Pastor’s Column RELATIONSHIPS, ROLES, AND ROMANCE February is the month when our thoughts turn to love and romance. Some would say it’s because of the long winter we experience in the north, but true romantics know that February is when Valentine’s Day occurs. To the cold, calculating male that just means another opportunity to fail. But to the man who really wants to be a good lover and friend and partner to his darling spouse, this is the opportunity to say all those things that don’t very often get said, to buy those flowers and candy that melt her heart, and to prove once again that you really, truly do love her. With all that romance in the air, one would think that love and marriage and family would be on everyone’s mind. But, alas, if the truth be known, these commodities are becoming more and more of an endangered species. Data that was released just in the last few months reported that married couples represented just 48% of American households in 2010. This was slightly less than in 2000, but far below the 78% of households occupied by married couples in 1950. W. Bradford Wilcox, the director of the National Marriage Project at the University Page 2
of Virginia, argues that the retreat from marriage is bad for society because it means less security for children. He said, “It’s troubling because those kids are much more likely to be exposed to instability, complex family relations and poverty.” If we determine to look for blame, there is plenty to go around. For both men and women there seems to be a significant lack of understanding as to what marriage really can be, and the health that it brings to individual people, their children, and to a culture. Study after study has shown that married people tend to experience more happiness in life than unmarried people. Other studies have proven how much better children do when they grow up in a home with both a mom and a dad. This even holds true when mom and dad do not have the best of relationships! Divorce has become the “easy out” in far too many homes today. Our staff could tell you story after story where divorce has been the choice that was made, but the problems have not been solved. In fact, in virtually every case we have dealt with, divorce has only compounded the problems of the people involved. Is it possible that God really did design a plan for our lives that works, but we have distorted it to the point where it seems no longer
recognizable? That is a subject that is well worth the investment of our time and study. Starting the first weekend of February we are embarking on a series of teachings called THE PERFECTS. You will meet this family each week of the series and you will enjoy their antics as they struggle to make their relationships work. On both our campuses we will be doing this series with a panel of presenters. Whether you are married, single, divorced, widowed, a single parent, or a blended family, I think you will find the topics relevant to your life. This is a critical series for us to tackle, and we are looking forward to it. We are not content to just point out the problems we are up against. There have to be some answers to the situations we find ourselves dealing with, and there are. God is the designer of marriage and the family, and He has a lot to say about how all our relationships work. Without a doubt, we have all made some mistakes in these crucial areas of our lives, but rather than moping about in the mud of our mistakes, let’s find the answers to get us back on solid ground. God intended His creation to enjoy this life He has given us. He designed the relationships of our lives to bring us joy and fulfillment. Therefore, it is a wise investment of your time to find out what God has for you, so that you can live out your life in a meaningful way. As your pastor, I would recommend you block off the next four weekends so that you don’t miss any of the teachings that will be prepared with you in mind. In fact, if you know someone in your circle of acquaintances who could use some help in this vital arena, why not invite them to come with you? It just might be the most helpful thing you have ever done for that person. We’ll see you this weekend.
was reading my daily devotion from the “Lead Like Jesus” series and the topic of the day came from John 13:13‐15. The verse says, “Now that I, Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you should also wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.” Who has walked along side you and set an example for you to follow? Jesus walked along side his disciples, instructed them, guided them, prayed with them, fellowshipped with them, loved and cared for them. He wanted them to imitate him. Jesus still does that for us today! We need to follow his example, to fellowship with others, to love and care for others, pray with others, to instruct others for him. Children like to imitate others, especially grown ups. They look up to adults or older children. Children are like sponges, they soak up everything. Unfortunately, they will soak up what is good and what is not so good, but we can be examples of what is good. We can instruct, guide, fellowship and pray with children. We can love and care for them just like Jesus did and still does! Who are we going to be Jesus for today? There are many opportunities to be Jesus for a child. Preschool Promiseland may be just the place Page 4
for you! Would you consider serving once every 3 months? From families serving together, to empty nesters, we can use you! If you have never served in the preschool area, come on down and check it out. We will be happy to show you the classes. Contact Julie Overturf or myself if you are interested! Paula Heil
This month I had the opportunity to interview a few of our Promiseland Preschool Church workers. These are some of the faces that you may see on a Saturday evening or on Sunday morning, as you drop off your children in the preschool area. Eleanor Liebherr and Savannah Guenther work in the Promiseland Preschool area on a regular basis. They are willing workers that enjoy what they do. Here is their interview.
Tell a little about yourself. Eleanor: My name is Eleanor Liebherr and I am 10 ½ years old. I go to Alexander Middle School in Nekoosa. I live in Port Edwards. My favorite colors are blue, purple, pink and white. My favorite foods are pizza, donuts, and cookies.
