Pastor Thure Martinsen

This Week at Golden Hills: Jan. 18, 2020

Web Master - Thursday, January 16, 2020

Another Scam         

I wrote a couple of months ago on a scam that used my information.

The current scam going around is much more insidious.

It comes via an 800 number. Pat, Meme, and I have received dozens of calls in just the past few days. We can’t block it because it uses a different 800 number for every call.

Using a recorded message they tell you there is a problem with your Social Security benefits so they are being cut off. They close the message by saying if you believe this to be in error, select option 1 and you can speak to a “Social Security Agent” who will help you clear this up.

This takes you to a “Social Security Agent” – who is really a scam artist trying to rip you off. They ask for your name and your Social Security Number to verify your account and then tell you how much you need to pay to get this taken care. They will then take your credit card information and tell you you’re good to go.

Which of course is a lie because now they have your name, your phone number, your Social Security Number, and your credit card information – and you know the damage they can do with all that.

The best way to deal with this is to not answer the phone if you don’t recognize the number. If you do answer the phone, don’t select option 1. Rather hang up and call the real Social Security number (1-800-772-1213) or log onto your account on line.

I share this for two reasons. First of all, I don’t want any of you to fall for this scam.

Second, this scam illustrates how Satan, the original scammer, works.

He will feed you a lie that feels like truth, creating a false sense of emergency. He will then suggest a solution that will only hurt and destroy you. In fact, his only goal is to hurt and discredit God by destroying you. The Apostle Peter wrote:

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8, NLT)

In the two verse right before this one, he gives us the solution to Satan’s deceptions:

So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. (1 Peter 5:6-7, NLT)

The only way to not get deceived by Satan, is focus on God. When you perceive trouble, don’t try to deal with it yourself, instead:

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. (1 Peter 5:7, NLT)

Jesus died to expose Satan’s scam and to rescue you from his grasp.

Stay safe out there – keep your focus on Jesus!

From Outlook Magazine On-line

You are the Church! Is the local church still relevant in today's world? Can your congregation still believe it's able to make a difference? Ron Carlson, president of the Kansas-Nebraska Conference, shares four valuable actions congregations can take that will make a monumental difference. (Click here to read more.)

Church Structure A-Z: When you’re looking at an organization as large as the Seventh-day Adventist Church, it might be difficult to understand. Here is a general breakdown to help you out. (Click here to read more.)

Outlook Magazine is the office communication tool of the Mid-America Union Conference, of which we are a part. To go to their homepage, click here. To sign up for their weekly email newsletter go to their homepage and scroll to the bottom where you can enter your email address.

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!

Calendar of Events

Sunset this Friday – 5:22 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 are discussing and studying the principles found in 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, we continue our sermon series titled Take the Plunge with Pastor T.’s sermon titled Dig In! How important is getting to know Jesus? And, what is the role of God’s promises in your life?
    • Chili Cook-Off will take place this Saturday night (Jan. 18) in our Fellowship Hall beginning at 5:30 pm.

Pathfinders & Adventurers meet this Monday (Jan. 20) 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.

Prayer Meeting meets this Tuesday (Jan. 21) at 6:00 pm.

Pathfinder’s Honors Festival (Jan. 24-26) is coming up in a week and a half. Be sure Holly or Marina know if you’re planning to participate or not. For more information contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671)

Wall of Love – Deadline for Project Harmony Leggings: All leggings for Project Harmony should be brought to church no later than Sabbath, Jan. 25. See below for more information.

Women’s Bible Study, one week from Sunday (Jan. 26) at the home of Lori Knutson (3316 N 47th Ave., Omaha, NE 68104) from 9:30 – 11:00 a.m.  If you are interested in attending, please see Lori Knutson after church, email llknutson@yahoo.com or call / text (402) 980-5018.

