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Pastor Norman 8/2019

From Your Pastor’s Heart
Where did the summer go? It is hard to believe how quickly time passes. We are approaching a new church year when we will be adopting a new church budget and electing new officers, teachers, committees and teams. Please be in prayer for our finance committee and nominating committee as they finish their work. I ask you to prayerfully seek God’s will for the place He desires for you to serve. We are called to serve Christ in and through His church.
 
Construction on our new worship center is steadily moving forward. We are thankful to “Carpenters For Christ” for their labor of love and those in our church and others who are working daily to complete the project. More needs to be done, but the finish line is in sight.
 
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have our worship center totally paid for before we move in? Do you believe it could happen? Humanly speaking that seems unlikely, but we worship and serve a God “who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that works in us” (Ephesians 3:20). This means nothing is impossible for God to do, but He will empower us in accomplishing what is humanly impossible! Will you be a partner with God in accomplishing the impossible?
 
Many of you are giving faithfully to our GROW campaign. Thank you! Will you pray about giving more? Maybe you haven’t given up to now. Will you begin giving? This building is not an end in itself. It is a means to an end! It has never been about a building. The building is a tool to help us fulfill our vision of reaching and discipling those in our growing community. It is a God-sized vision that is worthy of all our toil, prayers, service, and sacrifice.
 
I am blessed to be your pastor! Pastor Norman

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Pastor Norman 7/2019

From Your Pastor’s Heart
Over ninety of you posted on the cross in the worship center the name of the person you are lifting up in prayer, building a relationship with, and looking for an opportunity to share your story and the Gospel. Can you imagine what God will do if we start FISHING for our one? God will do great things because Our Lord is still “seeking and saving the lost!” I am asking you to do two things for the month of July. First, briefly share during our worship service a testimony of a conversation you are having with “your one.” It might be a Gospel conversation or a way you are building a relationship.
 
Second, on Sunday, July 28th, there will be a “Bring Your One Sunday.” We are asking you to invite “your one” to church to hear the life-changing message of the Gospel.
 
William Carey, the great missionary, is quoted as saying, “Expect Great Things From God.” Let’s do the same. If we do, He will do great things!
 
Pastor Norman

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Pastor Norman 6/2019

From Your Pastor’s Heart We are about to begin a new step in the process of the building of ournew worship center. About sixty men from Carpenters for Christ will be withus from June 5th through the 14th. They will be doing the work of framing theinterior of our building. They will be living on our church campus during this time. We appreciate these Christian men leaving their families and places of employment to serve us. We also have an opportunity to serve them. Our church will be providing three meals a day, snacks, and drinks during the day for these workers. There are several things you can do to help:  (1) Pray for their safety as the work and for their families at home. (2) As you have opportunity, thank them for their service. (3) If you haven’t already done so, volunteer to help by signing up on the big board in the foyer of the CLC. (4) You may give financially to help in the cost of the food and supplies.
 
God is doing His part. The Carpenters will do their part. Let’s do our part!
 
Serving Him together,
Pastor Norman

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Pastor Kent 8/2019

Worship Matters
The University of Northern Iowa once offered a general art course that included a most unusual exercise. The teacher brought to class a shopping bag filled with lemons and gave a lemon to each class member. The assignment was for the student to keep his lemon with him day and night–smelling, handling, examining it. Next class period, without warning, students were told to put their lemons back in the bag. Then each was asked to find his lemon. Surprisingly, most did so without difficulty. (Ministry, September, 1984.)
 
This month I want to begin looking at the differences between praise and worship. The above gives a great illustration of one of the differences we will begin with. One of the biggest differences between praise and worship is intimacy. You can praise God from a distance. Even in scripture it tells us that the rocks, trees, mountains, stars, and all creation praise Him (Psalm 148). Yet all of these things do not have a relationship with Him. Even Hank Williams was not a religious man, and yet he wrote the popular gospel song I Saw the Light. Worship involves intimacy. It is communing with the heart of God. It is falling deeper and deeper in love with the God who saved us. Worship involves the vertical more than the horizontal. It brings us closer and closer to our Heavenly Father.
 
