A young woman was taking an afternoon nap. After she woke up, she told her husband, “I just dreamed that you gave me a pearl necklace for Valentine’s Day. “What do you think it means?” “You’ll know tonight,” he said. That evening, the man came home with a small package and gave it to his wife. Delighted, she opened it, only to find a book entitled  “The Meaning of Dreams.”

 Happy Valentine’s Day  

Upcoming events in February and beyond:

Sunday, Feb. 4thCelebrating communion fitting beautifully with our series “A child of God.”  God will unleash the 10 plagues on Egypt because Pharaoh would not let the Israelites go (to the Promised Land). The last plague is the first glimpse of the last supper and Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.   

Sunday Feb. 11thAfter the Israelites are freed from Egypt (400 yrs. of slavery) by God through Moses and walk through the Red Sea they come to Mt. Siani to receive the 10 commandments. The basis for living in community with God, others, and self, rooted in love, still relevant today.  

After church Kids’ activity making valentine cards, crafts, etc… (Kelly & Ally leading) Some of the Valentine cards will be for folks at Alden care facility where Vince B. is a resident. As a community service project, the kids can join us (Contemporary Team) on a Sunday in March at Alden (TBA), to pass out the cards to the residents.

Ash Wednesday Feb. 14th – Looking for your input to hold the service on Wed. night at 7 or receiving the ashes as part of the Sunday Feb 18th service. This is what we did last year because of weather concerns.

Sunday Feb. 18th – After church we’ll discuss with the youth the sacraments: Communion & Baptism. All are welcome kids, parents, adults to come and ask questions.

Wednesday Feb. 21st – Lenten Bible Study every Wed. Feb. 21st – March 20th

Lenten Bible Study soup at 6 pm in fellowship hall, 6:30 in the sanctuary PowerPoint Presentation The Book of Psalms.   

Sunday March 24th – Palm Sunday

Friday March 29th – Good Friday 7 pm

Sunday March 31st – Easter  

Blessings, Pastor Michael


  • Transfiguration of Our Lord, February 11, 2024
  • Ash Wednesday, February 14, 2024
  • Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2024
  • Presidents Day, February 19, 2024
  • Leap Day, February 29, 2024


Cross of Ashes — On Ash Wednesday, as Lent begins, worshipers’ foreheads are often marked with ashes in the sign of the cross. The ashes traditionally come from burning palm branches from the previous Palm Sunday. In the Old Testament, ashes were a sign of mourning and repentance. Today, some worshipers wipe off the ashes before leaving church, to symbolize being cleansed from sin by Jesus’ death; others wear the ashes the rest of the day, carrying the cross of Christ into the world. Reciting Genesis 3:19 often accompanies the placement of ashes: “You are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

Ground Rules for Love

In Let Me Be a Woman, missionary Elisabeth Elliot writes about the “ground rules” for “how this thing called love really works — in a marriage, in the world.” Her list reflects many of the principles found in 1 Corinthians 13, the Bible’s love chapter.  This love of which I speak is slow to lose patience. It looks for a way of being constructive.

Love is not possessive.

Love is not anxious to impress, nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own ideas.

Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage.

Love is not touchy.

Love does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad … when truth prevails.

Love knows no limits to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that stands when all else has fallen.

God-shaped Hole

Have you ever neared the completion of a jigsaw puzzle, only to discover that a piece or two is missing? That’s an apt visual for what it’s like to live without God. Blaise Pascal, a 17th century philosopher, observed: “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of each man which cannot be satisfied by any created thing but only by God the Creator, made known through Jesus Christ.”  Centuries earlier, St. Augustine proclaimed “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in thee.” And in the Old Testament, the writer of Ecclesiastes expounded on the meaninglessness of earthly striving and material pursuits. Only God’s Spirit can fill our emptiness and satisfy our eternal longings.  “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full,” says Jesus in John 10:10 (NIV). He alone provides the solution for emptiness. What comfort to be filled with — and to find our fulfillment in — our Savior!

Spring Training for Christians

The word Lent comes from Middle English and German words for springtime. In light of the start of baseball season, some people call the pre-Easter season “spring training for Christians.” This fresh perspective moves away from the flawed understanding that Lent must be somber, or that giving something up for Lent is punishment for sin or a way to earn God’s favor.

As people of faith, we should never take a season off. But every so often — at least once a year! — we do well to examine where we need to get back in shape spiritually. Perhaps we will indeed opt to give something up: that swearing habit, sleeping in on Sundays, or the cost of a weekly treat so we can donate the money instead. Or maybe we’ll take on something new for Lent: a Bible study, prayer routine or service project.

Hebrews describes spiritual discipline as challenging in the moment but yielding righteousness later. The writer urges us, “Lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees … so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed” (12:11-13, ESV). May the spring training of Lent strengthen and heal us all.

“Where there is love there is life.”  Mahatma Gandhi

February Mission of the Month:  Family Health Partnership