Pastor Thure Martinsen

This Week at Golden Hills: Jan. 4, 2020

Web Master - Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Have a Wonderful New Year!       

Each year, we are given a new beginning. We call it New Year.

Of course we know that much of what happens is determined by the hundreds of little choices we have already made in our life, but it is a good time to reevaluate where you are headed.

Do you need to begin making healthier choices?

Do you need to approach things differently in your finances?

Are there areas in your relationships with your family you need change direction?

And of course, the most important consideration of all. Do you need to chart a new course of action related to your life with Jesus?

In all these areas, Jesus is ready to step in and lead. He is only waiting for your permission. He said:

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30, NLT)

This is a wonderful promise. All it asks of you is that you step into life with Him and allow Him to lead. This will involve some changes. It is unreasonable to assume that you can just continue living the way you have and expect different results.

In order to experience the rest Jesus promises, you must follow where He leads you. This means saying “yes” to things He is asking for you to change.

But, He also promises He will walk with you and help you with any change He directs. He does not leave you to walk any part of this journey alone.

May this New Year be one filled with positive changes that will enable you to be healthier, more generous, closer to the people you love, and walking in the peace Jesus offers!

Wall of Love

Our church board recently approved a new community focus project call the Wall of Love. Each month we will collect needed items for a service agency in our community.

We are focusing on Project Harmony during the month of January.

Thanks to members and friends donating their empty bottles after enjoying their favorite flavor of Sparkling ICE, we have enough to make another batch of calming bottles for the kids at Project Harmony again. We will plan to do this following the Potluck this Sabbath (Jan. 4). Please plan to stay by for a little bit to help.

In addition to the calming bottles, they are in critical need of leggings of all sizes for girls and women (they are in shortest supply of the larger sizes). These are available at Walmart and most other department stores for under $20. Please consider buying a pair or two and dropping them off here at church on or before January 25.

The Future of our Church

On the first Sabbath in February (Feb. 1), we will be holding a meeting following Potluck to evaluate where we are as a church and look at where we would like go in the future. Bring your thoughts and ideas on any aspect of church life: our worship service, the sermons, community service opportunities, evangelism, etc. Please write down your ideas and plan to be a part of this important event!

Life Line Screening

Life Line Screening, a leading provider of community-based preventive health screenings will be in our community again on Wednesday, April 29, 2020 here at our Church . Ultrasound screenings to Identify risk factors for Cardiovascular disease include; Carotid Artery (plaque buildup-a leading cause of stroke), Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (an enlargement or weak area in the main blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body), Peripheral Arterial Disease (hardening of the arteries in the legs), a Heart Rhythm Screening (an EKG to detect Atrial Fibrillation-irregular heartbeat) and an Osteoporosis Risk Assessment for men and women. Being proactive about your health by knowing your risks helps you and your doctor address problems early. Register online TODAY by clicking here and receive your “Community Circle” discount and your Preferred Appointment!

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 5:07 pm

This Sabbath at Church

    • Sabbath School (10:00 am)
      • Traditional Sabbath School Class, Church Sanctuary: Studying the current Sabbath School Lesson (click here to read it on-line).
      • Alternative Sabbath School Class, Hearth Room – The Haystacks Church: We will be starting a new study this Sabbath entitled The Haystacks Church. It will based on a book titled The Haystacks Church. To purchase a paper copy of this book, click here. To purchase an e-book for Apple Products, click here; for a Kindle version, click here; or for a nook book, click here.
    • Worship Service (11:15 am) – This Sabbath our sermon will be presented by John Roney, our former student pastor.
      • To download or print a PDF copy of last weeks sermon titled A Yoke?, click here . You can watch it by clicking here .
    • Potluck After Church this Sabbath in the Fellowship Hall. If you’re a member, please plan to bring your favorite dish to feed your family plus a few more. If you’re a guest, just show up and enjoy it!
    • Calming Bottle Assembly following Potluck – Please plan to stay after potluck for a little while to help prepare Calming Bottles for Project Harmony.

Pathfinders & Adventurers meet this Monday (Jan. 6) at 6:30 PM. For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Pathfinder Calendar.
    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Adventurer Calendar.

No Prayer Meeting this Tuesday (Jan. 7). We will begin again one week from Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

Church Board meets one week from Tuesday (Jan. 14) at 7:15 pm in the Board Room of the Education Annex. If you have any items that need to be considered, please contact our Head Elder, Kalvin Tuel (e-mail or 402-201-0630).

Chili Cook-Off will take place two weeks from Saturday night (Jan. 18). It will take place in our Fellowship Hall beginning at 5:30 pm.

Deadline for Project Harmony Leggings: All leggings for Project Harmony should be brought to church no later than Sabbath, Jan. 25. For more information, see above.

Church Planning Meeting, Sabbath, February 1 following Potluck. See above for more information.

Life Line Screening will be here at our Church April 29, 2020. Click here to register. See above for more details.

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

Bible Gateway 2019 on Parade: The year 2019 saw an American rapper infuse his latest album with references to biblical themes, a horror movie spark international interest in the Bible, a children’s TV host raise awareness of sacred ideas, and the commemoration of communion on the Moon. As all the news transpired, Bible Gateway helped you process it through a scriptural lens. (Click here to read more.)

Jesus is True Wisdom: Sharon Kaselonis, author of Jesus, Day by Day: A One-Year, Through-the-Bible Devotional to Help You See Him on Every Page, says, "As you read the Scriptures today, recognize Jesus as wisdom personified in the pages of Proverbs. (Click here to read more.)

Learn about and download the free award-winning Bible Gateway App by clicking here.

Check Out the entire Weekly Brief by clicking here. To subscribe to any one of their many email newsletters and Bible Studies, click here.

Remind App

We are using the Remind App as an emergency contact system for our church. Through it, we can easily and quickly send out a text message to everyone on the system. One way we would use it would be to notify you if church is cancelled due to bad weather. The App is designed to work in a school setting so you will see education terminology as you sign up. Our church is considered a class in this system.

To sign up, choose one of the methods below:

    • If you have a smartphone, you can get push notifications. On your iPhone or Android phone open your web browser and go to: rmd.at/tmartinse. Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind. You will be prompted to download the mobile app.
    • If you don’t have a smart phone, you will get text notifications. Text the message @tmartinse to the number 81010. If you’re having trouble with 81010, try texting @tmartinse to (941) 787-5566.

Outreach/Community Service Opportunities

Hospice Volunteers are needed to provide companionship and support for individuals living with terminal illnesses and their families. Volunteers choose the hours they are able to serve and determine the geographical location in metro Omaha/Council Bluffs and surrounding area. Volunteer education will take place in February and is sponsored by CHI Health at Home Hospice, VNA Hospice, and Hospice House – The Josie Harper Residence . Please call one of the agencies below to request an application. Space is limited.

