Monthly Archives: January 2015

Pastor Mike’s Weekly E-News Message

Hi, Hopesters!

While there hasn’t been a compelling reason to tune in to the Super Bowl since 2007, or a righteous outcome since 1986, still most Americans – even semi-deflated Bears fans – will watch the “big game” on Sunday.

It’s a “big weekend” for us at Hope, too – the annual all-church Souper Bowl Food Drive - and hungry Iowans need you to get into this game, rather than just watch!

Our goal is simple: to fully stock every food pantry in central Iowa for the rest of the winter! To accomplish this really big goal, we really do need our entire church family to participate! This weekend, when you come to worship, please bring at least a few bags of groceries (the good stuff, on the most needed list). We’ll also collect aspecial offering of money (100% goes directly to the food pantries). Most food pantries in central Iowa are small and prefer food donations. A few local pantries, however, prefer gifts of money since they’re big enough to hire staff to purchase the food themselves.

Either way, food or money, your donations make a big difference! Local food pantries struggle to keep up with demand this time of year. Generous giving levels that accompany the holidays tend to fade significantly as winter rolls on. Food pantries are left with too many empty shelves, leaving too many Iowans with empty stomachs.

We’re a big church. We can change that. And since we can, according to Jesus, we must. (Luke 12:48) Thanks in advance for being the kind of Christians who show up in a big way for big games (rather than just watch)! See you at the Souper Bowl!

Mike Housholder

P.S.- Worship this weekend at Hope should be, well… super! We’ll focus on one of my all-time favorite stories (high drama) in Luke’s Gospel (4:16-22) with a sermon called “The Carpenter’s Kid Goes Public!” I’ll preach at all of the services on Saturday night and Sunday morning, and Pastor Jeremy will do the same on Sunday night. Live music. Free bread and wine, too. Come and see!

Pastor Mike’s Weekly E-news Message

Good morning, Hope folks!

Every once in a while, in ways that we can’t predict, plan or control, God does something extraordinary at Hope.

This past weekend, more than 400 people answered the Holy Spirit’s call to be baptized at Hope - over 100 of those had never been baptized, and the rest came forward to affirm their baptisms as a public declaration of their renewed faith in Jesus Christ. Another 100 or so were baptized at our other campuses in Johnston-GrimesDes MoinesWaukee and Ankeny.

It’s rare for a Lutheran church to witness 100 or more adult baptisms in one year, much less oneweekend. Don’t misunderstand. I’m not boasting about what we did at Hope, but about what the Lord did at Hope … a biblical thing to do (2 Corinthians 10:17) …  and worthy of our recognition and celebration!

Many who came forward had stories to tell. Stories of repentance (Mark 1: 415) and radical transformation that point to a God who is active and alive in our world … stories of God’s grace and mercy experienced … stories of newly discovered peace and hope. Smiles and tears of joy were the norm, and God’s presence was strong.

Praise God!

Basking in the glow of what God has already done, we look forward to whatever happens next, led by God’s Spirit, as we continue our year-long journey through the Gospels. This weekend at Hope, our Meet Jesus sermon series moves onward to the Gospel of Luke. Pastor Jeremy and I will draw your attention to the fascinating story of Jesus as a 12-year old boy teaching in the Jerusalem Temple (Luke 2:41-52). It’s going to be another great weekend at Hope … bring a Bible and a few friends who don’t have a church home!

Mike Housholder
Preacher with a Still Semi-Soaked Baptizing Hand

P.S.- Don’t forget about some of the great upcoming big events at Hope (click for more info): Fulfill Your Ministry women’s conference,Daddy-Daughter DanceSouper Bowl Food DriveBig Daddy Weave concert! Plus, in addition to all of the other classes at Hope that will enhance your faith, I encourage you to check out Group Launch, and the weekly Pastor’s Bible Study, most often led by “Professor” Richard, on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm.