Empty No More

Empty No More

“Hey, let’s meet up at church this Sunday. Bring the whole family!” Sincerely, Mother Goose

Dear Friends,

Years ago, after I had received the call to plant the church that has become Victory of the Lamb, I had a dream (actually it was more like a nightmare!). I dreamed no one showed up for church. The place was empty. In my dream I kept watching the clock. The minutes passed. Then hours. I was all alone. It was awful. Thankfully, it was a dream (and hopefully you’ll all show up on Sunday!). But I’ll never forget that feeling—the fear of an empty church (it’s a pastor thing).

Now for you maybe it’s not an empty church that you fear, but rather an empty home. Or perhaps the intense feelings that stir when our most precious life relationships fall apart or those feelings that stir at the prospect of our most meaningful relationships fading away. Can anyone or anything fill those kind of deep, empty spaces in our souls? The good news is Jesus says, “I can!”

Please join me this Sunday at 9 or 10:45 as I wrap up our “Empty” series at church and we find out how!

(ICYMI, watch and share my sermon from this past Sunday. If you’ve ever experienced pressure, if you’ve ever had some regrets about how your life turned out, if you’ve ever felt like your life has no purpose…check it out! I promise you won’t regret it. Or if you’re just curious as to what Buzz Lightyear’s boot has to do with your life…be sure and watch!)

HEADS UP – Time Tweaks Coming in July! The good news is that my nightmare long ago didn’t come true. People are coming to church! More and more every week. And we want people to keep coming to church. We want more people to come to our church. In fact we’re expecting that to happen so that we can continue to share Christ’s victory with as many as possible. That’s why starting in July we’re going to change our service times to 8:30 and 10:15 am as a trial run for 6 months. Our goals are 1) free up parking spaces, sanctuary seats, and room in Victory Kids during the first service because studies have shown that when the sanctuary or parking lot becomes 80% full people start to stay away; and 2) create a more vibrant worship atmosphere during the second service. We will evaluate this trial run at the end of the year.

Nepal Mission Update – Remember the little girl who needed ear implants, the daughter of our missionary there? Thanks to special collections from churches like ours, she received them and is adjusting to them well! She now can say “mama” and “papa” when prompted by her parents. Can you imagine the joy our contacts must feel to know their daughter hears them and can repeat their names? So thank you for your kindness and your prayers. And please keep our contact family and our Nepal mission in your prayers.

The Life-a-thon is this Saturday, May 13th! Family friendly 5K Run/Walk at McCarty park in West Allis. Register at www.Life-A-Thon.org or call 414-727-8176. Join Team Victory of the Lamb! Watch a Life-a-thon 2017 promo video here.

Soccer Camp 2017 – Our 10th annual Soccer Camp will be June 13-16 from 11am-3pm and include lunch. Register here. Don’t wait…space is limited. We’re expecting over 200 kids!

Peter’s Call Day at the Seminary Thursday, May 18th, at 10 am seniors like Peter will be receiving their first full-time ministry calls during a special worship service at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary. It’s an incredible experience to be a part of “Call Day”. All are welcome. If you’re unable to attend in person you can also watch live via livestream. Of special interest is the annual graduation concert that evening with the Seminary Chorus at 7:00 pm.

Get some exercise, Love our neighbors – For years we’ve ministered to the Coventry group home here in Franklin where special 5 ladies live. Partnering with My Team Triumph, our Coventry group home has become an official training site where people can come over and push the ladies in our special jogging strollers around the neighborhood. Pastor Ben, Pastor Bill, or Ryan Solie will be present every Wednesday at 5:30 pm from now through September and you are all invited to participate by coming over to run or walk as we push the ladies around a one mile loop in the neighborhood. Find out more and sign up here on our website. Give it try! You can go at your own pace. It’s really not hard and it’s a wonderful way also for a family to get some exercise together while loving and serving our neighbors.

Moore Family Fundraiser – Our TNT Small Group will be holding a Cookie and Car Wash fundraiser on Saturday, June 3, for one of our members, eight-year old Jordan Moore, who will be undergoing brain surgery in the middle of June. A needs list or two will be coming out soon so that you might have an opportunity to get involved and help support the Moore family. Keep Jordan and her family in your prayers.

Tuition Assistance Fund – The Purpose of the Tuition Assistance Program is: 1. To encourage the young people and families of our congregation to receive a Lutheran based education (Kindergarten through Seminary), through providing some financial assistance, whether based on need or scholarship. 2. To provide some financial assistance to the young people and families of our congregation who intend to pursue the preaching and teaching ministry in our Synod. 3. To provide an opportunity for the members and attendees of our congregation to encourage and support a Lutheran based education for our young people. During the month of May we will be receiving donations to fulfill the purpose of this fund. To contribute to this fund go to our online giving page. Then under “Select Fund” click on Tuition Assistance. To see the tuition assistance fund guidelines or to apply for tuition assistance before June 30, 2017 visit our Christian Education page of our website.

Viking Explorers is a summer academic and athletic program run by Wisconsin Lutheran high School. There are some program booklets and registration forms on the info tables near the Welcome Area or you can go online to www.wlhs.org for more information. Check it out! There’s something for everyone—from athletics to band to robotics and more!

Amazon Smile account. At no cost to you, 0.5% of your purchases will be donated to Victory of the Lamb. All you need to do is go to smile.amazon.com when you make your purchases. Select Victory of the Lamb Exploratory as your organization, and the church will receive the 0.5% in quarterly deposits. Any questions, please let us know.

Sharing Christ’s Victory,

Pastor Ben