Ride to Church Needed: An older gentleman, who lives near L Street and 132nd Street (not too far from the Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Target), is looking for a fairly regular ride to church on Sabbath mornings. If you live out that direction and would be willing to explore the possibilities, please contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333).

Help for Survivors of Current Natural Disasters: ADRA (Adventist Development and Relief Agency) works with other disaster relief agencies to assist survivors of the many current natural disasters. To find out how you can help, click here.

Used Stamps Needed! Your used stamps can help Christian Record Services for the Blind raise money. Just tear them off the envelope, being careful to include the entire stamp and bring them to church. Put them into the container provided out on the table and we will take care of getting them where they need to go.

Miscellaneous Information

Breakfast at Church: We are no longer serving breakfast at Church on Sabbath mornings. If this is something you would like to see come back and would be willing to coordinate it, please let Kalvin Tuel or Pastor T. know.

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch them by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church.

On-Line Church Directory Information: Now you can sync our church directory directly to your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire device with a Free App! You can search for other members – and then email, call, or text right from the directory app. It’s easy!

    1. Go to your device’s App Store. (Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    2. Search for Instant Church Directory.
    3. Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    4. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the login process.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia. To access a PDF copy of the most recent update, click here . To access a PDF copy that includes all we have received from 2019, click here; 2018, click here; 2017, click here; 2016, click here;  2013-2015, click here. To check out their website, click here. Don’t forget to check out Sharing Dots for Kids. To sign up for their e-mail newsletter, click here.

Free Estate Planning & Wills: Norm Zimmerman, Trust Director for the Kansas Nebraska Conference, is available by appointment to assist anyone who needs Estate Planning, Wills, etc. For more information contact Norm (402-617-2001).

On-Line Giving Available! Our church offers on-line giving through our website. If you would prefer to give electronically or if you are going to be away and want to stay up-to-date with your giving, click here. Adventist Giving now has an App you can download directly to your smart phone to make the process even easier. For an iPhone, click here. For Android phones, click here.

Our Church E-Mail Newsletter, Directly to Your Computer! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided in the lower right-hand portion of our church home page.

Adobe Reader: To read and download many of the documents we post here you need Adobe Reader installed on your computer. To get a free copy of the latest version, click here.

Adventist Screening Verification

Verified Volunteers has changed their name to Sterling Volunteers. The NAD has decided to select a parent name that can remain in their publications and website landing pages on a permanent basis. The name chosen for all our background screening and training needs is Adventist Screening Verification .

In cooperation with the Kansas Nebraska Conference, we are working with Adventist Screening Verification to provide background checks and on-line education for our church officers and everyone who works with our children. This helps ensure that we have some training to help us recognize and avoid situations that would put our children at risk.

In addition to our elected Church Officers, everyone who works with Pathfinders and Adventurers, Children’s or Youth Sabbath School Classes, Children’s Church, and VBS must go through this training and submit to a background check (there is no cost to you or to our church). It will take about an hour of your time.

To go to the website where you begin this process, click here and then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Last Week’s Sermon

To download or print a PDF copy of last weeks sermon titled A Yoke?, click here. You can watch it by clicking here.

Prayer Watch

There are several people and concerns that we are praying about, for more information about any of these or to request something to be added to our list, feel free to contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333)

    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • Elma Johannessen is scheduled to be released from the hospital to a rehab center in the next few days. When we find out which rehab center she is at, we will ley you know. She is currently at Nebraska Medicine, Bellevue in Room 420. Please continue to pray for her.
    • Paul Lostaglia finished his rehab and is scheduled to be discharged to home today (Tuesday, 12/31).
    • Donna Parker is still in the hospital at CHI Health – Bergan Mercy. Gary is also in the hospital there following a fall which resulted in a couple of staples in his head and a concussion. Please continue to pray for them.
    • Bill Agan will begin radiation therapy for the cancer in his throat early in the new year. Please pray for his recovery.
    • Raul Calderon, Larry Carter, Ron Egger, Gary Jeffers, Michael McKinnie, Dusty Mayhew, Floyd Morrison, Darin Stotler, Irvin Surber, Christian Willey, Gary Wilson, & Thaddeus Woolsey (inmates Pastor T. has is studying with)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Mary Jane Agan’s father, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), Heather Boulais (UC Student), Tammy Burville (Amy Newman-Holub’s cousin), Tanya Callahan (Elizabeth Knutson’s sister), Brenda Carroll (Judy Carroll’s sister-in-law), Dennis Cushman, Emma (Mary Jane Agan’s granddaughter), Tammy Gagne, John Hiers, Jane (Mary Jane Agan’s daughter-in-law), Janice (Elma’s friend), Dick & June Klein, Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Paul Lostaglia, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Donna & Gary Parker, Sheila and her brother Paul, Dane Swensen, Donald & JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s father and step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor’s Contact Information

To contact Pastor T, leave him a message by clicking here.  

This Week at Golden Hills: Dec. 28, 2019

Web Master - Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Merry Christmas!   

It’s hard to believe we have made it around the calendar to Christmas again. In all the business of this season, take some time to remember that we are celebrating Jesus’ birthday (not yours or mine).

And take some time to reflect on what Jesus coming to this world means in terms of your life and eternity.

May you be blessed and be a blessing as you celebrate Jesus’ birth this year!

Where Else?

Don Jacobsen's blog last weekend was titled Where Else?. He has some beautiful thoughts on Christmas, including a song to listen to (it was a song I had not heard before).

I love the whole season … the lights, the trees, the music, the re-reading of the story, the family gatherings … all of it. However, the real reason I enjoy it so much is because of what it represents. Without Christmas, I would have nothing to sing about, and how could I possibly even understand the word joy? The lights and “stuff” are just earthy symbols of the time of year when much of the whole world pauses and collectively considers the reality of the birth of Christ and what that birth actually means.

Without His birth He would not have fulfilled the hundreds of prophecies predicted about Him. Without His birth, He would not have been able to relate to us as “God in flesh”… Immanuel, God with us. God for us. The entire hope of the human family was wrapped in rags and laid in a feeding trough. (Click here to continue reading this online.)

Click here to sign up to receive the HOPE Heals weekly messages. Click here to go to their website, Hope-Heals.org.

Breakfast at Church

This will be the last Sabbath we will be serving breakfast at Church on Sabbaths other than Potluck Sabbath. If this is something you would like to see continue and would be willing to coordinate it, please let Kalvin Tuel or Pastor T. know.

