Advance the Reign of God Through HOly Conversation

Holy Conversation is St. Matthew's guide for prayer and meditation.                               This Week's Holy Conversation


"I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,

and in his word I hope..." (Psalm 130:5, ESV)


The Christian life is one of holy conversation between God and man. As one author put it, "Our Lord speaks and we listen. His Word bestows what it says. Faith that is born from what is heard acknowledges the gifts received with eager thankfulness and praise....Saying back to him what he has said to us, we repeat what is most true and sure" (Introduction, Lutheran Worship).


All "advance" opportunities at St. Matthew flow out of God's holy conversation with His people. The guide that is offered every Sunday at St. Matthew and here electronically encourages and fosters such conversation. It includes:


*Daily Readings from the Psalms

*Commentary for the Week (thoughtful words regarding the Christian faith)

*Daily Readings from Holy Scripture

*Verse of the Week (learn by heart a Scripture passage each week)

*The Small Catechism (a section devoted to the teachings of the faith)

*In Our Prayers at St. Matthew (specific prayer petitions)

*Collect for the Week (a prayer that can be used in daily devotions)

*Hymn of the Week (a focus on the words and message of one hymn stanza)


Blessings to you as the Lord engages you in holy conversation.

Advance the Reign of God through God's City

“For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come” (Hebrews 13:14, ESV).

                                                                  

What do the children of our community need more than anything? A trip to God’s City! 


Every Sunday (September--May), the young people of Spring Lake (Preschool-4th Grade) will have the opportunity to go on a city stroll through the St. Matthew property. There, they will encounter the Lord and the people of His city as the Word of God comes to life. 


This stroll takes place between 10:45am—11:45am on Sundays at St. Matthew. All of the people of the community are encouraged to participate in God’s City. Perhaps you can simply join us at the Welcome Center at 10:45am and hear about that day’s trip to God’s City. Or maybe you can volunteer to serve as one of the guides for the children as they amble through St. Matthew’s property. You can also sign up to read God’s Story to the children on one particular Sunday. Another way you can help is by facilitating City Circle, the place where the children apply the day’s Bible story. Lastly, all of us can invite children to St. Matthew every Sunday for God’s City! 


Scriptures. Salvation. Strength. Singing. Sharing. It is all included on a stroll through God’s City! 


God’s City Stroll Itinerary

10:45am—Welcome Center with Pastor Goers

11:05am—God’s Story

11:25am—City Circle

11:45am—Saint Sending

Advance the Reign of God through In Footsteps

"Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God." (Mark 10:14b, ESV)


The children of St. Matthew Footsteps Preschool gather together to hear the stories of God's kingdom. Beginning in the Old Testament and moving through the New Testament, the 3 and 4 year olds walk in the footsteps of ones such as Abraham, Jacob, Hannah, Mary, Paul, and John. The Lord Jesus Christ is proclaimed as the Savior of all.  


In Footsteps meets on Mondays and Thursdays (September through May) at 9:30am.


For more information on In Footsteps, please contact Holly DeJohn, Child Care Director, or Pastor Michael Goers

Advance the Reign of God Through Scripture Search

During a conversation with some religious leaders of his day, Jesus of Nazareth told the dissenters, "You are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God" (Matthew 22:29b, ESV).


A goal of Scripture Search is that young people would be formed to know the Scriptures and the power of God. To receive such knowledge, Scripture Search, designed for 5th-6th grade students, includes....


*64 Prominent Narratives from Both the Old and New Testaments                                                                                          

(Over a two year period, Scripture Search participants will become familiar with key biblical accounts by engaging in guided reading sessions. A seminary trained pastor will lead the young people through the essential readings of Holy Scripture. The informal setting of the reading sessions allows for discussion and investigation into the knowledge of God. Parents and other adult mentors are encouraged to participate as SS Guests.)


*52 "Take to Heart" Scripture Passages

(In each session, participants have the opportunity to recite a specific passage from Holy Scripture by memory.)


*12 Components of a Framework for Studying the Scriptures

(Scripture Search is designed around The Framework, a structure consisting of twelve core elements of the Christian faith. As participants learn The Framework, they will be able to hear individual sections of Scripture and consider how they fit in the overall narrative of God’s Word. They also will see how The Framework invites people to become a part of God’s overarching story.) 


Scripture Search seeks to bring to the forefront a knowledge of the Scriptures and of God.


Scripture Search sessions run on Sundays September through May, from 3:30pm--4:30pm at St. Matthew.


For more information on Scripture Search, please contact Pastor Michael Goers.

Advance the Reign of God through United

"For if we have been united with [Christ] in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his." (Romans 6:5, ESV)


Through God's working, people of all ages are united to Christ in the water and Word of Holy Baptism. This union lasts for eternity. But this union is not just between the Lord and separate individuals. Christ connects people to each other as they hear His words, receive the waters of Holy Baptism, and participate in His Supper.


United, designed for 7th and 8th grade students, prepares people for a lifetime of fellowship with Christ and other Christians. Upon completion, United also allows one to engage in the Rite of Confirmation and participate in the Lord's Supper. United includes...


*64 Sessions Over a Two Year Period

(Led by a seminary trained pastor, United's topics are presented on Sunday afternoons from 4:30pm--5:30pm, September through May. Parents and other adult mentors are encouraged to participate as U Visitors.)


*4 Overnight Retreats with Other Christian Youth

(Area pastors, youth, and chaperones meet together two times a year for fellowship, intensive instruction, and conversation.)


*6 Chief Parts of the Christian Faith

(Young people will see God's activity in the world and the Church by studying One Design, One God, One Prayer, One Washing, One Confession, and One Meal. In each session, participants also have the opportunity to recite a part of Luther's Small Catechism by memory.)


*4 Faith Formation Projects

(Twice a year, participants will work on a project that highlights the connection between faith and everyday living.)


If you would like to learn more about United, please contact Pastor Michael Goers at St. Matthew.

Advance the Reign of God through One Foundation

"For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ."

                                                                                           (1 Corinthians 3:11, ESV)


A foundation for the Christian life is poured in One Foundation, a 12 session class designed for adults. Sessions are held on Wednesday evenings from 6:30pm--8:00pm. The next opportunity for One Foundation starts on September 6. Topics to be discussed include:


*The Law: God's Design for His Creation

*God's Action in His Creation: Through Christ by the Spirit

*Prayer--The Chief Work of the Christian

*Water and Word

*A Word That Sets Free

*Real Food, Real Drink


For more information on One Foundation, please contact Pastor Michael Goers.

Advance the Reign of God Through Sunday Morning Study

From 10:45am--11:45am each week, the Sunday Morning Study meets for reflection on the Lord's Word and work in this world. The current study is Paul's letter to the Ephesians.


For more information, please contact Pastor Michael Goers.

Advance the Reign of God Through Coffee Break Bible Study

A study in the Scriptures, some coffee, and fellowship are just a few things you will receive at Coffee Break Bible Study. All are invited on Tuesdays from 10:15am--11:15am to the St. Matthew Fellowship Hall for this time led by Pastor Michael Goers. The current study is "A Man Named Martin: Part 2--The Moment."


For more information on Coffee Break Bible Study, please contact Pastor Michael Goers.