NEW TEACHER AT ST. JOHN’S LUTHERAN SCHOOL

On Saturday 5/12 at Martin Luther College in New Ulm, MN, Miss Rachel Naumann was assigned to serve the Lord at St. John’s Lutheran School (WELS)–Montello, WI as Kindergarten & 1st grade teacher. 

A 2016 MLC graduate, Miss Naumann has served the past two years as instructor & dormitory supervisor at Luther Preparatory School–Watertown, WI.  Miss Naumann will move to Montello and begin her service in July.    

 

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Not of This World – May 14, 2018

“They are not of the world, even as I am not of it.”
John 17:16

Not of This World


Daily Devotion – May 14, 2018

Devotion based on John 17:16

See series: Devotions

Sarah felt out of place. While she always enjoyed the company of her friends, she noticed something had changed. Initially she just ignored her feelings, but as time went on she felt more and more uncomfortable.

One day she went to her father and wanted to know what he thought. She explained, every time I get together with my friends all they talk about is parties, drinking, their latest escapades with guys, and criticizing other people. Sarah confessed she liked her friends, but she didn’t appreciate their decisions. Her father thought for a moment. Then he asked his daughter, “Do you remember Jesus’ prayer for his disciples?”

What Sarah needed to remember is what I need to understand. As a faithful follower of my Savior, I am unique. Jesus has not only forgiven my sin and purified me from guilt and shame, he has also set me apart for his holy purposes. My life belongs to my Savior. I am not of this world.

The direct result is, that while I live in this world, I do not consider myself a part of it. I have been set free from the selfishness, the self-centeredness, and self-indulgence which defines the world. I have also been set free to serve my Savior and others unselfishly, selflessly, and sacrificially.

Although this is what my Savior has made me, I realize that it will always be a struggle. My sinful, worldly flesh will always seek to gain control. The devil will also tirelessly work to lead me away from my Savior and his will for my life. My strength, my confidence, and my only hope for victory is through Jesus. As my Savior, he provides me with the motivation and the ability to live completely for him. He also assures me, when I do fall, he will be there to forgive me and restore me through his precious love.

How blessed I am to be united to my Savior. How blessed I am to be his faithful disciple. How blessed I am to be “not of this world.”

Prayer:
O dearest Jesus, you have set me apart from this world. Keep me safe. Keep me strong. Keep me yours forever. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Jesus is the Trail – May 13, 2018

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
John 14:6

Jesus is the Trail


Daily Devotion – May

Devotion based on John 14:6

See series: Devotions

The scenery whizzed by along Interstate 94. Fields and rivers, forest and prairie. Who first blazed these trails? Before bulldozers, there were horses and wagons. Before them, French fur traders and explorers. Before them, Ojibwe and Sioux.

I could not have traveled that road back then. Such a trip would’ve left me lost, suffering from exposure, and starvation. It would’ve ended in tragedy. I needed those who have gone before.

Jesus blazed the trail that no one else could. Who could’ve opened the path to the Father’s house? God’s holiness is a consuming fire; I am a guilty sinner. What is the guilt that nags your conscience? Even the smallest sin excludes you and me. Even one failure to keep God’s commands is like a roaring river or an impassable mountain cutting off our way to the Father. If you and I do our best to get around our sin and find our own path, it will end in tragedy.

Jesus came from the Father. He came sent by the Father. He came on the mission to bring you and me to the Father. He didn’t blaze a trail for us to follow by our own power. How lost that would have left us!

Rather, Jesus is the trail. He is the way. He alone brings us to the Father. For he alone has come from the Father and returned to the Father to prepare a place for us.

He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. For only his death brings us life with the Father. Only his death atoned for all guilt—yours, mine, and everyone’s. Only his death reconciled the world to God. Only his death has removed sin, which ought to have blocked us from our Father’s house forever. His death truly did all this, for he has risen. He lives. That is the truth. Believe it.

Yes, believe that Jesus is the one and only way to the Father. Believe that he is your way.

Prayer:
Without you, dear Jesus, I am lost and damned. You alone bring me to the Father. Keep me from pursuing my own self-sought ways. Draw me closer to you until I dwell in your Father’s house forever. Amen.