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 5:01 pm

This Sabbath at Church

    • Breakfast in the Fellowship Hall: 9:20 – 9:50 am
    • Sabbath School (10:00 am)
      • Traditional Sabbath School Class, Church Sanctuary: Studying the current Sabbath School Lesson (click here to read it on-line).
      • Alternative Sabbath School Class, Hearth Room – The Haystacks Church: We will be starting a new study the first week of January, entitled The Haystacks Church. It will based on a book titled The Haystacks Church. To purchase a paper copy of this book, click here. To purchase an e-book for Apple Products, click here; for a Kindle version, click here; or for a nook book, click here.

    • Worship Service (11:15 am) – How do you approach God’s will and salvation? This Sabbath Pastor T will explore this topic as he shares a message titled L, O, or LOL.

No Pathfinders or Adventurers (Dec. 30). We will begin again on January 6. For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Pathfinder Calendar.
    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Adventurer Calendar.

No Prayer Meeting this Tuesday (Dec. 31). We will begin again following the holidays on Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

New Year’s Eve, Tuesday, Dec. 31.

New Year’s Day, Wednesday, Jan. 1.

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

Blessed to Bless: What does it mean to flip the blessing by blessing others in the way God has blessed us? How can we turn giving into a game and experience an exponential joy in the process? What does the Bible say about blessings? Bible Gateway interviewed Mark Batterson about his book, Double Blessing: How to Get It. How to Give It. (Click here to read more.)

Learning the Promises of God One Day at a Time: Times of change, trouble, or doubt can leave us looking for answers, wondering what God says about our situation. Millions have trusted Jack Countryman books based on the promises of God. His first 365-day devotional – God's Promises® Every Day – brings encouragement and assurance through Scripture and writings about the promises God has for your life. Bible Gateway interviewed Jack Countryman about his book, God's Promises Every Day: 365 Day Devotional. (Click here to read more.)

What Is the Purpose of My Pain? Seth Haines, author of  The Book of Waking Up: Experiencing the Divine Love That Reorders a Life, asks, "Is emotional pain a gift? Is it a signaler, an opportunity to invite the great God of healing and comfort to be with us?” (Click here to read more.)

Happy Hanukkah – Know Why It’s Important: The purpose and traditions of Hanukkah are so intriguing, that Christians should appreciate this festival more than a passing acknowledgment of the season. (Click here to read more.)

Learn More About the Genealogy of Jesus this Christmas: Sometimes it’s easy to overlook how miraculous Jesus’ birth was, even while we celebrate his arrival on Christmas. But the more closely you read into the genealogies in the Gospels, the more fully you can come to appreciate the fulfillment of God’s covenant. (Click here to read more.)

Learn about and download the free award-winning Bible Gateway App by clicking here.

Check Out the entire Weekly Brief by clicking here. To subscribe to any one of their many email newsletters and Bible Studies, click here.

Remind App

We are using the Remind App as an emergency contact system for our church. Through it, we can easily and quickly send out a text message to everyone on the system. One way we would use it would be to notify you if church is cancelled due to bad weather. The App is designed to work in a school setting so you will see education terminology as you sign up. Our church is considered a class in this system.

To sign up, choose one of the methods below:

    • If you have a smartphone, you can get push notifications. On your iPhone or Android phone open your web browser and go to: rmd.at/tmartinse. Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind. You will be prompted to download the mobile app.
    • If you don’t have a smart phone, you will get text notifications. Text the message @tmartinse to the number 81010. If you’re having trouble with 81010, try texting @tmartinse to (941) 787-5566.

Outreach/Community Service Opportunities

Hospice Volunteers are needed to provide companionship and support for individuals living with terminal illnesses and their families. Volunteers choose the hours they are able to serve and determine the geographical location in metro Omaha/Council Bluffs and surrounding area. Volunteer education will take place in February and is sponsored by CHI Health at Home Hospice, VNA Hospice, and Hospice House – The Josie Harper Residence . Please call one of the agencies below to request an application. Space is limited.

Ride to Church Needed: An older gentleman, who lives near L Street and 132nd Street (not too far from the Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Target), is looking for a fairly regular ride to church on Sabbath mornings. If you live out that direction and would be willing to explore the possibilities, please contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333).

Help for Survivors of Current Natural Disasters: ADRA (Adventist Development and Relief Agency) works with other disaster relief agencies to assist survivors of the many current natural disasters. To find out how you can help, click here.

Used Stamps Needed! Your used stamps can help Christian Record Services for the Blind raise money. Just tear them off the envelope, being careful to include the entire stamp and bring them to church. Put them into the container provided out on the table and we will take care of getting them where they need to go.

Miscellaneous Information

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch them by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church.

On-Line Church Directory Information: Now you can sync our church directory directly to your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire device with a Free App! You can search for other members – and then email, call, or text right from the directory app. It’s easy!

    1. Go to your device’s App Store. (Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    2. Search for Instant Church Directory.
    3. Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    4. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the login process.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia. To access a PDF copy of the most recent update, click here . To access a PDF copy that includes all we have received from 2019, click here; 2018, click here; 2017, click here; 2016, click here;  2013-2015, click here. To check out their website, click here. Don’t forget to check out Sharing Dots for Kids. To sign up for their e-mail newsletter, click here.

Free Estate Planning & Wills: Norm Zimmerman, Trust Director for the Kansas Nebraska Conference, is available by appointment to assist anyone who needs Estate Planning, Wills, etc. For more information contact Norm (402-617-2001).

On-Line Giving Available! Our church offers on-line giving through our website. If you would prefer to give electronically or if you are going to be away and want to stay up-to-date with your giving, click here. Adventist Giving now has an App you can download directly to your smart phone to make the process even easier. For an iPhone, click here. For Android phones, click here.

Our Church E-Mail Newsletter, Directly to Your Computer! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided in the lower right-hand portion of our church home page.

Adobe Reader: To read and download many of the documents we post here you need Adobe Reader installed on your computer. To get a free copy of the latest version, click here.

Adventist Screening Verification

Verified Volunteers has changed their name to Sterling Volunteers. The NAD has decided to select a parent name that can remain in their publications and website landing pages on a permanent basis. The name chosen for all our background screening and training needs is Adventist Screening Verification .

In cooperation with the Kansas Nebraska Conference, we are working with Adventist Screening Verification to provide background checks and on-line education for our church officers and everyone who works with our children. This helps ensure that we have some training to help us recognize and avoid situations that would put our children at risk.

In addition to our elected Church Officers, everyone who works with Pathfinders and Adventurers, Children’s or Youth Sabbath School Classes, Children’s Church, and VBS must go through this training and submit to a background check (there is no cost to you or to our church). It will take about an hour of your time.

