Pastor Thure Martinsen

This Week at Golden Hills: Nov. 2, 2019

Web Master - Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Scamming 101        

This weekend several people reached out to me to let me know that they had gotten a text message from someone claiming to be me asking for money or a gift card. The number used to text them was not my phone number, although with current apps, anyone could send a text and say it was from my actual phone number.

I will never text you (or email you) to ask for money, period. If you know me and read this you can be 100% sure that any text asking you to send money in any form is not from me but from someone pretending to be me – if you have any doubt or question, contact me.

Scamming is such despicable (that’s a million dollar word for horrible, no good, down-low and many other such words) – it’s such a despicable thing to do. Using someone else’s name and connections to deceive people and enrich yourself is beyond repulsive.

Unfortunately, it’s easy to fall for – especially if you do not personally know me (or whoever is being misrepresented). Scammers can be so clever and convincing.

The biggest scammer of all is Satan. He deceived our first parents into thinking God was holding back something they wanted to know, something that would enrich their lives and make them more like God.

They fell for the lie. So, here we are struggling with sin. Down through the ages Satan has cast doubt on God’s love and character. Not only that, he has introduced errors into our religious thinking that has kept us feeling spiritual, while making sure we do not really connect with God.

He has gotten us to believe that somehow our salvation depends on our actions. He’s convinced us that in order to be saved, we have to be good enough and keep the law.

It’s amazing how many committed Christians come to the end of their life here on earth and are worried they have not been good enough to deserve salvation. This is not God’s way, it is Satan’s scam meant to keep us feeling insecure and doubtful.

The Bible makes it clear that we are not saved through our efforts or our work. It is a gift from God from the first tug we feel in our hearts towards Him to the time Jesus returns to take us home. (See John 6:28-29; Romans 3:9-31; Romans 5:1-11; Romans 6:23; Romans 7:21 – 8:4; Ephesians 2:4-10; 1 John 5:11-13;  Steps to Christs, pages 62-63.)

You can live knowing that you have eternal life. It’s not because of anything you have done; Romans 1-3 makes it clear you (and everyone else) are a hopeless sinner. It would be easier to jump to the moon on your own power than to earn salvations by your actions.

The reason you can know that you have eternal life, is because your salvation is based on what Jesus has already successfully completed. As a human, He lived a perfect life and then died the death of separation from God to earn the right to offer you forgiveness, cleansing, and salvation as a gift.

The only thing you can do is to believe He’s serious about this and accept the gift. When you accept this gift you enter into a relationship with Him. And, as long as you stay with Him, your eternal life is certain.

Don’t take my word for this, prayerfully read the passages I noted above. Read through my sermon series on Romans and contemplate the Scripture passages we examined. (click here for a PDF copy of the series).

Watch out for all the scams out there. But especially guard against the one Satan uses to cheat you out of peace, confidence, and eternal life. Keep looking to Jesus!

Thank You – From Pastor T & Pat

Thank you to each one of you who have especially expressed your appreciation to Pat and I for our ministry here. This Sabbath marks the eight year anniversary of our arrival here in November, 2011. We have been blessed by your love and support. We look forward to the coming year and are excited to see where Jesus will take us as a church!

Annual Sacrifice Offering – November 9

Don’t forget to give generously next Sabbath, November 9, to the Annual Sacrifice for Global Missions Offering. This special annual collection is an opportunity for us to sacrifice for mission to help fund the work of Global Mission pioneers. Click here for more information. To donate online, click here.

Video Streaming

Last Sabbath we did the first live stream of our sermon, you can watch it by clicking here. This will now be a regular feature of our church. To be notified of coming events that will be live streamed, click here and select subscribe.

Calendar Events

Sunset this Friday – 6:19 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 continue our sermon series The Sermon, based on Matthew 5 – 7. Pastor T’s sermon will be a continuation of last week’s sermon and is titled “When You Pray …”, Part 3. The book, Thoughts from the Mount of Blessings provides important insight into this passage as does Desire of Ages, Chapter 31. Live Stream the sermon by clicking here.
      • To download or print a PDF copy of last week’s sermon titled When You Pray …, Part 2, 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!

Daylight Savings Time Ends, this Sunday Morning (Nov. 3) – remember to turn your clocks back one hour.

Women’s Ministry is hosting a cooking class this Sunday (Nov. 3) at 1:00 pm in the Fellowship Hall of the Church. Please RSVP by texting Andria (402-949-0006) or Mary Jane (402-250-4770).

