Daily Devotion: Tuesday, January 6, 2015

As the body of Christ, we strive to make disciples of all, focusing on the next generation, through growing...
UP in God's Word and Sacrament
OUT into the community by caring for physical and spiritual need
TOGETHER in fellowship to build lasting relationships in Christ

DEVOTION:  After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision.  "Do not be afraid, Abram.  I am your shield, your very great reward."  Genesis 15:1
Do you like rewards?  Usually rewards are earned.  You get rewards on your credit cards by using them and spending so much money.  You get a reward at your job by working hard, doing the right things, going the extra mile, and doing well at your job.  You get a reward in a sport by winning. 
        With God it is different.  In fact, look at what it says above.  God tells Abram "I am your reward."  Usually we think of God giving us things as our reward.  he gives us all that we need for this body and life.  he gives us peace.  He gives us forgiveness.  He gives us love.  We think of those as the rewards of God, but really God Himself is our shield and our very great reward.  We don't need stuff. We don't need good feelings?  We don't need all those creature comforts.  We don't even need food, clothing or shelter, because even though those provide us with physical comfort they can't keep us from eternal death.  Only God, through His Son, can keep us from that.  All we need is GOD! 
          There is an older contemporary song that has as its title, "You Are My All In All".  This is the ultimate truth!  God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is our all in all!  He is all we need.  Therefore we do not fear though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.  We don't need to be afraid off anything even and especially death.  We may have pain for a time but the pain will end.  We may have to deal with sadness but the sadness won't last.  We may go through something very uncomfortable and difficult, but in the end, as we look back at it, we will say "Eh, it wasn't that bad after all." 
         Live in this truth today!  Live in God's peace knowing that He is your shield and your very great reward! 
Let us pray:  Lord God shield me from Satan's attacks.  Shield me from temptation.  Shield me from unbelief.  Thank you for being the only thing I will ever truly need.  Amen.

YESTERDAY"S QUIZ ANSWER:    Who was Lot?  (Here's an extensive and wonderful answer from Dianne Hance)  Lot was the nephew of Abram. Lot and Abram parted ways and Lot went to Sodom.  Bad choice, this was a very bad city
filled with bad people.  So bad God wanted to destroy it.  Abram pleaded with the Lord to spare the city but to no
avail.  He did however, send two angles to get Lot and his family out before the destruction.  Lot's future son-in-laws
thought he was kidding and stayed.  Lot pleaded with the angles so he would not have to go to the mountains but to a
small town called Zoar.  The angles said to hurry up because they could do nothing until Lot, his wife and daughters
were safe.  The Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah.  Lot's wife looked back, and she became a
pillar of salt.
TODAY'S QUIZ: Who was Eliezer of Damascus?
Tues- Quilting 9-2; Bible study 2; Building committee meeting 7pm
Wed- Jonesburg Nursing Home worship 10:30; Choir 7
Thurs- Karate 5pm; Praise Band practice 6pm
Sat- Men's breakfast 8am; Worship 5pm
Sun- Worship 8:30; Sunday school 9:45; Worship 11; Elder's meeting noon
Acolyte- 8:30- Devin Miller, 11- George Pezold
Ushers- Dave Winter, Gary Scott, Larry Schulze, Scott Schulze
Altar- Set up- Marilyn Foster and Sue Ruhl; Clean Up- Joanne Hachtel
Communion Assistants- Sat- Jim Rahn; 8:30- Rich Talbert; 11- Steve McDowell
Greeters- 8:30- Erv Yoder  11- Robines
Lay readers- Sat- Jim Rahn; 8:30- Steve McDowell; 11- Kailyn Blechle
Sat Pianist- Kathy Barrow
Menu:  Pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage
Bible Study-  What does the Bible say about homosexuality and how should we as Christians deal with issues concerning it?
Please let me know if you are coming and invite friends and your sons/grandsons
Just because the Christmas program is over doesn't mean that Sunday school is. 
Parents, please be faithful in getting your kids to Sunday school!  It is very important that they grow in their faith on an ongoing basis!  Plus our Sunday school teachers really want to see them and teach them all about God!

We began our study of the book of Acts yesterday!  Now's the time to get back into Bible study!  Please consider coming and being a part of it.  
Some of you still need to pick up your offering envelopes.  Please get to church and do so ASAP! 
All voting members (men or women) are eligible.  In order for our congregation to have a complete voice we need to have complete representation!  Please call me or reply to this email if you would like to serve your church in this way!!
For LISA PEZOLD AND HER FAMILY as Lisa's dad passed away yesterday.

For CLAIRE JOHNSON who is recovering from a bad car accident at SSM Rehab/Nursing home in Wentzville.
For DANIELLE MEINE, a high school senior and friend to many in the congregation, who is dealing with cancer.
For TODD PONDER, former band teacher/director and friend to many at St. John's, who suffered a massive stroke and can't do anything but move his eyes.  He is unable to breathe on his own. Here is a link to a fund that was started to help the family as they will have astronomical hospital and rehab bills for a long time to come.   At the bottom of the page it also has updates as to his progress.  http://www.gofundme.com/hp1ed8?pc=mb_em

For OUR CONTINUED FREEDOM OF RELIGION AND SPEECH in the United States, that we would continue to be able to freely speak the truth even in the face of opposition.

For our NATION'S MILITARY LEADERS AND SOLDIERS as they figure out what to do about the imminent threats from ISIS.
For MILLIONS OF CHRISTIANS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD, who are being persecuted to the point of death for their faith.

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