gain a Lutheran perspective on current events, hear uplifting stories of faith from across the world, and more every month. The new issues will be placed in your mailbox at church each month.
Marriage Moments Every marriage has its “moments.” That’s why marriages need moments of encouragement and refreshment.
Marriage Moments are short, weekly videos highlighting one Biblical marriage thought accompanied by a discussion question. Find more information at https://welscongregationalservices.net/ministry-resources/marriagemoments/. Couples may subscribe to receive the videos in a weekly e-mail, sign up for the e-mail (https://welscongregationalservices.net/subscriptions/).
Update - Hmong outreach in Vietnam
COVID-19 has affected much of the work in our world mission fields, including the training of
the Hmong Fellowship Church leaders in Vietnam. The WELS Vietnam planning group has been looking for new and creative ways to connect with these church leaders while travel is restricted. Read an update on the work in Vietnam from Rev. Joel Nitz, Hmong Asia missionary.
Read more: https://wels.net/update-hmong-outreach-in-vietnam/.
Home missions faithfully moving forward
Two young WELS mission congregations launched their first public worship services in September. “Even in the face of the difficulties of COVID-19, our home missionaries and members are faithfully sharing God’s Word in weekly worship following appropriate health guidelines,” says Rev. Keith Free, administrator of WELS Home Missions. Read more at https://wels.net/home-missions-faithfully-moving-forward/.
Special Ministries can supply devotions and other spiritual help and teaching tools to military members, inmates, special needs individuals. Click on link below to submit an online referral for someone who can benefit from Special Ministries’ materials.
WELS Military Services uses referrals to maintain contact and offer spiritual resources to the men and women who are serving their country. It’s estimated that more than 1,500 WELS members are in the U.S. military, at U.S. installations and overseas, though only about 20 percent of them are referred for ministry at this crucial time in life. Part of the plan to reach all WELS military personnel is making the referral form easier to find and to submit names.
Find info and referral at wels.net/serving-you/christian-life/special-ministries/online-referral/.
Military members and families who sign up on with the referral form can get a FREE copy of the Christian Service Member’s Handbook. Sign up today!
BOAST IN THE CROSS WITH THANKSGIVING
May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation. Peace and mercy to all who follow this rule—to the Israel of God. Galatians 6:14-16
Why do I serve? Why do I give? “May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Galatians 6:14).
Christians do not use their time, talents, or treasures to acquire their own glory or to increase their own reputation. Christians serve with thanksgiving and give generously to highlight what God has done for them in Jesus. Our service and our gifts place a spotlight on our Savior. The more we consider God’s love for us in Christ, the more we will want to serve and give with a thankful heart. The more we serve and give, the more we will impact others with God’s love. May the cross of Christ motivate each of us to serve and give thanks!
Confirmation, Sunday School & Preschool – Lord, please watch over our students and grant them a faith-filled year as they learn about your great love for them. Guide our teachers as they lead them with your Word and in your love.
Equipping Christian Witnesses – Holy Spirit, thank you for the enthusiasm you give the young men and women who are training to be our pastors, teachers, staff ministers, and missionaries. Guide them as they learn to teach and preach your Word in all situations. Lord, we ask that you move us to generously support the tuition assistance efforts of our congregation and church body. Amen.
Mt. Calvary in Stockbridge, Wis. Continue to bless the leadership of Missionary Jesse Johnston as he preaches and teaches your Word. Grant many blessings according to your will. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Hispanic ministry – Heavenly Father, bless our synod’s ministry efforts on reaching and serving Hispanic neighbors and bless production of Spanish Bible studies, meditations, worship opportunities, and resources of the Cristo Palabra de Vida (Christ, The Word of Life) program. According to your gracious will, bring many people to faith in Jesus and lead those who are already Christians to better understand and believe all that Scripture teaches. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Help The Vine to fulfill its stated purpose, “Connecting people to Jesus and growing together in his Word.” Please protect and guide them during these uncertain times. Amen.
BREAD FOR BEGGARS ONLINE FESTIVAL: Bread for Beggars is featuring WELS musicians nightly live on Facebook; go to https://www.facebook.com/breadforbeggarsfestival/..
The children and I are enjoying the beautiful fall colors.
Well, we were anyway! We are enjoying the snow and the crisp air. It seems that when you are 3,4, and 5 it is never too cold to go outside! They do get disappointed when their snow creations melt!
Our Bible stories this month are about Moses. We will learn about when he was a baby in the basket, how God called him to lead his people out of Egypt, and the Red Sea crossing. We will talk about how God had a plan for him and how God showed his power and glory by sending the plagues and giving the Israelites an escape from the army by parting the sea and allowing them to cross safely while the Egyptian army fell!
When we return from the thanksgiving break, we will start our lessons on Jesus birth!! Our first lesson is about how the angel comes to Mary, and then we will spend two weeks learning about Jesus’ birth in the stable and all of the wonder that goes along with it!!