Why I enjoy working in Promiseland?: “It’s amazing to see them (kids) grow and to teach them.”
Why did you first volunteer?:: “I wanted to spend time with my sister and Julie and they needed help…”
Can you recite the 23rd Psalm? All the kids in IMPACT have been learning and memorizing the 23rd Savannah: My name is Savannah Guenther, and I am 17 years old. I go Psalm. Come down to the kids wing to Lincoln High School, and I want to and check out the pictogram the go college for either Pediatric kids have been using to help them Nursing or Primary Education. with their memorization!
How long have you been volunteering in the Preschool Promiseland area? Eleanor: About 1 ½ years. Savannah: I have been volunteering in the Preschool Promiseland area for 4 years.
Explain how you first came to volunteer in the Promiseland area? Eleanor: I wanted to spend time with my sister and Julie and they needed help in the preschool area. Savannah: One of my friends was helping out and I came and helped them and have been helping ever since.
Share a moment that made you say to yourself, ”This is why I enjoy working in the Promiseland Preschool area.” Eleanor: I was playing with a little girl, and she was smiling from ear to ear. That was the best time I’ve ever had in Promiseland. Savannah: I absolutely love sharing God’s love with the kids. I love it when they run up to me and give me a giant hug! It’s amazing to see them grow and to teach them.
When you are in the classroom, describe what a typical class time is like. Eleanor: Sometimes we play with Play dough, otherwise we have play time. Then we do the Bible story and sometimes we act out the story. We also might go on the playground. Then we have a snack and craft time. Savannah: Usually we have playtime first, (play dough, puzzles, toys, instruments) and then we have story time. After that we make a craft relating to the Bible story.
If you are given only one chance to share with others why they should volunteer, what would be that one thing? Eleanor: You get to see the kids do whatever they want to for playtime and you get to see little kids of different ages learn about Jesus. It’s amazing! Savannah: There is nothing better than walking into the church and seeing the kid’s faces light up when they see you. At a young age, Eleanor and Savannah saw a need and said, yes I will help. They started out by helping someone else and in return have been blessed. They are making a difference in children’s lives. Thank you Eleanor and Savannah and to all of our volunteers for seeing the need and then saying yes, I will help. Paula Heil
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would like to take this opportunity to give you a brief overview of what we have been doing in the past year and what we believe God’s direction is for the future. Some of you may “We appreciate already know that we all the prayers, just completed love and sup‐ memorizing “The Books to us port given of the Bible”; all 66 of from our them! Now we are church family.” challenging the children for the next 6 weeks to memorize “Psalm 23”; all 6 verses. This all started from our new curriculum “What’s in the Bible?” Each week our services include interactive video, leader directed small/ large group questions, opportunities to find answers directly out of the bible (does anyone remember or know what a sword drill is anymore?), and of course, fun & active games! We have seen an increase in visitors and enjoy celebrating each child’s birthday for that week. None of this would be possible if it wasn’t for the great team God has been building and putting into place up in KIDZONE. Currently we have 4 teams of Adult Leaders, 20 JLT’s (Junior Leadership Team) members, and Adult Helpers, rotating on a monthly basis. We have been praying and believing that God will bring in more helpers as our attendance
continues to grow and we follow His leading. Starting in January we will continue with “What’s in the Bible?” and memorizing scripture each weekend. After completing Psalm 23, our next challenge will be The Lord’s Prayer. On the last weekend of every month we are going to have a “Celebration Weekend”! The weekend will start off with the children going directly up to KIDZONE and check in before service. Service will begin with “Live” Worship. Some of our own youth band members from [un] common will be coming to lead us. After worship there will be a brief message, and then we will break up into small groups to discuss topics that relate to everyday life. Coming in March is March Missions Madness. It’s a month to look at other cultures and how we can pray and give so they will know Jesus Christ. We are so excited to see what God is going to do in the lives of our kids as we dig into His Word and find out what HE has to say to 1st‐6th graders. We appreciate all the prayers, love and support given to us from our church family. Mr. Jim & Ms. Ronda IMPACT KIDS MINISTRY KIDZONE Children's Church Director
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iLead ............................Feb. 4 Youth Superbowl Party ........... .....................................Feb. 5 Youth I Heart Dodge Ball Tourney ......................Feb. 12
Youth Winter Blitz .................. ............................ March 9-11
600 7th Street, PO Box 40 Port Edwards, WI 54469 Phone: 715-887-3565 Fax: 715-887-3575
Unquenchable ............Feb. 26
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Kidz Blazt............ Feb 24 & 25
C h r i s t i a n
Baby Dedication .........Feb. 19
F e l l o w s h i p
Beef N Ice...................Feb. 17