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DEVOTION: By this we know love that He laid down His life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:16-18
"It was the best of times; it was the worst of times ...."
That's the way Charles Dickens began his novel, A Tale of Two Cities. Those words also accurately describe the last few weeks in the life of a 12-year-old North Carolina boy, Nolan Turner.
First, let's talk about the worst of times. Turner was born with Spina bifida, a birth defect which caused him to be confined to a wheelchair. Even though he has been saddled with a physical challenge, he has risen to that challenge and is an avid player of wheelchair basketball.
On March 22nd Turner was trying to raise some money, so he might introduce his classmates to his favorite sport. He was doing okay with that task when a man came up to him, made some small talk, picked up Turner's donation jar and walked away.
Turner called out, but the man disappeared through a nearby woods. He disappeared with $250 he had stolen from a boy in a wheelchair.
Now I know Luther said we are supposed to "put the best construction on everything," and I've tried hard to do so, but, bottom line, I can't think of a single best construction I can place on someone who would do such a thing. The culprit makes "stealing candy from a baby" look like charity work. It's the kind of thing that can turn a young man to bitterness.
And now, ladies and gentlemen, the best of times.
People who heard about what happened to Turner were shocked such a thing could happen. Now those folks, many of whom were Christian, didn't react with mere words and talk; they responded in deed.
Since his story hit the news Nolan has been flooded with notes, letters, cards and cash from these folks who wanted to reflect the love of the Lord Jesus. They wanted to assure the 12-year-old that the Holy Spirit can inspire more people to do good, than the devil can motivate toward evil.
Now I don't know if the charitable folks of the world always outnumber the stealing folks, but I'm glad in Nolan Turner's case that is the way the story concludes.
God's people loved not just in word and talk -- they loved in deed and truth.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, if it be possible, let the work of those who would steal from children in wheelchairs be hindered and halted. Turn around such sad, sinful souls, so they may know their sins can be forgiven by the Lord Jesus. Further, may the work done by Christians in the Savior's Name be blessed. In Jesus' Name. Amen. _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________ YESTERDAY'S QUIZ: What was Shimei the Ramathite in charge of? He was in charge of the vineyards. (Way to go Dianne!) ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ TODAY'S QUIZ: Who was the director of music under David? _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ CATECHISM Question: Why do we say God has made me"? Answer: God created the first man and woman, and God has created each one of us. ________________________________________________________________________________________________ CHURCH CALENDAR Mon- 5-6:15 confirmation; 6:15- 6:45 8th grade review for questioning; youth group 6:45 Tues- 9-2 quilters; Bible study 11:30-12:15; Alpha 6:30-8:30 Wed- bells 6:30; choir 7:30Thurs- pastor's meeting in New Melle Thurs- creative crafters 9:30-11:30: 8th grade questioning and reception 7pm Fri- newsletter assembly 9am Sat- worship 5pm Sun- early Bible study 8am; 8th grade confirmation service 9am Sunday school/Bible class 10:15am; worship baptism of Grace, Will and Tyler Donsky and receiving of their mom Julie into membership and PRESCHOOL KIDS SINGING 11am ________________________________________________________________________________________________ NEWS: SUNDAY SCHOOL KIDS SINGING AT WHISPERING PINES THIS SUNDAY at 10:20. Either meet here at school at 10:15 or just meet over at the big building at Whipsering Pines at 10:20. Let's have a nice big crowd to show the folks how we love Jesus!! _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ PEOPLE GETTING BAPTIZED AND RECEIVED INTO MEMBERSHIP THIS WEEKEND (All in the 11am service) Baptisms: Grace, Will and Tyler Donsky; their mom Julie being received into membership.
Come and hear the kids give their testimonies during the sermon time. Brian Berryman, Brooke Vossen, Anna Sutherland, Sarah Bunge, and Teresa Gabel will all tell us about what Jesus, confirmation, and faith mean to them.
LITTLE LAMBS REGISTRATION FOR THE THREE YEAR OLD CLASS IS STILL OPEN!!! Children should be 3 years old by August 1. Call the church office to sign them up TODAY! _____________________________________________________________________________________________________ TAILGATE SALE AND FLEA MARKET iS SATURDAY, MAY 5, 7am-1pm This is held in conjunction with the Ladies Aid Craft and Bake Sale and Luncheon
Two ways you can help. 1. You can donate GENTLY used items to Little Lambs who will sell them under the pavilion that day. You can buy a parking spot or two or three for $10 a piece and sell your own things
Donations are going to the purchase of a "hands on" science lab and curriculum for Little Lambs.
Drop of dates are April 30-May 4. ___________________________________________________________________________________________ HELP TO FEED HUNGRY KIDS IN WARREN COUNTY WITH OPERATION BACKPACK In the preschool room there is a box that you can put food in to feed extremely low income children in Warren County. Many of these kids get fed every day at school for breakfast and lunch, but what about the weekend? What the food listed below does for many of these children is gets them through the weekend when food is especially scarce.
If you want more information about this program or you want to donate money to this causeyou can call Erin Waters at 359-9219 or email her at email@example.com.
Here is the list of food you can bring cereal (single serve sizes) oatmeal (instant packets) hot chocolate mix juice boxes peanut butter jelly (squeezable bottles) soup spaghettios or beefaroni mac and cheese corn green beans granola bars fruit snacks pudding cup raisin boxes applesauce cups fruit cups cereal bards pretzels individually wrapped crackers or cookies bread ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ STEWARDSHIP SPOLIGHT FOR THIS MONTH IS LUTHERAN HOUR MINISTRIES This month's mission spolight is TURNING POINT. Turning Point is the emergency women's (and their children's) shelter in Warren County. If women feel they are in danger or they have no where else to turn they can call Turning Point and receive the help they need.
It is a worthwhile and well established mission to support. Go to http://turningpointdvs-com.doodlekit.com/home to check out more about it and to donate directly to it. You can also donate by using your special offering envelopes and writing Turning Point on the memo line on your check. _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
PRAYERS: (If I have missed anyone please let me know.)
For KARIN KLAUSTERMEIER'S DAD, BOB LAMPEN, who is dealing with some cancer troubles and recovering from a stroke.
For DOLORES DEBLAZE'S SISTER ALINE HOWELL, who is recovering well and has been able to get out of the hospital on schedule.
For KEN DOVE who has been able to go home after surgery.
For CAROLINE BUELTMANN who is recovering at her daughter's home from some heart troubles.
For PAUL TOEDEBUSCH who is undergoing more treatments for cancer.
For LIBBY PAILER as she continues to recover well at home from heart surgery.
For DOLORES DEBLAZE as she deals with chemo treatments for stage four lung cancer.
For JEANETTE KOEHLER who is recovering well at the Cedars.
For JONAS BORCHERT, grandson of Don Nolte, who is improving well and is gaining strength as he deals with his cancer.
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The mission of St. John's Lutheran Church is to preach the Word of God in its purity and to teach this Word to all people. We do so through the means God has given us, the Sacraments of Holy Baptism and Holy Communion.
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