This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Death – March 12, 2018

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live even though he dies.”
John 11:25

Death


Daily Devotion – March 12, 2018

Devotion based on John 11:25

See series: Devotions

Alfred Nobel woke up to a grim and unexpected notice one morning. In the local paper he read his own obituary! You see, the local reporter had mistaken the death of Alfred’s brother for his own. But the appearance of Alfred’s obituary did not alarm him as much as what he read in that obituary. It read, “The Dynamite King has died!” Alfred was described as the man who had made a great fortune from his invention of dynamite. Sadly, he would be remembered by the world as someone who profited from bringing disaster; a merchant of death and destruction.

Many of us may wonder how we will be remembered after we die. Maybe more than once the question asked so jokingly in the commercial, “What do you want on your tombstone?” has occupied our minds.

Someone once said, “Death is the ultimate statistic.” It’s a hardened reality that is completely inescapable. Death can fill us with a feeling of defenselessness. Most of us do not get the opportunity to reflect on our own death like Alfred did. So, when these thoughts creep into our minds, we find ourselves with a lot more questions than answers. When? … Where? … WHY?

Our God desires a different statistic for all people. Our Savior Jesus Christ says, “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full” (1 Timothy 2:4). This life that Jesus offers each of us extends beyond the grave. It is life in its fullest; it is life with God forever!

Jesus does not want us to have a heart full of worry and questions about death. Instead he wants us to be confident of his power over death. Jesus declares, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live even though he dies.” Even though death will make its unwanted visit, Jesus breaks through the gloom of death with the assurance that he will raise all the dead and give eternal life in heaven to those who believe in him.

It’s not so important how people remember us after we die. What is important is that we know Jesus before we die. When questions about death plague our minds, Jesus teaches us to be confident that through faith in him we will live forever!

Prayer:
Jesus, fill my mind with the knowledge that you defeated the power of death by your resurrection from the dead. Teach my heart to trust in your promise that you will raise me from the grave and give me eternal life. Amen.

This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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BULLETIN- MAY 13, 2018 – THE SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER

ST. JOHN’S & EMMANUEL

Evangelical Lutheran Churches

Montello & Mecan, WI

Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod

C:\Users\secretary\Downloads\jesus32c.jpg

THE SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER

MOTHER’S DAY

MAY 13, 2018


WELCOME GUEST PASTOR JOHN DOLAN

WELCOME TO OUR CHURCH!

We extend a warm welcome to everyone this morning, especially our visitors. In the bulletin you’ll find an outline of today’s service, a calendar, and other bits of information. In the red hymn book you’ll find the hymns we sing and the order of service that we follow. Restrooms and a nursery area are located in the lobby. May God bless our worship!

 

A PERSONAL PRAYER BEFORE WORSHIP

Almighty God, your Son our Savior was taken up in glory and intercedes for us at your right hand. Through your living and abiding Word, give us hearts to know him and faith to follow where he has gone. Bless our worship today and every day. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

GOD’S WORD FOR TODAY Our ascended Lord is in heaven, where he sits at the Father’s right hand and prays for his Church.

ORDER OF SERVICE–LITURGY

The Common Service (hymnal page 15)

NOTE: AT ST. JOHN’S…

SUNDAY SCHOOL SINGS “Jesus’ Ascension” & “Oh, He’s King of Kings” (in place of opening hymn)

NOTE: AT EMMANUEL…

OPENING HYMN 175 “Hail the Day that Sees Him Rise”

(printed in hymnal, all sing)

(Please stand)

LITURGY The Common Service (hymnal page 15, read & sung responsively)

(Please be seated for today’s Bible readings)

TODAY’S THEME The 7th Sunday of Easter (Mother’s Day): The Ascended Lord, Our Great High Priest, Prepares His Church for Its Work

FIRST LESSON Acts 1: 15-26

Preparation by the disciples for witnessing to the world

In those days Peter stood up among the believers (a group numbering about a hundred and twenty) and said, “Brothers, the Scripture had to be fulfilled which the Holy Spirit spoke long ago through the mouth of David concerning Judas, who served as guide for those who arrested Jesus—he was one of our number and shared in this ministry.”