MLT Meeting one week from Tuesday (Jan. 28) at 7:15 pm in the Hearth Room. If you wish to submit something for them to discuss, please contact Kalvin Tuel (402-201-6370).

Church Planning Meeting, two weeks from Sabbath (Feb. 1) following Potluck. See above for more details.

Breakfast at Church will begin again on February 8.

Mid-America Union Children’s Ministries Convention 2020: Are you excited about ministering to children? Do you wish to have training to effectively minister to children? Looking for resources to help you program and meet the needs of children?  You want to attend the 2020 Children’s Ministries Convention, February 28-29, 2020 at the Omaha Marriott Regency. To Register (or for more information), click here or call (800) 732-7587.  See below for more details.

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

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

How to Be a Gardener and Ambassador for Christ: How do you have a conversation with someone who is intent on proving Christianity wrong and won't accept the Bible as a source of authority? How can you artfully regain control of discussions, keeping them moving forward in constructive ways, comfortably and graciously maneuvering through the minefields of a challenging dialogue to get people thinking about Jesus? Bible Gateway interviewed Gregory Koukl about his book, Tactics (2nd Edition): A Game Plan for Discussing Your Christian Convictions. (Click here to read more.)

How to Be the Kind of Christian People Can’t Resist: Jesus envisioned his followers would be hard to resist: a wildly diverse yet compellingly unified multitude of strangers that would penetrate the world with love. Over time this Jesus movement would become irresistible to people from every nation, tribe, and tongue. How does Christianity stack up to Jesus' expectations? Bible Gateway interviewed Scott Sauls about his book, Irresistible Faith: Becoming the Kind of Christian the World Can't Resist. (Click here to read more.)

Preparing Yourself for Life’s Next Storm: Esther Fleece Allen, author of Your New Name: Saying Goodbye to the Labels That Limit, says, "Too often, our identity gets tangled up with our circumstances, and suddenly, the truth of who we are is colored by our relationship status, our job title, the shame of our past, or what others say about us. (Click here to read more.)

Idolatry – The One Great Sin that All Others Come From: Kyle Idleman, author of God’s at War: Defeating the Idols that Battle for Your Heart, says, "We may not have the god of commerce, the god of agriculture, the god of sex, or the god of the hunt. But we do have portfolios, automobiles, adult entertainment, and sports. If it walks like an idol, and quacks like an idol … You can call it a cough instead of calling it cancer, but that doesn’t make it any less deadly. (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.

MAUC Children’s Ministries Convention 2020

Are you excited about ministering to children? Do you wish to have training to effectively minister to children? Looking for resources to help you program and meet the needs of children?  You need to attend the 2020 Children’s Ministries Convention, February 28-29, 2020 at the Omaha Marriott Regency Hotel.

You’ll receive:

    • In-depth, hands on training through breakout options (For a list of Breakout Sessions click here).
    • Training for the new Seventh-day Adventist HEROES VBS Curriculum.
    • Resource Center full of children’s ministry specific resources.
    • Meaningful networking with other leaders like you.

Registration: $25.00 per person – Includes Registration materials, Sabbath Lunch, In-depth hands on training through Breakout Sessions, Resources, Networking.

Venue: Omaha Marriott Regency, 10220 Regency Circle, Omaha, NE 68114.

Housing: There is a convention room block at the Omaha Marriott Regency. Rate is $91.00 per night plus tax (18.16%). Click here to make a reservation or call 1-402-399-9000 and ask for MAU Room Block Price.

To Register (or for more information), click here or call (800) 732-7587.

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!

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 your phone is not so smart, you can still 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

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’re focusing on Project Harmony during the month of January. They’re 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.

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).

Last Week’s Sermon

To download or print a PDF copy of last week’s sermon titled L, O, LOL?, 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 has been discharged from the hospital is now at home.
    • Paul Lostaglia has been discharged from Rehab and is now at home.
    • Bill Agan continues radiation therapy for the cancer in his throat.
    • 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.  

 

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