Good morning:

If you have ever worked the night shift or tossed and turned for hours unable to sleep because of worry, you know how endless the hours of darkness can seem. Everyone else is asleep and unaware of what you’re going through. What keeps you going? It’s the anticipation and certainty that the night will end. The eastern horizon will gradually brighten and a new day will dawn.

Last night was in many ways the darkest moment in history. God’s Son was brutally crucified at the hands of Roman soldiers. Even worse, He was forsaken by His heavenly Father in punishment for the sins of the world. From a human perspective it was so horribly wrong. The disciples were stunned. The women prepared spices to anoint a corpse Sunday morning.

But if they had been listening to the Lord, they would have had reason for anticipation and hope. Jesus told His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, suffer many things at the hands of His enemies, be crucified, and on the third day rise again. It was foretold long before by the prophets. Isaiah wrote, “Though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days” (Is. 53:10). “He will swallow up death forever” (Is. 25:8). Jesus would rise and bring the dawning of a new day filled with light and life.

No matter how dark your days or how long your nights, Jesus’ suffering, death, and resurrection in your behalf is the certainty that it will end in brilliant sunshine. For Jesus was crucified for you. His death paid for your sins and washed you clean in His blood. You were buried with Him by baptism, and as He was raised from the dead, so you have received new spiritual life. Not just today, but every day is a time to anticipate glorious things by faith in the Savior who promises, “Because I live, you also will live” (Jn. 14:19).

Looking forward to Easter’s dawn,

Easter morning song services will be held at 8:00 and 9:30 a.m. The Lord’s Supper will also be celebrated. No Sunday school or Bible class.

Thank you! The many months of masks, social distancing, half-capacity services, and canceled fellowship gatherings have not been easy for any of us. Thank you for your understanding, patience, and loving concern for one another, even when opinions about the best course of action have differed.
A few days ago the Wis. Supreme Court overturned the statewide mask mandate, leaving it up to municipalities to implement any restrictions. It is also reported that the state legislature may consider drafting new emergency orders in coming days.

The Bd. of Elders has not had an opportunity to discuss the court’s ruling, the local health officer’s recommendations, and how best to encourage in-person attendance for services and make everyone feel comfortable doing so. The Elders will be meeting this Thursday. You are welcome to contact Pastor or any of the Elders (John Mueller, Norm Mackensen, Andrew Albrecht) with your thoughts. In the meantime, we ask that you continue with our current practice.
The Lord told the disciples the night before His crucifixion: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (Jn. 13:34-35). May that love fill our hearts and be the motivation for all we say and do.

Here is the link for service signup:
Signing up for the Sunday service by 6 p.m. Saturday is appreciated and helpful and a way of showing Christian love for one another. It gives the Elders and ushers an idea of how many people to prepare for. When you sign up you can also see how full the service will be, and if you wish, consider attending the other service. By signing up, you can easily be informed if that were advisable because of contact with someone at the service who later became ill.
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