(With the reward he got for his wickedness, Judas bought a field; there he fell headlong, his body burst open and all his intestines spilled out. Everyone in Jerusalem heard about this, so they called that field in their language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.)

“For,” said Peter, “it is written in the book of Psalms,

”‘May his place be deserted; let there be no one to dwell in it,’and,” ‘May another take his place of leadership.’

Therefore it is necessary to choose one of the men who have been with us the whole time the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from John’s baptism to the time when Jesus was taken up from us. For one of these must become a witness with us of his resurrection.”

So they proposed two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. Then they prayed, “Lord, you know everyone’s heart. Show us which of these two you have chosen to take over this apostolic ministry, which Judas left to go where he belongs.” Then they cast lots, and the lot fell to Matthias; so he was added to the eleven apostles.

PSALM 8 (hymnal page 67, cantor sings first line, congregation sings second line, all sing refrains and Gloria)

SECOND LESSON 1 John 4:13-21

We love because he first loved us

We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.

VERSE OF THE DAY Alleluia. Alleluia. Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Alleluia. (John 14:18)

After the Verse of the Day is read, all sing:

“Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!” (hymnal page 18a)

 

(Please stand)

After the announcement of the Gospel, all sing:

“Glory be to you, O Lord!” (hymnal page 18b)

GOSPEL John 17:11b-19 (today’s sermon text)

Jesus prays that his disciples may be protected and sent out into the world

Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name—the name you gave me—so that they may be one as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.

“I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them. I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world. For them I sanctify myself, that they too may be truly sanctified.

After the Gospel, all sing:

“Praise be to you, O Christ!”

APOSTLES’ CREED (hymnal page 19, all read)

(Please be seated)

At Emmanuel, all children ages 2-6 are invited to the parish hall for Nursery Sunday School.

HYMN 359 “Jesus, My Great High Priest” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

SERMON John 17:11b-19

“Your High Priest Prays For You, Me & FRAN”

(Please stand)

LITURGY (hymnal page 20a, all sing)

(Please be seated)

OFFERING, WORSHIPER GREETINGS & FRIENDSHIP REGISTERS

OFFERING PRAYER

(Please stand)

MOTHER’S DAY PRAYER

INTERCESSORY PRAYERS

– For those hospitalized, ill, shut-in and facing trials: George Alexander, Gale “Blackie” Boyd, Alexandria Buehrens (Bob & Carolyn’s great granddaughter), Bob & Carolyn Buehrens, George Chapman, Gene & Sharon Crook, Harley & Liola Crown, Agnes Dassow, Caleb & Emery Degenstein (Mark Emond’s friends), Elaine Emond (Mark’s mother), Marjorie Fabian, Mike Farrell, Donna Gatzke, Kellen Grucza (Judy Fandrey’s daughter), Brian & Bonnie Harmon (Linda Lou Wacholtz’ sister & brother-in-law), Brody Henke, Ardis Henning, Mary Isberner, Geri Kerl (Sue Brown’s mother), Bob Klapper (Sandy’s husband), Doris Klawitter, Anna Madigan, Kerry & Lily Mann, Ruthie Marcelain (Dawn’s granddaughter), Sherry Miller (Candace Sonnenberg’s sister), Steve Parrish, Wayne Riemer, Wilma Rudolph, Bob Schrank, Bill Schroeder (Ashley’s father-in-law), Carol Schumann, Jane Torres (Stacie Starke’s mother), Donny Weber (Betty’s son), Paul Weldon – (added this week: Carol Schumann, Paul Weldon)
– For Todd Dahlke, WELS principal and upper grades teacher currently serving at Trinity–Marshfield, who was called by the Lord though his Church at our 4/29 St. John’s Voters Call meeting to serve at St. John’s Lutheran School as 5-8 teacher and principal
– For Martin Luther College graduates and teachers assigned to serve the Lord in WELS schools

LORD’S PRAYER (hymnal page 20b, all read)

*NOTE: AT EMMANUEL…

LITURGY (hymnal page 25)

(Please be seated)

HYMN 411:1-2 “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

CLOSING PRAYER & BLESSING

CLOSING HYMN 411:3 “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

*NOTE: AT ST. JOHN’S…

HOLY COMMUNION LITURGY (hymnal page 21, sung & read responsively)

(Please be seated for the distribution)

At Emmanuel Ev. Lutheran Church & St. John’s Ev. Lutheran Church we practice closed Communion. If you are a guest at worship today and interested in receiving the Lord’s Supper, please speak with the pastor prior to the service.

DISTRIBUTION HYMN 173 “On Christ’s Ascension I Now Build”, 411:1-2 “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

(Please stand)

SONG OF SIMEON, CLOSING PRAYER & BLESSING (hymnal page 24-25)

(Please be seated)

CLOSING HYMN 411:3 “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” (printed in hymnal, all sing)

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Theme for Next Sunday, May 20, 2018:

Africa Mission Festival–The Day of Pentecost:

The Spirit Gives Life

Note: Please give your completed friendship register page to an usher or pastor as you leave today’s service.

ACTIVITIES FOR THE WEEK MAY 13-MAY 19
Sun. MOTHER’S DAY
8:00 A.M. Emmanuel Worship
8:20 A.M. Emmanuel Nursery Sunday School

(final Sunday School class before summer break)

8:30 A.M. St. John’s Sunday School

(final Sunday School class before summer break)

10:00 A.M. St. John’s Worship with communion
Mon. 6:30 P.M. Senior Choir at St. John’s
7:30 P.M. Adult Bible Study at St. John’s
Tues. 6:00 P.M. Westfield High School Social Media Awareness Presentation
6:30 P.M. Men’s Bible Study at St. John’s
Wed. 10:00 A.M. Adult Bible Study at St. John’s
1:40 P.M. SJS/LL early dismissal
2:15 P.M. Public School Teen Confirmation Class at St. John’s
6:00 P.M. St. John’s Stewardship/Evangelism meeting
6:30 P.M. St. John’s Worship
Thurs.
Fri.
Sat.
SCHEDULE FOR NEXT SUNDAY, May 20, 2018

Africa Mission Festival–The Day of Pentecost: The Spirit Gives Life

8:00 A.M. Emmanuel Mission Festival Worship
10:00 A.M. St. John’s Mission Festival Worship

(meal, presentation by Cameroon Missionary Dan Kroll)

 


See the source imageLIFETOUCH PHOTOS If you were unable to schedule a photo session through Lifetouch for our new church directory and would still like to be in it in order to receive your copy FREE, please send your photo to Pastor Pete or Ciara BY JUNE 14TH. You may also schedule Ciara to take your picture 608-297-2866. Thank you.

WESTFIELD HIGH SCHOOL SOCIAL MEDIA AWARENESS PRESENTATION Tuesday, May 15 at 6:00p.m.!

Childcare, snacks & refreshments will be provided.
If you require childcare, email ages with registration to bourmanm@westfield.k12.wi.us
Social media today is more accessible and popular than ever. It can be a risky and dangerous place for children and young adults. Join us to learn about various types of social media, popular apps including what they look like and their capabilities, and the dangers predators and how they infiltrate popular apps. A live demonstration will be conducted to show how quick a juvenile can be targeted by online predators. Come join us and learn valuable information and resources necessary to create and maintain a safe online environment for our youth in Marquette County.
Sponsored By: Marquette County Sheriff’s Office, Westfield Elementary PTO, Westfield Middle School FIE , Thrivent Financial, St. John’s Church/School Montello, Marquette Adams Telephone Company, & Westfield School District Counseling Departments.

See the source imageMEN’S BIBLE STUDY Jesus says to take up your cross. Why? Do I have to? What does that mean anyway? We will be answering questions like that at the Men’s Bible class this month. “Jesus Cross- and Yours!” is the topic. Come join at 6:30pm in St. John’s lower level, Pastor Dolan is leading a 5-week Men’s Bible Study. Questions? Contact Pastor D at: 608-297-1075 or pastordolan@gmail.com

ST. JOHN’S LITTLE LAMBS
is now accepting enrollment for the 2018-2019 school year.  Registration forms are available in the office.  If you would like more information about Little Lambs please call the school at (608) 297-2866 to schedule a time to come visit Little Lambs.