The children and I would like to wish you all a very happy and safe Thanksgiving!!
God’s many blessings to all of you!!
In his name, Mrs. McQuade
LifeWire | October 22, 2020
Pregnancy care centers served nearly 2M clients in 2019
[Oct. 14, 2020 - Live Action News] The Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) has just released its latest study on the impact of pro-life pregnancy resource centers (PRCs). “Pregnancy Centers Stand the Test of Time” is based on national survey data provided by Care Net, Heartbeat International, and the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates as well as several smaller networks. ... In 2019, 2,700 pregnancy centers were represented in CLI’s report, up slightly from a previous analysis for 2017, which identified only 2,600 PRCs. PRCs identified in the 2019 report provided approximately 1.85 million people in the United States with free services, estimated total value of services at over $266 million. Read more: https://www.liveaction.org/news/report-pregnancy-centers-2-million-2019/.
Christian Life Resources (CLR) NOTE: The pregnancy care centers affiliated with CLR are part of the Heartbeat International network. Click here to find the complete listing of CLR-affiliated centers offering confidential help/mentoring, material assistance, and program referrals for those in an unexpected or unplanned pregnancy situation.
I COULD NOT FIND JESUS, BUT HE FOUND ME
Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus is the name of an autobiography written by a Muslim who used to be an ardent defender of Islam. While we do not agree with all of the writer’s theology, the book describes how Nabeel Quereshi became a believer in Jesus and an evangelist to Muslims. The title of Nabeel’s book could be used for another Muslim man who has become my friend.
*Names changed for security reasons*
Habib attended a madrassah (a Muslim school of learning) for three years. He shared with me:
"I never stopped reading the Koran (the holy book of Islam). One day I read surah 19 (the word for chapter in the Koran) ayah 21 (the word for verse) called Maryam (the Muslim name for Mary). I learned that Issa (the Muslim name for Jesus) was born of a virgin and that he came to this world for the people. When I read this, I was overwhelmed. I wanted to learn more about Jesus. My teacher told me, ‘You don’t need to know about Jesus. Learn about Mohammed. Jesus came for the Israelites, not you.’ In spite of his warning, I read more and more.
The Imam at my mosque called me and asked, ‘Why don’t you come to the prayer times? You used to sing the verses of the Koran for everyone to hear. I heard you became a Christian.' Shortly after that I went to the barbershop in my village and the barber told me, ‘Everyone is complaining about you. They say you do not pray (Muslims have five daily calls to prayer). You do not read the Koran.’ My barber was sympathetic and told me to go to the Catholic church. When I entered the Catholic church, a man confronted me and said, ‘What are you doing here? Muslims are not allowed inside our church. Go to the mosque.’ I told him, ‘I am a Christian.’ He said, ‘We do not share Jesus with Muslim people.’ I did not know what to do.
Soon I met a humble Christian brother who gave me a Bible. I read the Bible day and night. I felt it was written for me. I also became part of a small group of Christians and was baptized. Then I learned that the imam at my mosque—and the village elders—made a sharia (“law") judgment against me. They summoned me to a meeting. They said, ‘If you do not renounce Christianity and return to Islam, we will kick you out of the village.’ I remembered Jesus’ words, ‘Whoever denies me before men, him will I also deny before my Father in heaven’ (Matthew 10:33). I told the imam and the village elders, ‘Yes, I am a Christian. I will never leave Jesus. I will never leave this truth.’
They isolated my family from the rest of the community. My father went to the mosque for the daily calls to prayer, but they would not let him enter the mosque. They told him, ‘You cannot enter the mosque, because your son is a Christian.’ This upset my father very much. He began to beat me and told me I must become a Muslim again. I could not live with my parents so I had to find a way to make a living. I started a study circle and became an academic coach. This was going well until people told the parents of my students that I was a Christian. The parents stopped sending their children. I had no job.
Finally I found work at a fish market where I brought water in buckets to splash on the fish.
Only my mother would talk to me. I shared the gospel with her—and in time she became a Christian. My father became angry with her and deserted her. She was alone and the people in our village began to persecute her. Now I care for my mother. She cooks meals for me. We pray that one day my father will become a Christian too.
God opened the door for me to study at a Bible school. We are working with this Bible school to teach students and to prepare them to be evangelists. I never had such in-depth learning. It was profound. Now I am sharing the gospel in a new area. I am thankful for the bike I was given. I ride this bicycle to six villages where we tell the people about Jesus. We are starting churches in these communities.
Against impossible odds I became a Christian. I was in a madrassah and never stopped reading the Koran. I could not find Jesus, but he found me. Now I want the whole world to know about Jesus."
Written by WELS' friendly counselor to South Asia
You may read the reminder of the article at https://wels.net/i-could-not-find-jesus-but-he-found-me/.