GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH &
Children of Grace
Childcare Education Center
4010 9th Ave. West, Hibbing, MN 55746
(218) 263-LOVE (5683)
As I sit looking out my office window pondering what to write one thought keeps crossing my mind, whether I want it to or not, it is January and so we are probably going to see some snow. Snow can make life challenging with all the slippery roads, slushy walkways and shoveling the driveway. Snow can wreak havoc–causing wrecks, power outages and messed-up travel plans. So far, we have a very mild winter but I am tired of shoveling and want safe roads and sidewalks and some warmer weather. Still even it comes at the price of weather related hardships there’s something magical and beautiful about snow and MAYBE just maybe, God can get a few of us (yes, I mean me) to slow down for just a minute and stop and behold His glory. God in His infinite wisdom uses snow for more than just winter precipitation, important as that is.
In the modern world we often walk past the glory of God and hardly notice the reminders of His presence in our lives that God daily provides. As I pause for a moment and look across the parking lot and think about the snow, I realize that it is something that really is quite amazing about it. The remarkable thing about snow, which I’m sure you have probably noticed is that a blanket of snow transforms everything into shining beauty! Everything is pristine, all the imperfections coated in a blanket of white. Even the ugliest, most lifeless, most cluttered landscape is transformed into a beautiful sight. In all of creation, few things are more brilliant, even blinding, than the shining sun on a field of fresh snow. Untouched by human hands, the snow has a purity beyond even the cleanest mountain stream. It’s for this reason that the Psalms and the Prophets speak of snow to describe the promise of forgiveness and cleansing.
God desires to do that to us and for us, think of the power of the gospel to cleanse, to transform us into a creation of beauty in His eyes. Our sins shall be washed clean, and we shall be white as snow. In the Old Testament the prophet Isaiah gives us a beautiful thought 1:18. It says, "Come now, and let us reason together," says the Lord, "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool." White as snow! Can you imagine anything whiter than snow? God says that when he forgives our sins we are even whiter than snow!
Fresh-fallen snow is a message of hope. Every time it snows, we as children of God are given a visible, tangible testimony from God. It speaks of a new beginning, but as the snow itself does not spring up from the earth but falls from the heavens, so our hope does not rest with us. Scripture is very clear on this point: there is a need for repentance a turning away from our sins, but forgiveness comes from the grace of God. The cleansing spoke of in the Bible cannot be the result of human effort-- it is the gift of God because Jesus died for our sins. God sees us like pure white snow because Jesus covers our sins so that God sees us as pure. When we trust in what Jesus did for us on the cross, our sins are covered, like the snow covers the ground. As the snow comes down to blanket the earth in beauty so the grace of forgiveness comes to all who are willing to turn to God from their sins. And one more thing, the snow that comes and covers the earth is FREE. When Jesus offers us forgiveness and to live in heaven with HIM - it is also FREE like the snow. GOD loves us that much!
The snow is nice to look at and it can serve as a reminder to us for something that comes straight out of the Word of God. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.” So, the next time you wake up in the morning to see everything covered with a layer of freshly fallen snow, let it remind you of the way God covers you in Jesus, let it lead you to a greater appreciation of God’s power and give you confidence in His mercy and grace.
We will have an Elder of the Month who is the person people should contact if they have a spiritual concern and aren't able to reach the Pastor. The Elder of the Month will be listed in the Bulletin and the Monthly Newsletter. The month of January is Darren Gietzen. The month of February will be Roger Kivela.
We have a Trustee of the Month who is the person to call if there are needs in the church building or the parsonage. The month of January is Tim Erickson.
We have a few members who no longer drive but would love to come to church on Sunday Morning or Wednesday evening. If you would be willing to give a ride please contact the church office or Pastor Tim at 263-3955.
Those of you who use social media, please check out our Facebook page for updated information and postings. Search Grace Lutheran Church-Hibbing MN, or use @GLC55746.
The Annual Report will be put together during the first few weeks of January. We are asking all committees and organizations of Grace to submit a report of their activities for the past year. Please make note of this!! You may leave articles marked "Annual Report" in the office by January 11th, thanks.
