Faith Webbing at Hope Lutheran!

May 31, 2016

The North American Lutheran Church (NALC) is promoting “faith webbing” as an intergenerational approach to family, youth and children’s ministry. This approach can be engaged by any size congregation. They are partnering with Gary and Laurie Pecuch who have years of experience in family, youth and children’s ministry. They are giving leadership to this initiative. Hope Lutheran will be embracing and engaging this approach. More information to come, but to get started, explore these links:

Faith Webbing website (click here)

Faith Webbing video (click here)

Go to Germany in 2017! 500th Anniversary of Reformation

May 31, 2016

Pastors Joel and Wendy have been asked to be a part of tour to Germany in 2017 which will mark 500 years since Martin Luther posted 95 ideas (theses) for debate on the church door in a small town in Germany in 1517, launching what is known as the “Reformation.”

You are invited! The trip dates are April 24 – May 4 2017. Pre-trip dates to Italy are April 20-24.

This is a very unique and amazing opportunity to travel with Dr. Walter Sundberg, retired professor of Church History from Luther Seminary of St. Paul, MN. Dr. Sundberg will teach at all the Reformation historical sites. He will also teach on a pre-trip to Rome, Florence and Venice, recounting the history leading to the Reformation. The trip will end in Berlin. The implications of the Reformation insights for our time will be a part of the trip conversations. Dr. Sundberg is a very dynamic teacher! In the midst of the trip, “Martin and Katy Luther” played by Johan and Sonja Hinderlie will be offering humorous and insightful dramas along the way. Johan and Sonja are the retired directors of Mount Carmel Ministries, a Lutheran Bible camp and former summer campus of Lutheran Bible Institute, located in Alexandria, MN.

More detailed information along with registration information is on the brochure panels at the following links:

Germany & Italy Pre-Trip April 2017 Reg Form

Why Rome? Why Berlin? Learning from Dr. Sundberg

11 Day Germany & Italy Pre-Trip April 2017 Brochure (1)

11 Day Germany & Italy Pre-Trip April 2017 Reg Form

Webinar Series: North American Lutheran Church

May 31, 2016

The North American Lutheran Church has been hosting training webinars to renew and increase fruitfulness in the lives of individuals and congregations. Beginning in July and continuing through the end of 2016, these webinars will focus on building the kingdom and having a kingdom mindset in our congregations. More info will be coming! Here is information on a current webinar series:

Renewing the Church Through Senior Ministry: Continuing

Webinar by Pastor Brad Hales

The local congregation is “graying” at a rapid rate. Over 10,000 people each day are turning 65 years of age. Instead of lamenting the “aging of the church,” we need to embrace it and help older adults grow in their discipleship of Jesus. Through “second half ministry” a congregation can be renewed and “re-fired” for mission.  For more information – please see the video introduction to this new series:

Renewing the Church Through Senior Ministry

Join us on the first Thursday of each month at 7.30 pm EST for a free webinar, began Thursday, April 7th).  To register or for more information, please visit: Previous sessions have been posted and can be viewed online.

North American Lutheran Church News

May 31, 2016

Hope Lutheran Church is proud to part of both the North American Lutheran Church (NALC) and Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ (LCMC). The annual national convocation will be held in Anaheim, CA, August 12-14 (click here fore more information or to register). The latest edition of the NALC News can be found by clicking here.

