Pastor Thure Martinsen

This Week at Golden Hills: Nov. 28, 2020

Web Master - Thursday, November 26, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving – I’m Thankful!

We had kind of crazy week.

Saturday night, right after sundown we heard a loud bang and our house suddenly went dark and silent.

I went outside, sure the power was off on our street, but all the houses had lights on and the street lights were blazing.

So, I went downstairs and checked our electric panel and was greeted by a bad smell and a blown main breaker.

As it turns out, after our dishwasher was repaired a couple of weeks ago, it leaked. It is directly above the electric panel (a great design feature) and the dripping water corroded the metal in the breaker and it blew up.

We’re fortunate there was not a fire.

They had to replace the entire breaker box because of the damage and it was completed on Monday afternoon. We have the dishwasher people coming back out to fix it, and we’ll have to do some misc. repair work here and there.

It was a bit of an adventure – cooking on a camp stove in the garage, extra blankets on the beds, heavy sweaters and jackets in the house. Wonderful friends and neighbors who reached out to help in numerous ways.

It made me realize how much I take for granted – things like simply turning up the heat, flipping a switch to turn on a light, pushing a button rather than wrestling the garage door.

It also made me realize the number of people who care deeply – good friends and even new neighbors who don’t know us all that well yet.

And, in addition to all of this, our daughter has been here enjoying the adventure with us!

We have a lot to be thankful for.

It also made me think of those people who deal with these conditions on a daily basis without a home, no bed with warm blankets to sleep in, no one-burner camp stove to make a warm meal, and often even lacking enough food.

What can we do to help these people? How can we as Christians continue to enjoy all we have when there are so many who are going without even the basic necessities of shelter and food?

It reminds me of the question the Apostle John asks:

If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion – how can God’s love be in that person? (1 John 3:17 , NLT)

I’m praying about this, asking God to direct me as I move forward. I invite you to do the same.

This is an important part of loving like Jesus.

Is There a Pattern Here?

This week Don Jacobsen's blog is titled Is There a Pattern Here?. It’s about the power of praying for our children.

A couple of years ago Ruthie and I were travelling through Virginia, and as we entered the city of Fredericksburg we discovered it was the burial place of George Washington’s mother. Both of us are amateur history buffs so we searched till we found it. The site is not in a cemetery but in a single location dedicated to her life.

But nearby we found something of even greater interest. It’s a couple of large rocks called Meditation Rock. Here Mary, mother of George, spent what she described as “countless hours meditating and praying” for her son and for the struggling government over which he would soon preside. It was not hard to imagine the correlation between her incessant intercession and his success in leading the new nation.

In the first 20 years of their marriage, Samuel and Susanna Wesley had 19 children though not all would survive infancy. (Incidentally, Susanna was the first of 25 children in her own family growing up.) Without the benefit of packaged foods or even a washing machine, Susanna developed a plan to secure her daily prayer time for each of her children. She would sit in the kitchen and pull her apron over her head and pray. Anytime the children saw her in this pose they knew they were to interrupt only in case of fire or impending death(Click here to read the rest of the story.)

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

COVID Response Update

We continue to meet online only. We are currently not hosting any in-person events at our facility. For a more complete statement see below or click here.

Operation Christmas Child

To each of you who participated, Thank you! We completed 20 shoe boxes to share and donated an additional $300 towards this project!

Wall of Love

During the month of November our Wall of Love Project will be collecting for the Christmas Bells drive for Open Door Mission, an organization that provides emergency housing, meals, food, training and more for homeless and low income men, women, and families.

The Christmas Bells drive hopes to combine the efforts of many organizations to collect high need items for the people they serve. You are encouraged to donate to the Wall of Love by marking it on your tithe envelope or going to our online giving portal (by clicking here) and entering it the amount under Wall of Love.

Communications/Social Media Director

We are looking for a Communications/Social Media Director for our Church. This person will be responsible for communicating our mission and activities to our members and our community. They will use a combination of methods to reach as many people as possible. This would include keeping our website and calendar useful and up to date. It would also include using text messaging, Facebook (and other online social media), and emails along with the more traditional methods of mail, newsprint, radio, and TV ads as appropriate. If this sounds interesting to you and you would like to explore it further, contact either Kalvin Tuel ( or 402-201-6370) or Pastor T ( or 402-517-5333).

What’s Happening

Sunset this Friday – 4:57 pm

Sabbath School and Church is not meeting in person at church right now due to the increase in COVID cases in our community. See below or click here for more information about this.

Sabbath School Resources:

    • Our Alternate Sabbath School Class meets online through video conferencing. If you would like to be a part of this group, please text Alfredo Diaz (920-216-3625) to get the information you need to join them.
    • To study the current Sabbath School Lesson on-line, click here.
    • Hope Sabbath School, click here.

This Sabbath Online:

    • Our Worship Service begins online at 11:10 am with Mission Spotlight followed by the Children’s Corner. This Sabbath, we will begin the Christmas Season with a message from Kalvin Tuel, our Head Elder, focusing on Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist. To download the assignment for Sabbath, click here. You can view our service on our Website, our Facebook Page, or our YouTube Channel.
    • To watch last Sabbath’s Communion Service on YouTube, click here. To download the page with Bible verses, questions, and this week’s assignment, click here.
    • You can watch any of our previously recorded worship services by clicking here.