To go to the website where you begin this process, click here and then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Prayer Watch

There are several people and concerns that we are praying about, for more information about any of these or to request something to be added to our list, feel free to contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333)

    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • Elma Johannessen is at Nebraska Medicine – Bellevue, room 420. She enjoys visitors. Please continue to pray for her.
    • Paul Lostaglia is currently in a rehab program as he recovers from his triple by-pass surgery He is at Hillcrest Millard (13225 Westwood Lane, Omaha, NE 68144). The phone number for his room is 531-365-3069. He enjoys visitors as well. Please continue to pray for him.
    • Donna Parker is back in the hospital at CHI Health – Bergan Mercy. Please continue to pray for her and Gary.
    • Bill Agan will begin radiation therapy for the cancer in his throat early in the new year. Please pray for his recovery.
    • Raul Calderon, Larry Carter, Ron Egger, Gary Jeffers, Michael McKinnie, Dusty Mayhew, Floyd Morrison, Darin Stotler, Irvin Surber, Christian Willey, Gary Wilson, & Thaddeus Woolsey (inmates Pastor T. has is studying with)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Mary Jane Agan’s father, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), Heather Boulais (UC Student), Tammy Burville (Amy Newman-Holub’s cousin), Tanya Callahan (Elizabeth Knutson’s sister), Brenda Carroll (Judy Carroll’s sister-in-law), Dennis Cushman, Emma (Mary Jane Agan’s granddaughter), Tammy Gagne, John Hiers, Jane (Mary Jane Agan’s daughter-in-law), Janice (Elma’s friend), Dick & June Klein, Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Paul Lostaglia, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Donna & Gary Parker, Sheila and her brother Paul, Dane Swensen, Donald & JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s father and step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor’s Contact Information

To contact Pastor T, leave him a message by clicking here.  

This Week at Golden Hills: Dec. 21, 2019

Web Master - Thursday, December 19, 2019

Early Christmas     

We had an early Christmas this year as Jonathan and Corrine visited us from Tacoma, Washington this past weekend.

We had such a good time together. We hardly left the house – except to go out and eat once. We visited, we made cookies, we put together puzzles (2,500 pieces worth of a couple of the most challenging ones I have ever worked on), we looked at pictures – we just enjoyed being together.

In Matthew, where it tells about Joseph’s dream and God’s instructions for naming Jesus, it gives this parenthetical statement:

All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet:

“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel,” (see Isaiah 7:14 & 8:8-10)

 which means “God is with us.” (Matthew 1:22-23, NLT)

Jesus came here as Immanuel; God with us! There is nothing God wants more that to be with you and me, and for us to be with Him!

The greatest gift you can give Jesus this year on His birthday (actually on any day) is to just be with Him.

Hang out with Him a bit each morning and share thoughts and problems with Him. Talk to Him about the things that matter to you. Tell Him your joys and your troubles. Look for His answers in the Bible.

Then, invite Him to lead you through your day.

It brings me great joy is when my kids want to spend time with me. You can bring that joy to God. And, you will find yourself blessed beyond measure.

Member Updates

Elma Johannessen has improved enough to be removed from the ventilator (Tuesday evening) and may move out of ICU today (Thursday). She is at Nebraska Medicine – Bellevue. She enjoys visitors and will be able to have them as soon as she is moved out of ICU. Please continue to pray for her complete recovery.

Paul Lostaglia is currently in a rehab program as he recovers from his triple by-pass surgery. He is at Hillcrest Millard (13225 Westwood Lane, Omaha, NE 68144). The phone number for his room is 531-365-3069. He enjoys visitors as well. Please continue to pray for him.

Donna Parker is back in the hospital at CHI Health – Bergan Mercy. Please continue to pray for her and Gary.

Hospice Volunteers Needed

Hospice Volunteers are needed to provide companionship and support for individuals living with terminal illnesses and their families. Volunteers choose the hours they are able to serve and determine the geographical location in metro Omaha/Council Bluffs and surrounding area. Volunteer education will take place in February and is sponsored by CHI Health at Home Hospice, VNA Hospice, and Hospice House – The Josie Harper Residence . Please call one of the agencies below to request an application. Space is limited.

Ride to Church Needed

An older gentleman, who lives near L Street and 132nd Street (not too far from the Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Target), is looking for a fairly regular ride to church on Sabbath mornings. If you live out that direction and would be willing to explore the possibilities, please contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333).

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 4:57 pm

This Sabbath at Church

    • Sabbath School (10:00 am)
      • Traditional Sabbath School Class, Church Sanctuary: Studying the current Sabbath School Lesson (click here to read it on-line).
      • Alternative Sabbath School Class, Hearth Room – Quest for Glory: So You Want To Be A Hero: We will look at the individual stories of the people mentioned in Hebrews 11 to see what made them a hero of faith and how we can apply those principles to our lives. Click here to see a basic outline of our study.
    • Worship Service (11:15 am) – This Sabbath we will enjoy our annual Christmas Musical worship service coordinated by Rita Swensen.

No Pathfinders or Adventurers (Dec. 23). We will begin again on January 6. For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Pathfinder Calendar.
    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Adventurer Calendar.

No Prayer Meeting this Tuesday. We will begin again following the holidays on Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

Christmas Eve, Tuesday, Dec. 24.

Christmas Day, Wednesday, Dec. 25.

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

America’s Religious History: Since the founding of America centuries ago, Americans have been a pervasively religious people. What is the theological and ethnic diversity and enduring strength of American religion in general, and Christianity and evangelical faith in particular? How have faith commitments and actions shaped the nation? Bible Gateway interviewed Thomas S. Kidd, author of America's Religious History. (Click here to read more.)

Avoid Hurry and Stay Healthy: Who are you becoming? Is the rush of everyday life wearing you down and drawing you away from the fulfilling life in Christ? Is hurry the great enemy of your spiritual life? Bible Gateway interviewed John Mark Comer about his book, The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry: How to Stay Emotionally Healthy and Spiritually Alive in the Chaos of the Modern World. (Click here to read more.)

The Year I Dreaded Christmas: Walter Wangerin Jr., author of  Wounds Are Where the Light Enters: Stories of God’s Intrusive Grace, writes, "On Christmas Eve Day 1955 we gathered at our front windows to watch for the mare and her wagon, and for the milkman to come bustling up the front walk. Mother wanted to be shed of us and our wild joy so that she could bake cookies in peace.” (Click here to read more.)

Learn about and download the free award-winning Bible Gateway App by clicking here.

Check Out the entire Weekly Brief by clicking here. To subscribe to any one of their many email newsletters and Bible Studies, click here.

Remind App

We are using the Remind App as an emergency contact system for our church. Through it, we can easily and quickly send out a text message to everyone on the system. One way we would use it would be to notify you if church is cancelled due to bad weather. The App is designed to work in a school setting so you will see education terminology as you sign up. Our church is considered a class in this system.