MISSION FESTIVAL ON SUNDAY, MAY 20, OFFERS FOOD FOR BODY & SOUL.  Mark your calendars for a full day celebrating missions!  Cameroon, Africa, will be highlighted at mission festival services at 8 a.m. at Emmanuel and at 10 a.m. at St. John’s with Missionary Daniel Kroll.  A freewill offering will be taken at both services to support the work in Cameroon. 

   The day offers you a “4-Ps Mission Meal” of Preaching- Pasta-Pie- Presentation.  Pastor Kroll will share food for the soul as he preaches God’s Word at both worship services.  Then, ALL are invited for food for the body at a meal of pasta (lasagna) and homemade pie (Freewill Offering), at St. John’s, beginning around 11:30 a.m. and hosted as a Thrivent Action Team event by women of the LWMS.  Finally, more food for the soul as Missionary Kroll and his wife Karen do a tag-team presentation about Cameroon at St. John’s.

C:\Users\secretary\Downloads\842x342-Missions-Cameroon1.jpg    The Lutheran Church of Cameroon (LCC) is on a journey to build up the church and the faith of her members in a land filled with ancestor worship, witchcraft, and false teachers.  Ten seminarians are finishing the second of their five-year seminary. This is big news as there have been no new pastors since 1999—when these men graduate, their pastorate will have more than doubled!  Your prayer and monetary support is vital.  Cameroon currently operates on project funds rather than being part of the WELS budget.


VOTING INFORMATION FOR ST. JOHN’S LUTHERAN WOMEN’S MISSIONARY SOCIETY (LWMS) All confirmed women are eligible to vote for officers on the International Board of Directors and for mission projects for 2018-2019. A voting station is located in the linkway today. Voting continues through Sunday, May 20. Results of this voting will be announced at the LWMS Convention in Green Bay in June.

CHRISTIAN ONE-LINERS (from a WELS pastor): “Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous.”

Usher Schedule
May 13 SJ

(with comm)

E

Dennis Wacholtz; Chief, Kevin Kaul, Scott Ritz, James Kunde, Ken Borzick

Brian Ninnemann, Warren Buchholz, DuWayne Sommerfeld

May 20 SJ

E

Jack Yates; Chief, Ben Emond, Tyler Emond, Thomas Wojtalewicz, James Henke

Don Stelter, Jim Stuempges, Joe Heller

May 27 SJ

(with comm)

E

Don Smith; Chief, Paul Van Treeck, Martin Schmanke, Lee Ollendorf, Aaron Kendall

Darrell Buchholz, Bob Ferber, Paul Dahlke

St. John’s Greeter Schedule
May 13 Karl Whitrock & Elsa Russell
May 20 Al & Carolyn Rosenthal
May 27 Dixie Wagner & Bernice Wegner
Attendance Emmanuel St. John’s
5-6 5-9 Ascension 100 15 120 22
St. John’s Altar Committee

May 2018

Jennie Utke

&

Susan Brown

Welcome To Our Visitors!

Please Sign Our Guest Register

Visit our website & Facebook link at: www.stjohnsmontello.org

https://www.facebook.com/St-Johns-Evangelical-Lutheran-Church-107160252675/

Pastor Peter Zietlow Office (608) 297-2321

Cell & Text (608) 408-7830, E-mail: zietlowpl6@hotmail.com

Principal Tim Hemling (608) 745-2549

Teacher Karin Stellick (920) 342-3689

Teacher Sara Borck (858) 731-7919

Teacher Sandra Hemling (608) 745-2776

Parish/School Secretary Ciara Neuhauser (608) 297-2866

Altar Ladies Elaine Kelm (920) 344-0025 &

Carolyn Rosenthal 589-5036

Mail to: 313 E Montello St, Montello, WI 53949

OR scsecretary@stjohnsmontello.org

Winnebago Lutheran Academy

Principal Mr. David Schroeder/WLA office (920) 921-4930

WLA website: www.wlavikings.org

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Going to Prepare a Place – May 11, 2018

In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
John 14:2-3

Going to Prepare a Place


Daily Devotion – May 11, 2018

Devotion based on John 14:2-3

See series: Devotions

Imagine that you are planning on going camping with some friends, when they call a couple of days before the trip and say, “Hey, we got off work a day early, so we will go and get a couple of good sites. If you want to bring your tent by, we will set it up for you, start a fire, and have dinner waiting for you when you get there.” They would never do such a thing, if they didn’t think you were coming to join them.