Pathfinders and Adventurers are not currently meeting. For information about Pathfinders contact Holly Degerness (402-917-4718) or Marina Nolasco (402-215-6048); for information about Adventurers, contact Lori Knutson (

Prayer Meeting meets this Tuesday (Dec. 1) at 6:00 pm. We are going through the book of 1 John. We are still meeting on-line. For instructions on how to participate, click here. Contact Pastor T for more information (402-517-5333).

MLT meets this Tuesday (Dec. 1) at 7:15 pm. For instructions on how to participate, click here. If you have any items that need to be considered, please text or email Kalvin Tuel (e-mail or 402-201-0630).

COVID Response Update

If you have been following the news, you know we are seeing the highest rate of COVID infections and hospitalizations we have ever had here in the Omaha area since the beginning of the Pandemic.

Because of this, our Church Board this week voted to discontinue all in-person activities and only hold online services going forward. We will re-evaluate this at our board meeting each month and will return to our building as soon as it seems safe to do so.

This means there will be no in-person Worship Services, Sabbath School Classes, Pathfinders, Adventurers, Prayer Meetings, Board Meetings, or MLT Meetings at our Church Facility.

We will continue to livestream our Worship Service each Sabbath beginning at 11:10 am with Mission Spotlight and our Children’s Corner. You can view it on our Website, our Facebook Page, or our YouTube Channel.

Prayer Meetings, Board Meetings, and MLT Meetings will continue via our Church Zoom Channel. Click here for instructions on how to join one of these meetings.

As we move forward from here, we will use the Pastor’s Blog, Golden News, our Website, and Remind to keep you informed.

I know this is disappointing. It felt like we were just getting some momentum building back up – and however we may frame it, it feels like a step backward.

However, Jesus’ mandate to love each other (see John 13:34-35) means we will not expose others to unnecessary risks. We will not provide more opportunities for COVID to expand in our community.

It also means we will look out for one another. Please call and check in on people God brings to your mind. They may not need any specific help, but a thoughtful conversation can change the outlook of an otherwise bleak and lonely day.

Above all, keep your connection with God secure. Don’t neglect to spend time with Him in the Bible and talking with Him in Prayer. This is where your strength to survive, and even thrive will come from.

(To download and print a copy of this information – plus some additional COVID resources, click here.)

Life Line Screening

Life Line Screening, a leading provider of community-based preventive health screenings will be in our community on Monday, January 20, 2020 at Golden Hills Seventh-Day Adventist 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 or calling 1-866-229-0469 to receive your discount and preferred appointment time.   

Worship Service DVDs

There is a video recording made of each week’s worship service. It is available on DVD. If you would like to receive these please contact Lori Knutson (402-980-5018).

Miscellaneous Information

Remind is our emergency alert service. To get notices through Remind, you must be signed up. You can do this by simply texting the message @tmartinse to the number 81010 (or 941-787-5566) – click here for more detailed instructions.

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.

Video Streaming: We are now live streaming our sermons each Sabbath – you can watch it on our Website, our Facebook Page, or our YouTube Channel.

On-Line Church Directory Information: If your contact information has changed in the last few months (phone number, email, address, etc.) please either log on to the Church Directory App and correct it or send a note with your updated information to Judy Carroll (402-290-3306).

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.

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.

Golden News – our church e-mail newsletter, directly to tour inbox! If you would like to receive our weekly, e-mail newsletter, the Golden News, directly to your computer, click here and enter your information in the space provided.

Lippincott Family Updates: Check out the latest update from Lorilee and Bryon Lippincott about their family’s experiences serving God in Asia by clicking here. To check out their website, click 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.

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 begin this process, click here, then select First-Time Registrant and follow the instructions. If you have completed this in the past three years, you should get an email reminder when it is time for you to renew your certification. For more information, contact Pastor T (402-517-5333).

Last Week’s Sermon

To watch last Sabbath’s Communion Service on YouTube, click here. To download the page with Bible verses, questions, and this week’s assignment, click 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 COVID-19 Virus Pandemic that is rising here and around the world
    • That God will bring healing to our country and will control the direction of our country and world. May He come soon!!
    • The Holy Spirit – to fill and guide our church
    • The Future of Our Church – Please pray that God will make His will and the path to achieving it known and that we will have the courage to follow wherever it leads
    • Our Church Leaders (Pastor, Elders, Deacons, Board Members, Sabbath School Class Leaders, Pathfinder/Adventurer Leaders, Etc.)
    • The Lippincott Family
    • Kevin Klesh (Safety in his work as a Police Officer)
    • Those dealing with Health Issues: Bill Agan, Al Bakerlis (Diane Harrington’s brother-in-law), 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), Brett Knutson, Reagan Knutson, Ginger Kroeker, Dagny Martinsen, Steve Newton (and family), Melody Parker, Gary Parker, JoAnn Swensen (Les Swensen’s step mom), Charise Talley, Cindy & Bob Tice (Elizabeth Knutson’s parents)

Pastor T’s Contact Information or call/text 402-517-5333.

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