Pathfinders & Adventurers meet this Monday (Nov. 4) 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 (Nov. 5) at 6:00 pm. We will be doing the I Give Up Bible Study, Part 1. If you wish to participate and didn’t get your book and study guide, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333). For more information see below.

Pathfinder Campout, November 8-10. For more information contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-594-0671).

Children’s Church, one week from Sabbath (Nov. 9), 11:15 am in the Fellowship Hall.

Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes are due no later than Sabbath, November 23 (3 weeks from this Sabbath). See below for more information.

Christmas Cookie Exchange, December 8 at 2:00 pm in the Fellowship Hall. Watch for more information.

From Bible Gateway’s Weekly Brief

The Bible Is Alive and Wants to Interact with You: Do you have good intentions of reading the Bible but find it confusing, boring, and irrelevant? What do you do if your experience with the Bible gets in the way of building a personal relationship with God? What small steps could you take to sustain a vibrant spiritual life where the Word of God is alive and active for you? Bible Gateway interviewed Nicole Unice, author of Help! My Bible Is Alive!: 30 Days of Learning to Love and Understand God’s Word. (Click here to read more.)

Christian Discipleship – Responding to the Word: In his book The Bible: God’s Word for Today Series, the late preacher, evangelist, and theologian John Stott says submission to the authority of Scripture is the way of mature discipleship and intellectual integrity. (Click here to read more.)

Does Suffering Disprove the Existence of a Good God? Mary Jo Sharp, author of  Why I Still Believe: A Former Atheist’s Reckoning with the Bad Reputation Christians Give a Good God, says, "Life acts are 'evil,' 'wrong,' 'injustice,' 'suffering,' or 'hurt,' depending on what kind of deviation from a standard of goodness they entail. But where do we get the standard to use for comparison?"  (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.

Online Bible Study with Laura Story

Join the I Give Up Online Bible Study with Laura Story: We will be going through this study at Prayer Meeting on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm in the Hearth Room. If you have not yet gotten your book and study guide, contact Pastor T.

If you are unable to attend Prayer Meeting, but would like to go through the study, you may do so by joining the I Give Up Online Bible Study with Grammy-winning singer/songwriter and Bible teacher Laura Story to discover the peace and joy that can be found in living a surrendered life. You'll get FREE access to Laura's five study videos, FREE downloads of the first chapters of the book, I Give Up: The Secret Joy of a Surrendered Life and study guide, printable Scriptures and affirmations, and other goodies! (Click here to read more.)

Operation Christmas Child

It is that time of year again! We have the opportunity to make a big difference in a child’s life by participating in Operation Christmas Child. These boxes may be turned in here at church anytime during the next several weeks, no later than November 23, 2019.

You will find plenty of boxes and supplies on the table in our Lobby. For information and ideas on packing a box, click here – for a list of things to include and what cannot be included, click here.

For more information about the program, click here or speak with Carol Fennessy or Pat Martinsen.

Christmas Shoe Boxes cost $9.00 each to ship.

    • Please remember to include a check in the box for this amount made out to Samaritan’s Purse (note OCC on the memo line) or include $9.00 in cash.
    • Click here to pay this amount on-line and print out a label for your box if you would like to know where your box goes.
    • If you would like to donate funds to help ship the boxes our children’s departments are preparing, please turn it using one of our tithe envelopes marked Operation Christmas Child.

You may donate funds directly of Samaritan’s Purse for their many outreach and humanitarian projects by clicking here.

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).

    • Head Elder: The Head Elder works as the Pastor’s Associate here at church in providing for Spiritual leadership and direction. He/She also functions as the Chairman of the Church Board.
    • Treasurer: The Treasurer manages the finances of our church. He/She maintains the financial records, pays our bills, and is instrumental in planning and maintaining our budget.
    • Sabbath School Secretary: The Sabbath School Secretary orders and maintains the supply of Sabbath School lessons for all our Sabbath School Classes. They also collect the Sabbath School Offering each Sabbath morning from the classes.
    • 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

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!

    • Go to your device’s App Store.(Click here for Apple products, click here for Android devices, or click here for Kindle Fire.
    • Search for Instant Church Directory.
    • Enter your email as it’s listed in our church directory.
    • 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 week’s sermon titled When You Pray …, Part 2, 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.)
    • Bev McNeal and her children as they mourn the loss of Ron.
    • Donna & Gary Parker continue to have serious health problems. Donna is back at Hillcrest Heath and Rehab in Bellevue wit 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. 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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