Come on down to Grace Lutheran on Wednesday, January 3rd we will take down Christmas decorations and cleanup the church beginning at 12:00 pm, noon. All hands are needed!!
The Memorial Committee gratefully acknowledges gifts in memory of:
12-3 Memorial given by Don & Helen Jacklen designated to the Mortgage Fund in memory of Marie Mayer.
Our 100th Anniversary Celebration will be held on Saturday, June 30th and Sunday July 1st, 2018. Save the dates have been sent out, so if you have not received one please contact the office. We will be creating a cookbook, please send your favorite recipes! Mail or email to the church office.
Cookbooks will be a padded 3-ring binder style cookbook comprised of member’s, family, and friend’s favorite recipes, past and present. A durable metal binding that easily snaps open to allow more pages to be added; divided by category w/tab dividers for ease of use. Cookbooks will also include pages of church history and images for your enjoyment and as a keepsake commemorating the 100th Celebration. The finished binder size is 7.0 inches wide and 9.25 inches tall, with a 1.5-inch spine. The cookbooks will be $15, window clings $5. and T-shirts for $10-14. depending on your size.
There will also be T-shirts and window clings for sale. More details will follow as we near the event. Please see our website www.gracehibbing.com for order form.
The Ladies Guild held their annual Christmas Luncheon at Grandma’s in the Park on December 7th. Ladies were treated with beautiful Christmas Carols by the High School “Northern Lights” Choir. It was a great turn out, thank you to all that attended, brought treats and gifts. There were lots of laughs with great company.
We are asking for volunteers to serve the meal the last Tuesday of the month at the Salvation Army Soup Kitchen. We need 2-4 people to serve and clean-up. Park in their parking lot and go through the double doors and you should find the kitchen. Please find a sign-up sheet on the table in the entryway. The month of January we have the 30th.
Pastor Tim has forms to help with funeral planning, if you are interested. It will help you with all the things that need to be decided in planning a funeral.
Installation of Church Officers (Church Council & Ladies Guild, etc.) will be during the Sunday morning worship service on January14th.
12-17-17 Baptism: Stevee Kristina Jurek
01-02-18 Transfer In: Paul Vraa
SUNDAY MORNING WORSHIP – God’s great gift of blessing people with His Word and the sacred gifts of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. What great “word” does Jesus have for you? Come and join us at the foot of the cross where our Lord speaks His word of forgiveness and where he gives us direction and hope for life and eternity. Sunday morning at 9:00 am here at Grace Lutheran Church.
CHILDREN'S SUNDAY SCHOOL: Sundays at 10:30 am. Invite a friend! If you are interested in volunteering to teach or be a teacher’s helper, please see our schedule in the bulletin on Sundays or on table in entryway. The sign-up calendar is hanging in the office workroom.
RELIGIOUS RELEASE TIME REGISTRATION:
1st-6th grade children are released at 12:30 every other Wednesday, and meet for an hour for devotions, Christian songs, growth in Christian values and knowledge (often we use a captivating video), along with a Christian activity page or craft and a snack. Your kids will love Release Time, pick up a registration form in the office!
CONFIRMATION CLASSES FOR YOUTH: is at 10:30 am on Sundays. What a great time to grow in God's Word and in relation to His people. Contact the church office at 263-3955 if you have any questions.
The LCMS National Youth Gathering will be in Minneapolis, MN, July 11-15, 2019. Hopefully there will be some youth interested in attending.
Please contact Pastor Tim when hospitalized or in an emergency 24/7 either at the Office-263-3955 or his cell phone 1-218-440-1029.
FYI If you are purchasing taxable items for the church (anything to do with the church), we do not pay sales tax. Please pick up a State Sales Tax form from the office to give to the vendor you are buying from.
"Who is that sitting over there?" Have you ever wondered that in church? The next time you find yourself wondering, act on it! Make it a point to walk over after church and introduce yourself. God is blessing us with a tremendous opportunity to make disciples. There is somebody in church every Sunday who you have not met yet. Let's be visitor conscious.