To sign up, choose one of the methods below:

    • If you have a smartphone, you can get push notifications. On your iPhone or Android phone open your web browser and go to: rmd.at/tmartinse. Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind. You will be prompted to download the mobile app.
    • If you don’t have a smart phone, you will get text notifications. Text the message @tmartinse to the number 81010. If you’re having trouble with 81010, try texting @tmartinse to (941) 787-5566.

Outreach/Community Service Opportunities

Help for Survivors of Current Natural Disasters: ADRA (Adventist Development and Relief Agency) works with other disaster relief agencies to assist survivors of the many current natural disasters. To find out how you can help, click here.

Used Stamps Needed! Your used stamps can help Christian Record Services for the Blind raise money. Just tear them off the envelope, being careful to include the entire stamp and bring them to church. Put them into the container provided out on the table and we will take care of getting them where they need to go.

Miscellaneous Information

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch them by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church.

On-Line Church Directory Information: Now you can sync our church directory directly to your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire device with a Free App! You can search for other members – and then email, call, or text right from the directory app. It’s easy!

    1. Go to your device’s App Store. (Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    2. Search for Instant Church Directory.
    3. Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    4. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the login process.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia. To access a PDF copy of the most recent update, click here . To access a PDF copy that includes all we have received from 2019, click here; 2018, click here; 2017, click here; 2016, click here;  2013-2015, click here. To check out their website, click here. Don’t forget to check out Sharing Dots for Kids. To sign up for their e-mail newsletter, click here.

Free Estate Planning & Wills: Norm Zimmerman, Trust Director for the Kansas Nebraska Conference, is available by appointment to assist anyone who needs Estate Planning, Wills, etc. For more information contact Norm (402-617-2001).

On-Line Giving Available! Our church offers on-line giving through our website. If you would prefer to give electronically or if you are going to be away and want to stay up-to-date with your giving, click here. Adventist Giving now has an App you can download directly to your smart phone to make the process even easier. For an iPhone, click here. For Android phones, click here.

Our Church E-Mail Newsletter, Directly to Your Computer! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided in the lower right-hand portion of our church home page.

Adobe Reader: To read and download many of the documents we post here you need Adobe Reader installed on your computer. To get a free copy of the latest version, click here.

Adventist Screening Verification

Verified Volunteers has changed their name to Sterling Volunteers. The NAD has decided to select a parent name that can remain in their publications and website landing pages on a permanent basis. The name chosen for all our background screening and training needs is Adventist Screening Verification .

In cooperation with the Kansas Nebraska Conference, we are working with Adventist Screening Verification to provide background checks and on-line education for our church officers and everyone who works with our children. This helps ensure that we have some training to help us recognize and avoid situations that would put our children at risk. In addition to our elected Church Officers, everyone who works with Pathfinders and Adventurers, Children’s or Youth Sabbath School Classes, Children’s Church, and VBS must go through this training and submit to a background check (there is no cost to you or to our church). It will take about an hour of your time.

To go to the website where you begin this process, click here and then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Prayer Watch

There are several people and concerns that we are praying about, for more information about any of these or to request something to be added to our list, feel free to contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333)

    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • Elma Johannessen has improved enough to be removed from the ventilator (Tuesday evening) and may move out of ICU tomorrow (Thursday). She is at Nebraska Medicine – Bellevue. She enjoys visitors and will be able to have them as soon as she is moved out of ICU. Please continue to pray for her complete recovery.
    • Paul Lostaglia is currently in a rehab program as he recovers from his triple by-pass surgery. He is at Brookestone Meadows (600 Brookestone Meadows Plaza, Elkhorn, NE 68022). He enjoys visitors as well. Please continue to pray for him.
    • Donna Parker is back in the hospital at CHI Health – Bergan Mercy. Please continue to pray for her and Gary.
    • Raul Calderon, Larry Carter, Ron Egger, Gary Jeffers, Michael McKinnie, Dusty Mayhew, Floyd Morrison, Darin Stotler, Irvin Surber, Christian Willey, Gary Wilson, & Thaddeus Woolsey (inmates Pastor T. has is studying with)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Mary Jane Agan’s father, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), Heather Boulais (UC Student), Tammy Burville (Amy Newman-Holub’s cousin), Tanya Callahan (Elizabeth Knutson’s sister), Brenda Carroll (Judy Carroll’s sister-in-law), Dennis Cushman, Emma (Mary Jane Agan’s granddaughter), Tammy Gagne, John Hiers, Jane (Mary Jane Agan’s daughter-in-law), Janice (Elma’s friend), Dick & June Klein, Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Paul Lostaglia, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Donna & Gary Parker, Sheila and her brother Paul, Dane Swensen, Donald & JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s father and step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor’s Contact Information

To contact Pastor T, leave him a message by clicking here.  

This Week at Golden Hills: Dec. 14, 2019

Web Master - Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Thanksgetting        

Don Jacobsen's blog last weekend was titled Thanksgetting. He has some beautiful thoughts on giving and a great example of a church that made a difference in their community during the Christmas Holiday season.

Ruthie and I were sitting in a restaurant in South Carolina the day before Thanksgiving. Our food was a long time in coming so I got interested in the conversation going on in the family sitting at the table next to ours. There was Grandma, a teenager, and two or three others.

I tuned in to the conversation when I heard Grandma ask the teen what he wanted for Christmas. The lad didn’t have to think long before he began his list. “Uhh,” he mused. “I want a pony, some ice cream, a new video game, football cleats, a new skate board …” He paused, hoping he hadn’t stopped talking too soon. Then he concluded with this gem, “Well, Grandma, let me just text you my list.”

It made me wish we had started a Christmas tradition where the youngster sits on Santa’s lap and Santa says to the child, “And what are you planning to give away this Christmas?”

But as we drove away we found ourselves acknowledging that it’s not just teens and other kids who get their values twisted. Big kids do, too. I’m interested by how many commercials there are on evening TV where the husband buys a new car for his wife or the wife has a new Lexus parked in the driveway with a bow on top. I know, transportation is essential, but the untold story is whether they sat down together first and processed the question, “Honey, before we get something for ourselves, what can we do for someone else? Who needs help that we can provide? Who can we bless this year? What example can we set for the children?”

It’s a nice custom to have a big holiday dinner for the church. But here’s a new take on that. A Methodist church in Hilton Head, SC, has been leading the way for 21 years. One family in the church writes a check for the food, a local restaurant, Hudson’s, provides the facility and the kitchen staff, church members become the servers. Anyone is welcome and you pay as you are able. But since all of the expenses of the meal are covered, all the money goes to Africa to dig wells for villages where there is no water available. The day we were there they fed 1,600 people. It’s not possible to calculate how many were blessed … for years to come … with fresh water. And that doesn’t even include the givers. (Click here to continue reading this online.)