Ordinary People Hearing God’s Call: June 7-9

May 31, 2016

Ordinary People Hearing God’s Call
Seminar reflecting on your current purpose & call in all of life!
We will meet together for three evenings (yes, all three are needed)!
Dates and times:  June 7-9
Dinner served at 6:15 PM. Each Evening ending at 9:30PM
Hope Lutheran Church, Cedar Hill, TX 
Cost: $20 (food & materials)
Invite others!  RSVP: Pastor Wendy
If we need to shift the dates and times for those who are interested, we will!
Read: “Small is Big” (article below)!
Learn many reasons why you should attend!
Find out how! The living God has always accomplished His important work through ordinary people like you … people with fears, insecurities … people who weak and foolish! Yes! Jesus is calling you and has unique and important kingdom work for you to do! This is a workshop for discovering and discerning Jesus’ call! Jesus’ call is both broad and specific. It touches on nearly aspect of the Christian life! The seminar is fun, inspiriting and nonthreatening.
Small is Big: You are Gifted and Called!
Be continually filled with the Holy Spirit. Why? Because, small is big.
Small is big. Though you may feel “small” in some way, with the Holy Spirit, “small is big.” If you want to have a transformative influence and a big kingdom impact, then you will need to be set on fire by the Holy Spirit. You will need the Holy Spirit’s power and gifts.
Early in His ministry, Jesus began enlisting ordinary people like fishermen and tax collectors. Through knowing and following Him, Jesus began to transform and train these disciples (literally: learners) by demonstrating His kingdom agenda:  teaching God’s ways, forgiving sins, proclaiming good news, healing this broken world, pointing people to His saving death and resurrection, and multiplying His kingdom work by “fishing” for others.
Quite beautiful, miraculous and amazing, the living God has always been calling, training and mobilizing ordinary people like you for His kingdom agenda … people who were old, young, widows, weak, poor and even wayward (1 Corinthians 1:26-28). After calling people, God then anointed them with His Holy Spirit, equipping them with His power and gifts so they might walk in conformity with His call, accomplishing his plans and purposes.
The Biblical Greek word for “church” literally means “called out ones.” “Ones” … ordinary people like you “called” by Jesus to be transformed and trained by Him in order to go “out,” transforming the world in His name. Scripturally and fundamentally, “church” is not an organization, institution, building or place; rather, it is you, one of the “called out ones.” Furthermore, a “member” is not a name on a list to be tallied; rather, Paul used the term, “member” to illustrate how every believer is an important part of Jesus’ ongoing kingdom work, just like parts or “members” of a body, having a needed function (Romans 12:4-8; 1 Corinthians 12:12-31)
Today, Jesus is calling you! Do you know Him? Can you recognize His voice? What is He calling you to be, do and say to increase His kingdom? How is His Holy Spirit active in you? What gifts of the Holy Spirit are already at work through you? Jesus needs you! You are an important “member” of His ongoing kingdom work.
When you trusted Jesus and were baptized, you were anointed with the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit was poured out upon you and took up residence in you. The Biblical Greek word for “Christian” literally means “anointed one.” His Holy Spirit gave you breath when you were raised from the dead to new life. His Holy Spirit is healing you, increasing your confidence and diminishing your fears. The Holy Spirit is calling you, leading and guiding you.  The Holy Spirit’s power is in you, equipping you for the unique kingdom work that Jesus is calling you to do. The Holy Spirit has given you gifts, including supernatural gifts. The Holy Spirit will multiply your efforts. Small is big.
When Harriette became a widow at eighty years old, she needed to move from her house of many years to a seniors’ apartment complex. One day as she sat in her apartment feeling sorry for herself, she recognized Jesus’ voice. Jesus called her, saying: “Harriette, I want you to eliminate the loneliness in this place.” From that day on, Harriette was launched on a mission. Her gifts given by the Holy Spirit equipped her for this mission. She had a shepherd’s gift, a healing gift, an encouragement gift and a mercy gift. She was a prayer warrior. Beginning with befriending the lonely, over many years, she visited countless people transported from her building to the hospital, prayed with people, anointed people with oil, and helped people to trust in Jesus as they approached their last breath. Harriette began to testify to others how the Holy Spirit was transforming people through her. Many were inspired. One day a retreat speaker heard her story. The next week he told her story, sending it out to his email network all over the world. Even though she didn’t leave home, Harriette was proclaiming, healing, teaching and multiplying Jesus’ kingdom to the ends of the earth.
You can too!
1)      Press on to know Jesus as if you wanted to win an Olympic race (Philippians 3:7-14)! Pray. Talk with Him about anything and everything. Learn to recognize His voice. Listen to His word, especially the Holy Scriptures.
2)      Follow Jesus. Surrender to Him. Rest in Him. Be transformed and trained as His disciple, learning from Him about His salvation and kingdom work. Repent and be transformed daily. Practice spiritual disciplines.
3)      Serve Jesus. Identify your “spiritual” gifts given by the Holy Spirit. (Use the free inventory at Learn about your gifts. Your gifts show you how the Holy Spirit is active in you, motivating and working in supernatural ways.
4)      Discern Jesus’ call. It is unique and particular, custom designed for you. It is all encompassing, affecting your being, doing and speaking in all of life, 24/7: family, work, community, world and the gathering of believers (resources and seminars on spiritual gifts and call at
5)      Continually invite the Holy Spirit into your life. The apostle Paul encouraged everyday ordinary believers including you: “Do not get drunk (overly filled) with wine, for that is excessiveness, but be continually filled with the Spirit.” (Ephesians 5:18) For this reason, in our tradition, we seek the Lord and pray to Him, asking him to repeatedly “stir up” His Holy Spirit. Pray with me: Father in heaven, for Jesus’ sake stir up, renew and increase in me your Holy Spirit. AMEN
Jesus told a parable about “small.”
“The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” (Matthew 9:31-32)
Small is big. With the Holy Spirit, “small is big.”
Published in Sola Publishing Newsletter, April 2016;
By Pastor Wendy A.W. Berthelsen,
Copyright © 2016 by Wendy A.W. Berthelsen
Pastor Wendy

Summer Women’s Opportunities

May 31, 2016

All women are invited to these summer opportunities:

  • Exercise class with Good Shepherd: Monday evenings, 6:30-7:30pm, Membership Fee: $25 monthy; Call 469-316-4179 for more info.
  • June 1-3, Together Conference, sponsored by Trinity Church, Cedar Hill, TX; Register at

Together conference


National Day of Prayer: May 5

March 30, 2016

National Day of Prayer will be observed in Cedar Hill on May 5. Details are on the flyer below.

National day of prayer

Mission & Discernment Process: April & May

March 30, 2016

Mission & Discernment: Begins Saturday, April 2

Lord Jesus Christ, renew and increase in all of us, your Holy Spirit and power in your name, AMEN

Please see Pastor Wendy’s invitation below where she gives the details regarding Mission Discernment. I pray that you will prayerfully consider attending along with me. I am hopeful that these 8 hours or so, will reap a spiritual harvest for our church and for me personally. Won’t you consider joining us?

Thank you,
Raymond Luster, Council President

Beginning on Saturday April 2 (9am, Berthelsen home)… Breakfast will be served.

All of the Council and also anyone interested from the congregation will be invited to participate in a prayerful listening and discernment process, regarding the outward focus of our church and how that relates to the inward focus of our church. Participation will be optional for all. We will focus on the following: spiritual growth, foreign mission, church renewal, works of compassion, call, domestic mission, witness, evangelism and how all of these are related. We will focus on our present strengths and also engage listening prayer to see if the Lord will reveal anything new regarding our future. We will consider this individually as well us collectively (how the Lord is leading us together). We will invite Jesus to rule and reign over this process and the Holy Spirit to empower all of us. We will expect our Lord Jesus to work as He did through common ordinary fishermen and tax collectors, perhaps working through something as small as a “mustard seed,” giving birth to something of significance over time. We will not predict the outcome. This has already been brought before the Council in general terms.

Rev. Dr. Gemechis Buba, North American Lutheran Church Assistant to the Bishop for Mission and some of his staff teams have done training, gave presentations and prepared materials for such a process, focusing on one of the NALC’s values, “Mission-Driven. Some in our congregation have been a part of these sessions. Each of our times together, we will use some of these presentations and materials. In addition, we will have times of intentional prayerful listening, waiting to see if the Lord might reveal something new to us.

We will do this over four Saturday mornings in April and May, beginning at 9am and lasting two hours. Here are the tentative dates: April 2, April 16, April 30 and May 14. We will shift the time and dates if needed.

Please RSVP or indicate an interest even if you cannot come to the April 2 session.

Pastor Wendy

Opportunities to Grow in Knowing Jesus!

January 27, 2016

“Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” John 17:3
Do you know Jesus? Are you in a living active relationship with Him? Have you offered your life to Him and asked Him to bring repentance and forgiveness of sins to you? Have you asked Him to be your Lord (in control of all). It’s crucial to know Jesus to experience true life from now unto eternity. Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart. We hope you are pressing on, getting to know Jesus through his Word and prayer. The Scriptures tell us that prayer and the Word show evidence of living faith. Here are some opportunities. Click on the link:
2016 Spiritual Growth
Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart.
Jesus says, Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20

Lenten Dinners & Worship: “The Passover”

January 27, 2016

The Lenten season begins on Ash Wednesday, February 10. “Patterns of Evidence: The Passover in Exodus” from Exodus 12-14 (Exodus 1-15) will be our Lenten theme for the entire the Lenten season.

Jesus became our Passover lamb, covering us with His blood so that the angel of death would “passover.”

Simple dinners will begin at 6PM preceding the worship.

Wednesday worship services will be at 7:00 PM, ending on March 16 and leading up to Holy Week beginning with Palm Sunday on March 20.



For more on our Lenten theme, see our Heralds of Hope newsletter.

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