Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16
Happy New Year! We give thanks to God that he has protected and blessed His church for another year, and we pray that he will make his presence known again in 2018.
This time of year, we are all making New Year resolutions. We set goals, we promise to break bad habits, and we find ways to grow as a person. I know there are all sorts of jokes that New Year resolutions last a day or two at best. Maybe this year your New Year resolution is to follow your New Year resolutions better this year!
I would like to encourage us, as a congregation, to set a New Year resolution. How can we as a body of Christ grow in our faith and in practicing our faith? If you have your own spiritual resolutions, I pray God’s strength as your grow individually, but I also would like to set one that we can all work on as a family here at Zion.
So here we go! Zion Lutheran Church New Year Resolution 2018: To bring your Bible to church each Sunday, and open it during the readings of the church. This has so many benefits, and there is nothing more important to your faith-life than getting to know God’s Word better. Basic benefits include learning where the different books of the Bible are located, and marking/highlighting the chapter that you read in your own bible. Additional benefits include looking at what is going on before and after our particular reading, being encourage to read the readings ahead of time, and getting in a good habit of opening your Bible. Sarcastic benefit, you can ensure you own Bible doesn’t collect dust throughout the year! You can have one family Bible that you look at during worship, or have one for each member of the household. This is something you can shape for yourself, and something we can all do together as a church.
Zion Lutheran Church is full of individuals who are at different stages of their faith, and that is great. God strengthens our faith at different times and in different ways. So below are different “levels” of commitment you can give to this resolution. Pick one that you believe is a step up from the past year, but isn’t too big to make it like the rest of your resolutions that only last a week.
Platinum Level: Read all 3 readings for the upcoming Sunday during the week, and mark your Bible so you are ready to open when the readings are read.
Gold Level: Read the 1 reading that is highlighted in the bulletin for the upcoming Sunday during the week, and mark your Bible for all 3 readings so you are ready when the readings are read. The highlighted reading will be the one that Pastor Grewe plans to preach from that week.
Silver Level: Mark your Bible for all 3 readings so you are ready to open your Bible when the readings are read. Bronze Level: When you come to church, get the Bible from the Pew rack out and mark the page numbers for the 3 readings. The page numbers will be printed in the bulletin’s order of worship.
Starting this Sunday, we will print the upcoming readings in the bulletin so you know what to prepare for during the week. Take the challenge! Make this a resolution for 2018. Grow with other members of the church, and encourage one another. May God bless your new year! May you grow closer to God and His Word! May we grow closer as a congregation!
Pastor Nathan Grewe