When Jesus promised that he was going to prepare a place for his disciples, he knew what lay ahead of them. He knew their faith would be severely tested, because soon he would be taken from them. Judas would leave only to come back with a detachment of soldiers to arrest him in the garden. Then Jesus would be detained and put on trial where he was mocked, spit upon, and beaten. After being crucified and buried, it would seem like Jesus had left them forever. But then, after three days he rose from the dead and appeared to them on many occasions. He was back! Until…forty days later he visibly ascended into heaven.

Sometimes we feel so alone, don’t we? Sure, we might have friends and family all around, but what about Jesus? He doesn’t always seem so close as we struggle to understand all the hate and violence in the world around us. He doesn’t always seem so near when we find ourselves falling into the same temptations that so easily lead us astray. Where has he gone?

He has gone to prepare a place for those who repent and trust in him. And this isn’t just some wishy-washy-pie-in-the-sky promise. Jesus is doing something for you right now. He left his disciples the first time to give himself as the once and for all sacrifice for sin. Now he has left to prepare a place for you in heaven. Why would he ever do such a thing, if he didn’t think that you were coming to join him?

Prayer:
Dear Jesus, when we feel all alone, help us to listen to your promises and be assured that one day we will go to be with you in the place you have prepared for us. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Look Up – May 10, 2018

After the Lord Jesus had spoken to [the disciples], he was taken up into heaven and he sat at the right hand of God.
Mark 16:19

Look Up


Daily Devotion – May 10, 2018

Devotion based on Mark 16:19

See series: Devotions

I am left-handed. That puts me in the minority. That also connects me to the Latin root word for left, which is sinister. Furthermore, if that were not bad enough, what about Judgment Day where the goats on the left are told to depart from Christ and enter hell?

Before you start feeling sorry for left-handers, please stop to consider that we are all sinister goats in some way or the other. Every new day is a day of “impending evil.” My sinful nature does not take a day off or release its grip from me so that I have the occasional, blissful, sin-free day. No, each day I am aroused to new selfish desires that lead to lust, greed, envy, and the like. Each day a sinful world offers fields of garbage upon which goats may graze.

So, what is a goat to do? Look up! Look up and see the risen, victorious Christ ascend to heaven to sit at the right hand of God. The right hand—a special place of blessing and honor; not to mention power, glory, and might. From this exalted place, Jesus looks down on the world in which he lived as the perfect shepherd of the sheep. He looks with loving forgiveness. He looks on us as the divine mediator of the new covenant of peace.

Jesus sees all that is sinister and still extends mercy and forgiveness over the whole world. He still shepherds his sheep with power from on high. The Lord is my shepherd … not my executioner. Surely, I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, by your mercy you call us into your eternal flock where we live as sheep who safely graze now and forever. We thank and praise you our Good Shepherd and God’s right-hand man. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Encouragement from the Lord – May 9, 2018

When [Barnabas] arrived [in Antioch] and saw the evidence of the grace of God, he was glad and encouraged them all to remain true to the Lord with all their hearts.
Acts 11:23

Encouragement from the Lord


Daily Devotion – May 9, 2018

Devotion based on Acts 11:23

See series: Devotions

Everybody likes to be encouraged. Encouragements can refresh us, cheer us up, and make us feel better. An encouragement from God’s Word can do even more than that.

In the early days of the Christian church there was an encourager known as Barnabas. The church was being persecuted. Anti-Christian forces were at work trying to stop the message of the Savior and to destroy all who believed it. Believers were tempted to turn away from their faith in Jesus and to give in to doubt and despair. Barnabas did more than cheer them up. He gave his fellow believers a place to hide. He pointed them to the Lord, their Savior.

We need that same kind of encouragement. We do not expect life to be easy, but sometimes problems pile up to the point where we may begin to wonder if we’re being punished. Even on a good day, it can feel at times as though the Lord is far away.