Click here to sign up to receive the HOPE Heals weekly messages. Click here to go to their website, Hope-Heals.org.

Joshua Rogers: I kissed my wife, my daughter saw me and said one word I won't ever forget …

I was moved as I read this article about how our love for our spouse affects our children’s lives. This is important, especially if you have children still living at home.

One day, my wife and I were listening to a playlist of Disney songs with our two little girls when the sentimental love song "I See the Light" from “Tangled” came on.

I walked over to my wife, who was in the kitchen, took her in my arms and started dancing with her slowly.

I could tell it caught her off-guard and embarrassed her a little – it came out of nowhere. Thank goodness she stayed in my arms and danced with me anyway.

As the song approached the final chorus, I looked in my peripheral vision and suddenly realized we weren't alone. Our daughters were standing there watching us in silence.

The song approached the end and as the strings played the last notes, I decided to give the girls a Hollywood ending. I took my wife's face in my hands and kissed her.

After I pulled away, I looked over and saw my oldest daughter's face lit up with adoration, and her eyes filled with tears. Then she came over, buried her face in my wife's legs, and cried. (Click here to read the entire article at FoxNews.com.)

Member Updates

Elma Johannessen: As I write this on Wednesday Evening, Elma has survived her second surgery but is in critical condition. Thank you for all your prayers. I will send out an update via the Remind App (see below for more info) when I receive new information.

Paul Lostaglia: Paul had triple bypass surgery on Monday. He is also dealing with some complications and is in a lot of pain. Please pray for him as well.

Pastor T & Pat on Vacation

Pastor T and Pat are taking a few days of vacation to enjoy time with their son and daughter-in-law. They will be available again on Wednesday, Dec. 18. Feel free to contact any one of our Elders if you need prayer or assistance. Click here for a current list with contact information.

Ride to Church Needed

An older gentleman, who lives near L Street and 132nd Street (not too far from the Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Target), is looking for a fairly regular ride to church on Sabbath mornings. If you live out that direction and would be willing to explore the possibilities, please contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333).

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 4:55 pm

This Sabbath at Church

    • Sabbath School (10:00 am)
      • Traditional Sabbath School Class, Church Sanctuary: Studying the current Sabbath School Lesson (click here to read it on-line).
      • Alternative Sabbath School Class, Hearth Room – Quest for Glory: So You Want To Be A Hero: We will look at the individual stories of the people mentioned in Hebrews 11 to see what made them a hero of faith and how we can apply those principles to our lives. Click here to see a basic outline of our study.
    • Worship Service (11:15 am) – This Sabbath Nicholas St. Onge, one of our Youth Group members, will be sharing our message. It is titled Characters of Christmas – the Shepherds.

Pathfinders & Adventurers meet this Monday (Dec. 16) at 6:30 pm. For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Pathfinder Calendar.
    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Adventurer Calendar.

No Prayer Meeting this Tuesday. We will begin again following the holidays on Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

Church Christmas Musical Worship Service one week from Sabbath (Dec. 21) at 11:15 am.

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

Why Being Faithful is Important: What does the Bible mean when it speaks of being faithful and steadfast? How should we best guard our hearts and be on the alert against temptation? What are the daily routines we should establish to follow Christ well and finish strong? Bible Gateway interviewed Cynthia Heald about her book, The Faithful Way: Remaining Steadfast in an Uncertain World. (Click here to read more.)

Moving from Troubled to Bold Faith: Read this brief reflection by Walter Wangerin, Jr, author of Acts of the Almighty: Meditations on the Story of God for Every Day of the Year, on the announcement by the angel Gabriel (his name means “God is my hero”) to Mary that she was going to be the mother of Jesus. (Click here to read more.)

Returning Our Minds to God: Mike Donehey, author of Finding God’s Life for My Will: His Presence is the Plan, says, "It is essential for each of us to find some method by which we can return our minds to communion with God, because perpetual communion is what our God is after.” (Click here to read more.)

Learn about and download the free award-winning Bible Gateway App by clicking here.

Check Out the entire Weekly Brief by clicking here. To subscribe to any one of their many email newsletters and Bible Studies, click here.

Remind App

We are using the Remind App as an emergency contact system for our church. Through it, we can easily and quickly send out a text message to everyone on the system. One way we would use it would be to notify you if church is cancelled due to bad weather. The App is designed to work in a school setting so you will see education terminology as you sign up. Our church is considered a class in this system.

To sign up, choose one of the methods below:

    1. If you have a smartphone, you can get push notifications. On your iPhone or Android phone open your web browser and go to: rmd.at/tmartinse. Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind. You will be prompted to download the mobile app.
    2. If you don’t have a smart phone, you will get text notifications. Text the message @tmartinse to the number 81010. If you’re having trouble with 81010, try texting @tmartinse to (941) 787-5566.

Outreach/Community Service Opportunities

Help for Survivors of Current Natural Disasters: ADRA (Adventist Development and Relief Agency) works with other disaster relief agencies to assist survivors of the many current natural disasters. To find out how you can help, click here.

Used Stamps Needed! Your used stamps can help Christian Record Services for the Blind raise money. Just tear them off the envelope, being careful to include the entire stamp and bring them to church. Put them into the container provided out on the table and we will take care of getting them where they need to go.

Miscellaneous Information

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch them by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church.

On-Line Church Directory Information: Now you can sync our church directory directly to your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire device with a Free App! You can search for other members – and then email, call, or text right from the directory app. It’s easy!

    1. Go to your device’s App Store. (Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    2. Search for Instant Church Directory.
    3. Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    4. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the login process.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia. To access a PDF copy of the most recent update, click here . To access a PDF copy that includes all we have received from 2019, click here; 2018, click here; 2017, click here; 2016, click here;  2013-2015, click here. To check out their website, click here. Don’t forget to check out Sharing Dots for Kids. To sign up for their e-mail newsletter, click here.

Free Estate Planning & Wills: Norm Zimmerman, Trust Director for the Kansas Nebraska Conference, is available by appointment to assist anyone who needs Estate Planning, Wills, etc. For more information contact Norm (402-617-2001).

On-Line Giving Available! Our church offers on-line giving through our website. If you would prefer to give electronically or if you are going to be away and want to stay up-to-date with your giving, click here. Adventist Giving now has an App you can download directly to your smart phone to make the process even easier. For an iPhone, click here. For Android phones, click here.

Our Church E-Mail Newsletter, Directly to Your Computer! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided in the lower right-hand portion of our church home page.

Adventist Screening Verification

Verified Volunteers has changed their name to Sterling Volunteers. The NAD has decided to select a parent name that can remain in their publications and website landing pages on a permanent basis. The name chosen for all our background screening and training needs is Adventist Screening Verification .