When you come into a time of worship, do you have a million other things on your mind? Or do you come with an anticipation of knowing God deeper and pouring out your love upon Him for all He has done for you? You can come and praise and miss out on the worship. My prayer is that you desire a deeper and stronger intimacy in your relationship with the Lord!
 
Yours In Worship, Pastor Kent Wilson

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Pastor Kent 7/2019

Worship Matters July 2019
Have you ever been so captivated by something that it just took your breath away? I can remember when my oldest son Chandler was born. He was laying under the warmer after the doctor and nurses were done examining him. He was shaking and whimpering. Missy said to me, “Go over and sing to him his song.” When Missy was pregnant I would sing to him Because He Lives while laying on her stomach. I went over to him and began to sing. I was entering into my first moment of worship with my son. He quit whimpering and he turned and looked at me and just focused on my singing. In that moment I stopped singing because I was so overwhelmed with this tiny blessing God have given to me. Even His presence was so overwhelming to me that I could not speak or sing!
 
In II Chronicles 5:12-14 it tells of the story of the first worship in the Temple after Solomon had completed it. In these verse the musicians and singers began to worship and a cloud engulfed the entire Temple as the presence of God filled the place. It tells of how they could not continue to minister because of the cloud (presence of God). Can you imagine what that must have been like? They were so engulfed by the presence of the Lord that they could not see anyone or anything around them. All they could see was God’s Holy presence. This should be our goal each time we worship. To come into His presence and get so lost in him that we see nothing or no one around us. In that moment we are completely taken up with God! Bob Sorge, in his book Exploring Worship says, “This is the supreme goal of worship: to see only the Lord. There is no higher fulfillment for us, nor will there ever be.”
 
I believe for this to happen we must come with the right attitude and mindset. If we come with our hearts and minds focused on the issues of life and other things, we will miss out on seeing God in all of His glory! How you come to worship will determine how your worship experience will go. I have said this many times: If you come expecting nothing, then that is what you are going to get. If you come expecting God to move and work in your life, then that is exactly what you are going to get!
Yours In Worship, Pastor Kent Wilson

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Pastor Kent 6/2019

Worship Matters
Once A.W. Tozer asked, “What is worship? Worship is to feel in your heart and express in some appropriate manner a humbling but delightful sense of admiring awe and astonished wonder and overpowering love in the presence of that most ancient Mystery, that Majesty which philosophers call the First Cause, but which we call Our Father Which Are in Heaven.”
 
Worship is something that brings us into a deeper intimacy with God. In worship we can get lost in the awe and wonder of who God is. Even if others are around us. Worship tends to take us deeper than praise. Praise, of course, is the channel which brings us into the sphere of worship. They often look just like each other. One of the biggest problems why people do not worship is because they have a pride problem. Ever heard these statements: “I just can’t worship to this new music!” Or, “I just can’t worship to that old music!” Here the problem is not the music, it’s the heart of the individual. Pride says, “I want my way. That’s the only way.” Worship is not based upon what we sing; it is based upon whom were singing to. I understand we all have different tastes in music, but we can’t let that keep us from worshipping our creator! A proud man cannot worship a Holy God. In Isaiah 6:3 the Seraphim flying around the throne are crying out “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory.” They each have six wings and with two they cover their face from the brilliant glory of God. With two more they cover their feet because they know they are on holy ground. With the other two they fly around the throne to encircle God with constant praise and adoration.
 
I close with another quote from A.W. Tozer. He said, “It is in the presence of the Holy Spirit that I begin to recognize what a sinful man that I really am. The apostle Paul said, “Woe is me!” Isaiah cried, “Woe is me!” when he came into the presence of God. They were experiencing the mysterious wonder of that One who is incomprehensible.”
 
Yours In Worship,
Pastor Kent Wilson

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