The Foster Grandparent Program of NE MN is recruiting new volunteers in our area. They are looking for men and women ages 55 and older who are available to volunteer 15-40 hours a week in schools & child care centers working with children with special and exceptional needs. Volunteers help tutor students in reading & math, healp learn basic skills, and form meaningful and lasting relationships. In exchange for the volunteer service, the volunteers receive a tax-free, non-reportable stipend, mileage reimbursement, monthly training and recognition. It is easy to apply! If interested please call 715-394-5384 or 1-888-338-6492
Options for Women, a pregnancy resource center, is currently in need of volunteers to serve at our centers in Virginia and Hibbing. We are looking for individuals who have a heart for the families struggling in our community and are looking for a hands on way to help them. Volunteers are needed for three hour shifts weekly, bi-weekly, or even monthly. One shift can mean being open for the clients who need us most.
If you aren’t able to serve as a volunteer, you can still make a difference in the lives of families in need on the
Iron Range. Our centers are always in need of donations such as diapers, wipes, used or new baby furniture, and of course monetary donations are always appreciated. Prayers are asked on behalf of the center, the volunteers, and the clients.
For more information on donations or to volunteer please call 262-5768 or visit www.hibbinglifecare.org
A magazine you know and trust, “The Lutheran Witness”, connects you to the church. If you would like to receive a subscription to the Lutheran Witness this coming year, please fill out the half sheet form that is on the table in entryway and attach your check for $22.01. You may bring it into the office, mail it to the church at 4010 W. 9th Ave. or put in the offering plate. We need to have your subscription into the office no later than January 26th.
Grace Connections Newsletter is something new that will be added to the monthly newsletter here at Grace, and readily available to members, friends and families of Children of Grace. Lois Warner is looking for writers willing to share in this newsletter to help build strong faith foundations and family connections. For more information in reference to Grace Connections Newsletter, or if you are interested in writing, please contact Lois.
We are asking all members to help keep our church clean. We rely on volunteers to help with cleaning of the church. A list of those who had volunteered to clean in 2017 and the new sign up sheet for 2018 is on the front table. Some of the areas are large, please consider helping out by talking to the person who is signed up for that area. More hands make the job easier.
We ask all those who volunteer to keep the area you have volunteered for clean.
If you have any questions about volunteering to help keep our church clean, please call the church office at 263-3955.
Thank you all for volunteering to clean-up!! When supplies are low, notify church office by leaving a note or calling at 263-3955. Thank you to all!
You Are Invited
Speaker: Breanna Holland
Special Music By: Ev-Faust Newby, Jeanne Olson, Nan Rupp, Ginny Dykhius.
Mesabi Women’s Connection
January 4th, 2018
Time: 6:00 pm
Dinner, Coffee & Dessert: $8.00 donation
Held at: Grace Lutheran Church,
4010 9th Ave. W., Hibbing, MN.
Reservations Needed: Diane,
Elaine, or Bev
Just a reminder that the library is open every Sunday before church. The librarians will try to be available to open whenever you would like! If you are interested in checking out any books please let us know!
Members Present: John Matetich, Dave Boettcher, Tim Erickson,
Roger Kivela, Deb Jarvi, and Chris Matetich. Also present were Diane Meyer,
Pastor Tim, and Wanda Boettcher. There was no Quorum. Pastor Tim opened with
Secretary's Report: The minutes of November 21st, 2017, were read by Chris Matetich.
Treasurer's Report: Deb Jarvi presented a written report.
Elder’s Report: Report by Roger Kivela. There are a few projects in the works for the new year. The Sunday School Christmas Program was very well done and enjoyed by many. With Christmas Eve on Sunday, services will be held at 9:00 am and 4:00 pm. We are very happy to have Nick Niemi joining us as an elder. There has been some leaking in the gym and some suggestions were made to alleviate the problem.
Trustee’s Report: Report by Dave Boettcher. Advent services start February 14 and helpers are in place for the fish fry for the six Fridays (February 16th – March 23rd).
