Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church - Marshfield, WI

June Newsletter 2021

“And God blessed them…” Genesis 1:28

The word blessing in the book of Genesis is a key word that flows through the entire book. Used more than a dozen times in Genesis alone, it is placed at key moments between God and his chosen people.  God blesses his creatures in creation.  God blesses Noah after the flood.  God blesses Abraham and through him, all nations will be blessed.  God blesses Jacob.  Each time the blessing is tied to a promise from God.

Now the word blessing is not some cute word that sounds nice, nor is it some theory that we can think about.  Nor is it something that you have to work at before God ‘rewards’ you with it.
Blessing is something that God freely gives because that is who He is.  After creating the world by speaking, the first thing that God does with his creatures is that he blesses them with his words.  If God’s word created the universe, then when God speaks a blessing, it also creates that which God speaks.   In fact, each time the word blessing is used it is something that God does.
In fact, when God blesses in the Old Testament, it is often connected with the idea of a child, a descendant.  Adam and Eve are blessed to have children.  God recommits this blessing of a child with Noah.  God blesses Sarah’s barren womb to bring forth a child that will bless all the earth.  Jacob tells Judah that the future of his children will bring a blessing to the earth.

This blessing comes to fruition, literally, in the coming of that child, Jesus Christ.  God’s blessing that he gives in Genesis is directly connected to the coming of the Savior of our race.

And Jesus continues this blessing from God.  Now that Jesus came, Jesus then tells us who he is blessing and who is blessed on this earth.  He tells us on the sermon of the mount that the people who are blessed by him are the poor, the weak, the sinner, the persecuted for his sake.  Christ’s blessing is found in what is often considered barren and weak in this world, because it is from these places of nothingness that God is able to give his creative blessing.
Here in Jesus, we find out that you are blessed.  And God’s blessing brings forth life, regeneration, creation, and healing.  That can only come to the dead, to the shattered, to the destroyed and to the hurting.    

Or as Jesus himself says, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father.  Come and inherit the kingdom prepared for you from before the foundation of the earth.”

To be blessed by God is not just a matter of material blessings coming your way.  To be blessed by God is to participate in his creative, redemptive work in Jesus Christ.
God grants that to you for our Lord Jesus’ sake.  Amen.

This month I have a shorter letter.  With it being June, there is not much to say on my end, but plenty of plans and youth events that are recorded in this newsletter.

Fall Schedule:
Beginning after Labor Day, here is the Worship and Sunday School schedule:

Wednesday Morning Chapel: 9:00am
Thursday Evening Service 6:30pm
Sunday Morning Service: 9:00am
Sunday School: 10:15am

The reasoning for this all was fleshed out greatly last month, so I do not want to consume space again here, but to summarize: after looking at the big picture and praying for everything in our ministry and the priorities that I want for you in Jesus Christ, this was how the pieces best fit together.  If you have questions or comments, please come talk to me! I will enjoy hearing them and want to hear them.

Worship 101:
Tuesday nights at 6:00pm, come out to church as we discuss worship.  Everything from what worship is, why we do what we do, to even the structure, purpose and history of the service itself.  People of all ages are welcome to attend.  This will go through August.

Read the Bible:
Want to read the Bible?  Need help in getting through it?  Want to be apart of something that will go through the Scripture in person on Sunday, through weekly articles and videos?  Come join us after Sunday Service for Bible Class as we spend the next year going through it together.  Whether you want to actively participate, or sit back and just listen, there is an option for everyone.  Come whenever, you don’t need to be active every week.  This will hopefully instill good habits and understanding into our God’s Word!

Offerings were a bit down in May, but we are still over $9,000 ahead. We were also able to give $2413 to Shirley’s House of Hope from the tithe (plus the usual $2500 to the North Wisconsin District). In June we will be supporting the Lutheran Bible Translators. They work to translate the Bible for those who don’t have it in their own language.

The Building Fund is doing well. We have $70,000 in the account right now. Some of this will be used to pay for the necessary brickwork and new windows later this summer.
July Voters Meeting:
The July Voters meeting has been set for Sunday, July 25th at 10:30am. This will follow the 9:00am service.  Next month for the newsletter, I will have a list of things that we will discuss and what needs our attention.  One thing right now: We still need a Vice President.  I will not let the meeting go on or adjourn until that position is filled.  It needs to happen.

If you have thoughts or items to be put on the agenda, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can add them to our list and be ready for them when we gather to discuss.  As always, give us a call or contact us with any questions or clarifications that we need to make on our end.
That is all for this month.  Please be sure to look at the updates from Tammy and the events for our youth that are coming up with VBS and Sunday School. 
In Christ our Lord,

Pastor Andrew Belt
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