In cooperation with the Kansas Nebraska Conference, we are working with Adventist Screening Verification to provide background checks and on-line education for our church officers and everyone who works with our children. This helps ensure that we have some training to help us recognize and avoid situations that would put our children at risk. In addition to our elected Church Officers, everyone who works with Pathfinders and Adventurers, Children’s or Youth Sabbath School Classes, Children’s Church, and VBS must go through this training and submit to a background check (there is no cost to you or to our church). It will take about an hour of your time.

To go to the website where you begin this process, click here and then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Prayer Watch

There are several people and concerns that we are praying about, for more information about any of these or to request something to be added to our list, feel free to contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333)

    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • Paul Lostaglia had triple bypass surgery on Monday. He is also dealing with some complications and is in a lot of pain. Please pray for him as well.
    • Donna & Gary Parker are finally at home again. Please continue to remember them in your prayers.
    • Raul Calderon, Larry Carter, Ron Egger, Gary Jeffers, Michael McKinnie, Dusty Mayhew, Floyd Morrison, Darin Stotler, Irvin Surber, Christian Willey, Gary Wilson, & Thaddeus Woolsey (inmates Pastor T. has is studying with)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Mary Jane Agan’s father, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), Heather Boulais (UC Student), Tammy Burville (Amy Newman-Holub’s cousin), Tanya Callahan (Elizabeth Knutson’s sister), Brenda Carroll (Judy Carroll’s sister-in-law), Dennis Cushman, Emma (Mary Jane Agan’s granddaughter), Tammy Gagne, John Hiers, Jane (Mary Jane Agan’s daughter-in-law), Janice (Elma’s friend), Dick & June Klein, Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Paul Lostaglia, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Donna & Gary Parker, Sheila and her brother Paul, Dane Swensen, Donald & JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s father and step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor’s Contact Information

To contact Pastor T, leave him a message by clicking here.  

Adobe Reader

To read and download many of the documents we post here you need Adobe Reader installed on your computer. To get a free copy of the latest version, click here.

 

This Week at Golden Hills: Dec. 7, 2019

Web Master - Thursday, December 05, 2019

Powerful & Tender

This morning as I was having my devotional time, I was reminded again of something I need to review regularly. It is found in two passages in Isaiah, only a few verses apart. The first is Isaiah 40:28-32:

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the whole earth. He never becomes faint or weary; there is no limit to his understanding. He gives strength to the faint and strengthens the powerless. (Isaiah 40:28-29 , CSB)

Did you catch what this is saying? God is the Creator of the earth, the everlasting God. Elsewhere Scripture notes that He keeps the universe in order. We have no concept of this kind of power.

And, not only is He the most powerful being in the universe, there is no limit to His understanding. He understands everything – from how everything in the universe works down to the details of my life. The passage goes on:

Youths may become faint and weary, and young men stumble and fall, but those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not become weary, they will walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31-32, CSB)

He also supports and strengthens those who trust Him to enable them to have the energy and perseverance to do His work.

And then, just a few verses later we find this promise:

Don’t be afraid. I am with you. Don’t tremble with fear.  I am your God. I will make you strong, as I protect you with my arm and give you victories.

I am the Lord your God. I am holding your hand, so don’t be afraid. I am here to help you. (Isaiah 41:10 & 13, CEV)

Not only does He keep the complexity of the universe in order, and understands all the details of life, He is a tender protector; walking beside me holding my hand.

No wonder Paul could say:

Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7, CSB)

When we know God is holding our hand, we can tell Him everything. We can let Him support us as we walk through trouble. I love how the Message translates the last sentence of the passage – it describes what can happen when we trust in Jesus:

It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. (Philippians 4:7, the Message)

Bob’s Shower         

Don Jacobsen's blog last weekend was titled Bob's Shower. This is a beautiful example of how God took care of Bob’s needs.

Bob Stuart wanted to upgrade some of the public address equipment in the church he attended. The new equipment was state-of-the-art; the church building wasn’t. After wrestling with wires in the attic, conduit, circuit breakers, switches, and a bunch of other stuff, Bob conceded that although he was handy, he wasn’t licensed. So he decided to bring in a professional. Shouldn’t take more than a couple of hours, he thought.

Actually, two electricians showed up the next morning and by the time they finished they had invested a total of twelve hours in the project. As Bob paid the bill he remembers thinking, “Lord I’m going to need more help on this than I had figured.”

Meanwhile, the bathroom in Bob’s house experienced a major “plumbing event.” (Click here to continue reading this online.)

Click here to sign up to receive the HOPE Heals weekly messages. Click here to go to their website, Hope-Heals.org.

Remind App

We are using the Remind App as an emergency contact system for our church. Through it, we can easily and quickly send out a text message to everyone on the system. One way we would use it would be to notify you if church is cancelled due to bad weather. The App is designed to work in a school setting so you will see education terminology as you sign up. Our church is considered a class in this system.

To sign up, choose one of the methods below:

    1. If you have a smartphone, you can get push notifications. On your iPhone or Android phone open your web browser and go to: rmd.at/tmartinse. Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind. You will be prompted to download the mobile app.
    2. If you don’t have a smart phone, you will get text notifications. Text the message @tmartinse to the number 81010. If you’re having trouble with 81010, try texting @tmartinse to (941) 787-5566.

Ride to Church Needed

An older gentleman, who lives near L Street and 132nd Street (not too far from the Walmart, Sam’s Club, Home Depot, and Target), is looking for a fairly regular ride to church on Sabbath mornings. If you live out that direction and would be willing to explore the possibilities, please contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333).

Kansas Nebraska Conference Survey

The Conference is trying to collect some important information from us as members so they can make appropriate plans for the future – evangelism, strategies, staffing, etc. If you are a member of this Conference, please take a couple of minutes to answer this brief, 10-question survey. All answers are anonymous. Click here to begin.

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 4:55 pm

This Sabbath at Church

Christmas Cookie Exchange, this Sunday (Dec. 8) at 2:00 pm in the Fellowship Hall. See below for more information.

No Pathfinders or Adventurers this Monday (Dec. 9). For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Pathfinder Calendar.
    • Click here to download a copy of the 2019-2020 Adventurer Calendar.

Prayer Meeting this Tuesday (Dec. 10) at 6:00 pm. We are doing the I Give Up Bible Study Series – for more information, click here. This will be our last session of this study and during the holidays, we will take some time off. We will begin again on Tuesday, January 14, 2020.

Church Board meets this Tuesday (Dec. 10) at 7:15 pm in the Board Room of the Education Annex. If you have any items that need to be considered, please contact our Head Elder, Steve Wilhelmsen (e-mail or 402-708-2730).

