Easter Follow-Up

The final tally is 102 who were in attendance for our Resurrection Sunday service. We are not about numbers; ultimately, we are about souls and every chair can hold a soul. I think of Steve Schmidt’s comment to volunteers while they are packing ocean-going containers leaving from Love Packages …“Every hole is a soul!” Every space in that container could hold another piece of literature which another soul could read and come to Christ! For us an empty chair, which I talked about last week, has potential, has possibilities to be filled with new attenders, new converts, new leaders, new church planters. Imagine the possibilities if we will just believe God for what he says in His Word. Scripture tells us He’s [God] able to do exceedingly abundantly more than we can ask or think… this passage is from Ephesians 3:20-21. Peaching is a great part of my responsibility as the lead pastor of this fellowship, but preaching is not what brings people here from all over northwest Wisconsin, although I humbly submit that God has gifted me to be effective in preaching the gospel. I’m no Tommy Barnett, but we both know the responsibility of not compromising the message of the cross. Side-note: If you picked your church because of the preacher behind the pulpit, will you stay at that church if said preacher gets called to another fellowship? My goal continues to be; preach practical, biblical, spirit-lead messages focused on reaching across the spectrum of spiritual maturity of those who worship here each and every Sunday. A major reason we were able to have over 100 people in attendance on Sunday is you! As I said on Palm Sunday, you are the living proof of the transforming, resurrecting power of Jesus. This week we will most likely have less than 100, I hope not, I hope we have over 100 with us in attendance. I wrote this article earlier in the week, humbled by the reality of drawing a larger than average crowd last week, even amid COVID, (One day COVID will only be spoken as part of history.....Amen!) knowing this week will be more in line with our average, which is currently 65. Whoever shows up this week, no matter what the total number, will be worth it all because lives will be impacted by resurrection power once again. Resurrection power is not something we should talk about only on Easter Sunday or during the Easter season. On Thursday of this week, resurrection power came alive in someone’s life who I had the privilege of helping receive Christ! Resurrection power should flow from us regularly. Since He lives within us, our access to “life conquering death” empowerment is 24/7. As we live out our Christian faith “resurrection power” should be evident to those around us. Once again, the scriptures are so true because they declare to us “Christ in you the hope of glory…” In 2015, our first Easter together at Hawthorne Assembly had about 75 gathered that day, and on an average Sunday before COVID, it was closer to 85. If Jesus tarries, we should believe in the next year or two to have an average attendance similar to how many came last week. (Even three years ago when we had 140 in attendance.) We should be believing in growth, for a second service, adding on to the facility, considering starting satellite churches. Iron River is the perfect location for another church fellowship. Let’s be continually believing in growth and advancement in 2021. Thank you for the privilege of serving as the Lead Pastor at Hawthorne Assembly. I hope when you read my pastor's report for 2020 you sense my excitement. My heart for northwest Wisconsin continues to increase; I hope yours does too. Please plan on attending our annual business meeting TODAY right after the potluck. Come prepared to vote for those nominated to serve as deacons. Together is Better!


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