Listen, my fellow sinner. The Lord knows every sin we have committed, but he has already paid for them all in full. Our Savior Jesus died for the sins of all. This means that whatever it is that we deserve for our sins, we will never be punished, not even a little bit.

The Lord is your hiding place, friend. Take shelter in his saving promises, because the Lord is on your side.

Prayer:
Dear Lord, no encouragement can compare to the good news that Jesus is my Savior. Encourage me with this good news and help me to use that same good news to encourage others. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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The Danger- May 8, 2018

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God.
1 John 4:7

The Danger


Daily Devotion – May 8, 2018

Devotion based on 1 John 4:7

See series: Devotions

In the world of 21st Century philosophy, Charles Taylor is a pretty big name. According to thebestschools.org website, Taylor “has been influential in defining how we conceive of ourselves in the modern world.” In a book entitled, “Dilemmas and Connections”, Taylor makes a compelling observation about the secular mind and what motivates the secular mind to do good for other people.

A paraphrase of Taylor’s observation is as follows: People with a secular mindset do good for others because, among other things, it makes them feel good about themselves. However, cautions Taylor, the danger with this kind of motivation is that it can easily slip into feelings of superiority and even contempt for the very people you are trying to help. This can especially happen, says Taylor, when the people you are trying to help are not as responsive or grateful as you think they should be.

Let’s take the observation of Charles Taylor and turn it on ourselves. As you work to do good for others, how do you react when the people you are trying to help are not as responsive or as grateful as you think they should be? Does your attitude harden, even just a bit, into an attitude of superiority? Does it even darken into an attitude of contempt? Are there times when a bitter voice within you says, “After all I’ve done for them, this is the thanks I get?”

When I slip into such thoughts is when I need to stop and realize something. I need to stop and realize that I have just tipped my hand as to how rancid my motivation has been. I need to stop and realize that I have been living my life for myself. And there is no uglier form of idolatry than that.

That’s why we need Jesus. Out of a kind of selfless love we will never fully comprehend, the Son of God lived a life of perfect service on our behalf. Then he took upon himself the guilt of all of our self-serving motives, our hidden agendas, our false humilities, and he paid the price in full at the cross. And now, as our living Savior, he comes to us in his Word, calling us to repentance, washing us clean, renewing our hearts, empowering us to love others as he has loved us.

What drives real love is not my self-serving pride. What drives real love is Jesus’ love for me.

Prayer:
Lord Jesus, forgive my self-serving agendas. Empower me to love others with your love for me. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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Remain in My Love – May 7, 2018

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.”
John 15:9

Remain in My Love


Daily Devotion – May 7, 2018

Devotion based on John 15:9

See series: Devotions

“Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so. Little ones to him belong. They are weak, but he is strong.” The words of this song are simple, yet they are profound. Think about it, Jesus loves me! And not only does Jesus love me, God the Father also loves me. As a result, my life is blessed richly and daily with everything I need. What more could I desire than knowing God the Father preserves and protects me from every danger? Now, couple this with Jesus’ unselfish and self-sacrificing love, I should be able to live every day rejoicing in the love which is mine. But do I?

Every day I can be certain of the love my Lord and Savior has for me. Still, every day I am tempted to question his love. I am distracted by things that the world offers. My attention is drawn to all the things I do not have. The world wants me to cut my ties with the Lord and pursue its empty pleasures and fleeting treasures. The devil also joins with the world to form an unholy alliance. He fills my heart with discontent and greed. He seeks to deceive me into believing God is withholding something from me. Worse yet, he looks to make me believe that God is punishing me by not giving me my heart’s desire.

The only way I can combat the world’s influence and the devil’s deceptions is to focus my attention solely on the words and work of my Savior. Jesus exhorts me to “remain in his love.” He, then, strengthens and encourages me to do just that. Through his precious life given into death, through his resounding victory over the devil, and through his never-failing promises I can remain in him and in his love.

Yes, Jesus loves me, and I want to remain in his love.

Prayer:
O precious Savior, forgive me for not seeing your great love and making it my most priceless possession. Strengthen my faith to hold on to you and to every gracious gift you have secured for me. Amen.

DailyCreative Commons License Devotions are brought to you by WELS and www.WhatAboutJesus.com.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc. ™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

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