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

How to Raise Boys Who Respect Girls: How can parents biblically and practically raise a generation of sons who are champions, encouragers, and respecters of women? What are the principles parents need to teach their sons so they will become men who break the pattern of thinking and acting that lead to the #metoo and #churchtoo atrocities? Bible Gateway interviewed Dave Willis about his book, Raising Boys Who Respect Girls: Upending Locker Room Mentality, Blind Spots, and Unintended Sexism. (Click here to read more.)

Questions as a New Tool for Daily Devotions: Even as a boy, Jesus used inquiry to prompt people's thinking: ‘After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions’ (Luke 2:46). We turn to the Bible for answers, but it actually is also full of questions: ‘For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have?’ (Matthew 5:46); ‘What must I do to be saved?’ (Acts 16:30); ‘Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?’ (Romans 8:35). Bible Gateway interviewed Brian J. Wright about his book, Inspired Questions: A Year's Journey Through the New Testament . (Click here to read more.)

Repent is a Word of Action: Eugene H. Peterson, author of A Month of Sundays: Thirty-One Days of Wrestling with Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, says, "You don’t repent by taking a deep breath and then feel better. You only repent when you turn around and go back or toward God. It doesn’t make any difference how you feel.” (Click here to read more.)

Learn about and download the free award-winning Bible Gateway App by clicking here.

Check Out the entire Weekly Brief by clicking here. To subscribe to any one of their many email newsletters and Bible Studies, click here.

Cookie Exchange, December 8

You’re invited to a Cookie Exchange on Sunday, December 8, 2019 at 2:00 pm here in our Fellowship Hall. The theme is Christmas Cookies. Your spouse/significant other is invited – along with your family.

The Rules of the Cookie Exchange are:

    1. All cookies should be homemade or from a bakery (not from the cookie aisle at the grocery store)
    2. Please bake and bring one to three dozen cookies of One Kind.
    3. You may take home as many cookies as you bring.

No time to bake? Burnt your cookies? Still want to attend? Go to a bakery and pick up 1 to 3 dozen of the same kind of cookies and come join us!

Church Positions

There are several positions we need to fill here at the church over the next few months. If you are interested in any of these, or have suggestions for someone to fill these, please contact Kalvin Tuel (e-mail or 402-201-6370) or Pastor T. (e-mail or 402-517-5333).

    • Junior Sabbath School Leader: The Junior Sabbath School Leader coordinates the teaching and activities of the Junior Sabbath School Class (Ages 10-12).
    • Communications Director: The Communications Director coordinates and publishes the Golden News (email Newsletter), and develops other means of getting information to our members.

Outreach/Community Service Opportunities

Help for Survivors of Current Natural Disasters: ADRA (Adventist Development and Relief Agency) works with other disaster relief agencies to assist survivors of the many current natural disasters. To find out how you can help, click here.

Used Stamps Needed! Your used stamps can help Christian Record Services for the Blind raise money. Just tear them off the envelope, being careful to include the entire stamp and bring them to church. Put them into the container provided out on the table and we will take care of getting them where they need to go.

Miscellaneous Information

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch them by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church.

On-Line Church Directory Information: Now you can sync our church directory directly to your Apple, Android, or Kindle Fire device with a Free App! You can search for other members – and then email, call, or text right from the directory app. It’s easy!

    1. Go to your device’s App Store. (Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    2. Search for Instant Church Directory.
    3. Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    4. Follow the directions on the screen to complete the login process.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia. To access a PDF copy of the most recent update, click here . To access a PDF copy that includes all we have received from 2019, click here; 2018, click here; 2017, click here; 2016, click here;  2013-2015, click here. To check out their website, click here. Don’t forget to check out Sharing Dots for Kids. To sign up for their e-mail newsletter, click here.

Free Estate Planning & Wills: Norm Zimmerman, Trust Director for the Kansas Nebraska Conference, is available by appointment to assist anyone who needs Estate Planning, Wills, etc. For more information contact Norm (402-617-2001).

On-Line Giving Available! Our church offers on-line giving through our website. If you would prefer to give electronically or if you are going to be away and want to stay up-to-date with your giving, click here. Adventist Giving now has an App you can download directly to your smart phone to make the process even easier. For an iPhone, click here. For Android phones, click here.

Our Church E-Mail Newsletter, Directly to Your Computer! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided in the lower right-hand portion of our church home page.

Adventist Screening Verification

Verified Volunteers has changed their name to Sterling Volunteers. The NAD has decided to select a parent name that can remain in their publications and website landing pages on a permanent basis. The name chosen for all our background screening and training needs is Adventist Screening Verification .

In cooperation with the Kansas Nebraska Conference, we are working with Adventist Screening Verification to provide background checks and on-line education for our church officers and everyone who works with our children. This helps ensure that we have some training to help us recognize and avoid situations that would put our children at risk. In addition to our elected Church Officers, everyone who works with Pathfinders and Adventurers, Children’s or Youth Sabbath School Classes, Children’s Church, and VBS must go through this training and submit to a background check (there is no cost to you or to our church). It will take about an hour of your time.

To go to the website where you begin this process, click here and then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Last Week’s Sermon

To download or print a PDF copy of last weeks sermon titled Don’t Be Foolish!, click here. You can watch it by clicking here. You can download or print the entire sermon series arranged into one document by clicking here.

Prayer Watch

There are several people and concerns that we are praying about, for more information about any of these or to request something to be added to our list, feel free to contact Pastor T. (402-517-5333)

    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • Elma Johannessen will be having surgery on December 10 at Nebraska Medicine, Bellevue . It will be a rather delicate surgery and she is requesting our prayers.
    • Raul Calderon, Larry Carter, Ron Egger, Gary Jeffers, Michael McKinnie, Dusty Mayhew, Floyd Morrison, Darin Stotler, Irvin Surber, Christian Willey, Gary Wilson, & Thaddeus Woolsey (inmates Pastor T. has is studying with)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Mary Jane Agan’s father, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), Heather Boulais (UC Student), Tammy Burville (Amy Newman-Holub’s cousin), Tanya Callahan (Elizabeth Knutson’s sister), Brenda Carroll (Judy Carroll’s sister-in-law), Dennis Cushman, Emma (Mary Jane Agan’s granddaughter), Tammy Gagne, John Hiers, Jane (Mary Jane Agan’s daughter-in-law), Janice (Elma’s friend), Dick & June Klein, Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Paul Lostaglia, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Donna & Gary Parker, Sheila and her brother Paul, Dane Swensen, Donald & JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s father and step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor’s Contact Information

To contact Pastor T, leave him a message by clicking here.  

Adobe Reader

To read and download many of the documents we post here you need Adobe Reader installed on your computer. To get a free copy of the latest version, click here.