First Evangelical Lutheran Church
Prayer of the Day
Heavenly Father, You care for all people regardless of their wealth or heritage, and You have made us heirs of Your salvation. Strengthen us, that we care for the poor, weak, and lonely, and that all our neighbors may know Your gracious love; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Let God use your troubles to rekindle your spiritual life. Here is a simple prayer if you have not yet given your heart to Jesus and invited him into your life:
Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God, that you died on the cross to rescue me from sin and death and to restore me to the Father. I choose now to turn from my sins, my self-centeredness, and every part of my life that does not please you. I choose you. I give myself to you. I receive your forgiveness and ask you to take your rightful place in my life as my Savior and Lord. Come reign in my heart, fill me with your love and your life, and help me to become a person who is truly loving—a person like you. Restore me, Jesus. Live in me. Love through me. Thank you, God. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
Everybody needs a place along his journey where he can sense the presence of God and worship Him; where he can receive spiritual strength and guidance for the week ahead; where he can belong to a caring group of people who encourage him along the way.
We at this church have learned to know Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as the Savior of the world, who comes to us in His Word, in Baptism, and in His Holy Spirit to guide us through this life.
We invite you to experience the love of God along with us by participating in our weekly celebration of His goodness.
A Prayer for the Nation
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” (Psalms 33:12, ESV)
Eternal God, stir Thou our minds and stimulate our hearts with a high sense of patriotism as we approach the Fourth of July. May all that this day symbolizes renew our faith in freedom, our devotion to democracy, and redouble our efforts to keep a government of the people, by the people, and for the people truly alive in our world.
Grant that we may highly resolve on this great day to dedicate ourselves anew to the task of ushering in an era when good will shall live in the hearts of a free people, justice shall be the light to guide their feet, and peace shall be the goal of humankind: to the glory of Thy holy name and the good of our Nation and of all mankind. Amen.
(Congressional Prayer offered by Chaplain, Reverend Edward G. Latch on Wednesday, July 3, 1974.)
AS WE GATHER...
We hear John the Baptist coming to prepare the way for the Lord, whose earthly birth we are preparing to celebrate and whose coming again on the Last Day is the promise of resurrection and eternal life for all who believe. Between our coming to faith and His coming again, we are called to lives of faith that continue to rejoice, to pray, and to give thanks in every circumstance. We can do that because we have come to the light of our salvation and hope of eternal life. Now certainly it’s easier to rejoice, pray, and give thanks when things are going well. It’s another thing when we suffer illness or persecution, the reverses, challenges, and disappointments of life. Nevertheless, the Spirit of Christ seeks to enable us to do just that—to rejoice always, to pray always, and to give thanks to God always in all circumstances. This is holy living, constantly keeping the eyes of faith on the sure and certain Word and promises of God for His people, the God who blesses, keeps, comforts, and strengthens us every day. We rejoice with the psalmist, saying, “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).
Scripture Lessons for the Third Sunday in Advent
OLD TESTAMENT READING Isaiah 61:1–4, 8–11 (The year of the Lord’s favor)
PSALM Psalm 126
EPISTLE 1 Thessalonians 5:16–24 (Rejoice always)
HOLY GOSPEL John 1:6–8, 19–28 (The testimony of John the Baptist)
The Abell Family: Elaine Adams: Barbara Allen: Chery Allen: Alexa & Baby Rowan: Al Bafford: Art Barrios & family: Mr. & Mrs. George Braun: Jose Calderon: Stephanie Cano: Andres Carlos: Barbara Carlos: Helen Christensen: Wanda Davis: Corey Day: the Day Family: Donna Duncan: Renee Duncan: Gary Edward: Jim Espinoza: Tammy Espinoza: Felix: Wendy Fishbeck: John Forgett: Richard Forgett: Grace Grimes: Mando, Nikki & Nicole Guzman: Frank & Leila Hathaway: Johnny Hathaway: Olga Herrera: Anita Hopkins: Anna Hopkins: Nancy Kennon: Bill M: Daniel M: Bailey, Brenden, Kadence, and Kristen Martens: Leo Maier: Barry Martin: Roberta Masterson: Mary at Lutheran High: Breanna Merrill: Paula Moreno: Clark Mosley: Debbie Neumann: Florence Neumann: Gerry Neumann: Nathanael Neumann: Tim Neumann: Allan Nielsen: Kim Paracchini: Jeff Pearson: Karen Pearson: Doreen Poise: the Poise Family: Billy Power: Ruth Provenzano: Bernice Ramos: Anaya Raygoza: Frances Remus-Williams: Lillian Rey: Mary Lou Riley: Socorro: Kristina Serna: Marc, Jonelle & Emma Silvia: Courtney Sullivan: Dan & Mercy Sullivan: John & Carol Tripp: Katy & Junior Valdovino: Henry Velasco: Tess Velasco: Jack & Daisy Vigil: All of our Schools and Universities
Promises of God - My Eternal Security
“I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:28
Promises of God: An Answer to Prayer
“This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him.” 1 John 5:14-15
Promises of God - The Father's Love
“I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39
The Promises of God: The Lord's Help
Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
THE PROMISES OF GOD
Daily dwell on God’s promises to you. Hide them in your heart and always remember, “not one word has failed of all His good promise.” 1 Kings 8:56
“The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Deuteronomy 31:8
“My God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
The Promises of God: The Forgiveness of Sin
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9