Worship With Us

With the universal Christian Church, The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod teaches and responds to the love of the Triune God: the Father, creator of all that exists; Jesus Christ, the Son, who became human to suffer and die for the sins of all human beings and to rise to life again in the ultimate victory over death and Satan; and the Holy Spirit, who creates faith through God's Word and Sacraments. The three persons of the Trinity are coequal and coeternal, one God.

Worship Schedule

We invite all to worship with us at Bethlehem Lutheran Church and to listen to the Word of God as Pastor Mark Bertermann and Pastor Andrew Noble present valuable sermons and life lessons.

Sunday Worship: 8:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.
Children’s Sunday School (age 3 – 5th grade): 9:30 a.m. in the worship area
Youth and Adult Education (6th grade and up): 9:40 a.m.

Walking Together at Bethlehem Lutheran

The word "synod" in the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod comes from the Greek words that mean "walking together." It has rich meaning in our church body, because the congregations voluntarily choose to belong to the Synod. Diverse in their service, these congregations hold to a shared confession of Jesus Christ as taught in Holy Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions.

Thoughts from Pastor Mark

Are You Coasting?

I was chatting on the phone with a brother pastor in another state recently. He didn’t come right out and ask it but, in effect, he seemed to be wondering whether I was “coasting” in the ministry. I told him I was not and gave him my reasons why, but I have been thinking about the question ever since.

We all know what coasting is. Perhaps you had, like me, a long and gradual hill near your home as a child. You rode your bike and recall the pleasurable feeling of gliding down the lengthy incline, not having to peddle or exert any significant energy (other than keeping from running off the road). It felt good. It was comfortable, perhaps even a bit exhilarating.

To be honest, we’re all creatures of habit and we have a natural tendency to “Take the path of least resistance” as we go through life. It’s how we’re wired. Put those two together and you have a recipe for coasting through life.

So, my friend’s implied question is a good one to ponder. It’s a challenging diagnostic question. It’s a tough one to answer honestly.

It’s possible and happens more often than I’d like to see that folks “coast” in many ways. People coast in their marriages (way too common!), their careers, their parenting, their grand parenting, their life as a church member, in their prayer life, in their physical fitness, and in many other ways. And it’s dangerous. Deadly. Someone has said, “Only dead fish go with the flow.”

So, am I coasting? It’s a question I need to ask myself honestly at this point in my life and career. Allow me to get a bit personal.

I’m reading, often having two or more books I’m working on related to theology and church life. I’m planning, looking ahead in ministry to where God is leading us as a congregation. I’m dreaming, seeking to be open to bringing about what God has laid upon my heart. I’m networking, meeting regularly with a brother from another church for sharing and prayer. I’m mentoring, meeting regularly with a young pastor from another church. I’m reaching out, building relationships with folks in the community. I’m exercising, seeking to care for this temple of the Holy Spirit that I am. I’m praying, continuing to cry out for God’s blessing on Bethlehem with specific requests (some of which I’ve been praying 13 years for). I’m growing, continually finding God teaching me new things from his Word. I’m accountable, giving Pastor Noble, Marilou, the Board of Elders, and all who read this (you!) permission to let me know when and if I seem to be “coasting.”

So, “Are you coasting?” is a great diagnostic question each of us must ask that one we see in the mirror.

Pastor Mark