Dear Congregational Family,

1. XYZ: It was held on Friday with record attendance! Thank you to Jody Garlick for an excellent presentation (and snacks!), and to Peggy Cox for a very delicious meal! Thank you, Melissa for organizing this. Next month will feature singing with Kurt Radke on Friday, February 24th. Don’t miss this wonderful time of fellowship. Think of someone to invite to come with you as well!

Alan Hinkelman providing a blessing prior to the XYZ lunch.

2. Sunday Fellowship Breakfast: This Sunday, during the Sunday School time, we will not be having classes. Instead, we will be having a congregational family breakfast in the Fellowship Hall. Please use this opportunity to eat with some people who might be new to you and get to know them! Thank you, Fellowship Committee, for organizing this! This is also Communion Sunday, so we will be gathering non-perishable food items for the community food pantries as well. As you come and are fed, please consider bringing an item to help feed others!

3. Snow: Today we received a beautiful white blanket of snow, which reminds me of God’s Gospel invitation from Isaiah 1:18 – “’Come now, let us reason together,’ says the Lord, ‘though your sins are as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as white as wool.’” The reference to snow is easy for us to understand as we see it covering the earth with its pristine beauty. The reference to wool is not as readily apparent to us today, as few of us have sheep in our back yards. But it is a beautiful example of God’s grace! When I raised sheep, it was around this time of year that I would have their wool sheared. Yes, I know it was cold, but it was to cause the mothers to find a warm place to have their lambs in February. Sheep are sheared only once each year. Every filthy thing that they walked through, brushed up against, laid on, etc., during the past year had become imbedded in their thick wool fleece and clung to them like a filthy coat, deeply stained with sin. When they were sheared of that dirty wool, they would be unstained, pure, and beautiful again. God delights to do that for us as well. Let His grace fall from heaven like snow, and let Him remove our sins and make us clean and clothe us in His garments, “bright and clean.”

4. Sermon: Title: “God’s Salt and Light”
Text: Matthew 5:13-20

God bless you as we continue,
“Growing Together in our Faith as the Family of God.”

Pastor Carlson