Children of Grace: Report by Diane Meyer. Additional staff is needed as two teachers will be leaving. We have had to dispose of five of our big red cars that are kept in the gym due to older children riding on top of them. Roger Kivela will talk to Sunday School children and gym supervisors. A suggestion was made to find a spot for the chairs that are in the gym closet so that when new cars are purchased, they can be put there.
Youth Report: Report by Tim Erickson.There will be three youth in Bible Bowl. Practice will start the first Sunday in January. The study will be on the Book of Genesis. Still waiting to hear if there will be youth joining from Chisholm.
Old Business: Dave Boettcher to sign the Concordia Plan Service Report as he had done last year.
New Business: Gary Kuusisto gave up his days working in the office and Sarah Clark will be taking over his hours.
Meeting was closed with the Lord’s Prayer.
Respectfully submitted by Chris Matetich.
Grace Connections Newsletter Volume I: January 1, 2018
“Reading the Bible”
I read an article a long time ago (too long ago to remember the source) giving suggestions on reading and understanding the Bible. The author taught how to stay engaged when reading the Bible by asking questions in your mind like “what are you smelling? What are you hearing? Can you feel the sun or the rain?” These are a few other questions that I ask myself to help me gain understanding when I read the Bible. Think of what you are reading like a scene in a play you are watching:
1. What’s the storyline?
2. In one paragraph, how would I explain the circumstances to someone else?
3. Who are the characters? What are their names?
4. What might be some of the emotions the characters are feeling or what might they be thinking?
5. Is there a conflict or a difference of opinion?
6. What political differences might there be? What are the societal times like? What is the cultural setting?
The Bible is God’s love story for His creation. God created the heavens and the earth, and then He created man (Adam) and (Eve). God is an amazing God! But sometimes, it’s hard to get our heads around who He is and how He thinks of us. Let’s see how the people of the Bible described God in Genesis and in Psalms, and let’s see how these descriptive words in just three passages from the Bible give us a description of God.
1. Elohim means “the strong Creator God” (Gen. 1);
2. Jehovah means “the relational God” (Genesis 2);
3. Jehovah- Raah means “the Lord my Shepherd” (Ps. 23).
Let’s put it together: (1) God is strong and He has the power to create. Genesis tells us He created by saying, “let there be…” and “it was so.” That tells me that God is not like us, but mighty and all-powerful. Genesis also says, “in the beginning, there was the Word and the Word was God” telling us He is also timeless. Our lives are controlled by time, and God is timeless.
(2) He is a relational God. We can’t have a relationship without communication, and we can’t have a relationship without giving our time to maintain it. The Bible tells us how God would seek out Adam and Eve in the cool of the evening because He wanted to spend time with them. God is never-changing, and the fact that He wants to spend time with us hasn’t changed. He wants us to know Him, and that requires that we take the time to know Him through His Word and in prayer.
God is not a controlling God. To control another is not love, but the opposite. God has the power to create and He most certainly could control, but He doesn’t. God wants us to choose whether or not to spend time learning who He is and talking to Him. He wants us to learn to trust Him.
God is holy and God is just. If He wasn’t, how could we trust Him? If we don’t know Him, how can we trust Him? God never changes the rules on us. His love is the same and always will be.
(3) We see Jesus foretold in the next description from Psalms. God is our “Shepherd.” Jesus is referred to as the “Good Shepherd who laid down His life down to save His sheep.” Well, we’re the sheep and He’s the Good Shepherd. Jesus was there in the beginning; He is described in the Old Testament and Jesus is God -- the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. We see Jesus; we see God. We believe in Jesus; we know God’s love.
1. Don’t be intimidated by the Bible because you don’t understand it. Just take a little at a time.
2. God wants us to talk with Him. Prayer is communication with God. Don’t wait for that perfect quiet moment to pray because it won’t happen. I like to “pray on the go?” That means I use those brief moments like driving in the car or waiting for the dog to do her thing!
3. I have a prayer partner that I so appreciate. Find a prayer partner and you will be blessed.
4. Get into a Bible study or start one. Studying with others is how we learn and grow!