Spring 2013 Newsletter - Grace Reformed Church



Spring 2013 Newsletter - Grace Reformed Church
Spring 2013
“Freeing captives
through union with
Christ: God has
rescued and freed
us to worship,
grow, serve and
“Theme Song Theology”
By Pastor Randy Arms
I was recently flipping through the radio dial and
heard a tease for something that made me want to
keep listening through the commercials... greatest
TV theme songs of all time!
I had my issues with the list (The Mary Tyler
Moore Show?!? Before my day... Diff ’rent Strokes?!?
Loved the show, but don’t remember the tune...).
Others I’d forgotten about that brought a smile to
my face (The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air when Will Smith
first busted onto the scene, and of course Happy
Days). And, I was shocked by one glaring omission –
Welcome Back, Kotter! Come on...!!
Makin’ your way in the world today takes everything you’ve
Takin’ a break from all your worries sure would help a lot.
Wouldn’t you like to get away? Sometimes you wanna go
Where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad
you came.
You wanna be where you can see, our troubles are all the same,
You wanna be where everybody knows your name.
You wanna go where people know, people are all the same,
You wanna go where everybody knows your name.
What’s so compelling about these lyrics? and the
melody itself ? In an interview with one of the
But, I was so proud of myself for having figured authors of the song, Gary Portnoy, he explained that
out on my own what the #1 tune of all-time is.... It
the melancholy melody had lyrics which were pretty
was another show that I remember watching both
downtrodden, sad, even morose. “But fortunately,
‘live’ and in syndication after the news each night for the chorus kicks in, and it seems to lift people’s
years... I’m talking about Cheers! Who could forget
spirits. So it’s sort of like the saving grace that let us
that simple, memorable, compelling theme song?? If get away with (the opening lines of the) verse.”
you haven’t heard it before (many of you were born
after it went off the air in 1993) you have got to
Google it & listen to the distinct ditty...
...continued on Page 2
“Theme Song Theology”
By Pastor Randy Arms
...continued from Page 1
Life sometimes seems pretty downtrodden & sad... but in the
People – people who foster a place of authenticity and
gospel we have that which truly lifts people’s spirits... that which genuine friendship – where other people can be themselves.
is truly saving grace.
The kind of place where that which is at the core of who we
are – our names! – are known. As we try to ‘make our way in
One of the things that strikes me of this tune is the unique the world today,’ it sure helps to know that, at the core, our
way that it begins – a beginning that has been described in
troubles really are all kind of alike. We need – not another
iconic terms:
drink – but we need Christ, we need one another & we need
“The now-iconic seven note piano intro (served a unique
role in the song), as a way to call audiences back to the tube...
That’s powerful. And my dream is that GRC would be that
‘to get someone back from the refrigerator.... If someone went
kind of place. How can you do your part to help us with that
to get a beer or a sandwich, we (wanted) something that says,
kind of dream? Let’s be praying that our church home would
‘We’re here!’” What a profound observation... to consider that be precisely that place – “where everybody knows your name.”
seven little notes played on a piano could function as a way to
compel someone back to the couch, to “go” to that place where
Cheers! 
“everybody knows your name.” (Hang with me here... I realize
we’re just talking about a TV show – and one that certainly
didn’t always portray truth truthfully!) But, I have to ask,
what about those lyrics – perhaps even more famous than
the show itself ! – make it such a favorite? What draws us to
those lyrics?
By Youth Pastor Jonathan Cook
I’m sitting in Gretna’s own version of the bar from
Cheers – our local diner. Across the room from me sit 6 men
who all appear to be in their 60’s and 70’s, chatting over
coffee. I see a young boy playing a game on mom’s iPhone as
she stares off into distance, perhaps wondering how she’ll
continue to entertain him when they leave. Another couple
sit without sharing words as they meticulously cut each bite
of sausage and egg, over hard. The owners, Diane, Heather
& Holly, along with server Corrine, are usually sitting over in
the corner, munching on their own late breakfast as business
slows down during these late morning hours. Usually, a
group from St. Patrick’s Catholic Church (...or Gretna
Community Church, or Good Shepherd Lutheran Church,
or Resurrection Lutheran Church, or Journey Church or
Steadfast Bible Church or the Optimists or the Chamber of
Commerce...!) is present – gathered for fellowship & a meal,
and the sharing of lives.
What is it about D&K’s Diner in Gretna that makes it a
place where these diverse groups gather? Well, for one thing,
it seats a lot of people; they’re open for food & you can get
nourished while you’re there. Kind of like a church – pews
(or folding chairs!) and space are offered; there’s also a
nourishing of another kind a church must offer – the Word
of God.
But there’s something else just as vital to being a longedfor environment, as expressed in that favorite theme song.
In my UFF corner (a funny way to say youth for those of you who
are old, you know like 28 and over) I’d like to do 2 things: 1)
Present a wrap-up of the past year’s main events and emphases,
and 2) present a plan for youth ministries this coming Summer. So
here we go…
1) The Past -> Fall/Winter
This past year I led the Middle School youth every Wednesday
night, teaching through the Gospel of Mark. We highlighted
themes of faith, Jesus’ healing power, Spiritual warfare between
two kingdoms, discipleship characteristics, and sacrificial love.
While I led the MS group, six faithful volunteers led the High
School students in small group discussions. Jenny Hietrbink,
Angela Rose, and Jodie Cook led the girls group and Jason
Hietbrink, Joel Nelson, and Bryan Geels led the guys group. Their
discussions were focused around community, relationships,
image, identity, and intimacy. Beginning in January, I led the HS
youth on Sunday nights through the first four chapters of Genesis
studying creation, relationship, intimacy, sin, the fall, brokenness,
and the hope of redemption. Since Easter I have been leading
both the MS on Wednesdays and the HS on Sundays through a
short series on the Resurrection.
In addition to these weekly meetings we had several events. The
High School group went on a weekend retreat in early November
to Fremont in addition to bowling, Defy Gravity, pottery painting,
and Ginger bread house-making. As a MS group we did Random
Acts of Kindness, played in a Dodgeball tournament, and hosted
a LOCK-IN. The goal of our activities are to build community and
relationships while also having fun outside of our weekly group
Continued on Page 3
By Pastor Eric Olson
This past February, the Olsons took a
trip to visit the family of Tim
and Kristy Holliday. Before they were
called to serve the Lord on the Mexico/
U.S. border, Kristy and Elaine had
developed a close friendship. We
enjoyed spending a few days with the
Hollidays and their children, as well as
Scott and Stella Floyd and their family,
(whom some may remember from Scott’s
days as an Assistant Pastor at Harvest
Community Church (PCA)!) One
highlight was seeing the work the
Holliday’s are assisting in Reynosa,
Mexico. We toured the beautiful
campus of a ministry for deaf children,
(as the opportunities for special needs
children in the public schools in Mexico
is very limited!) We spoke to the pastor
who founded this ministry, who told us
the touching story of how God moved
him to start this much needed work. He
was sharing the gospel to a group of
children when 2 of the children in this
group could not understand, because
they were deaf. This pastor was
heartbroken because these children were
deaf and neither he nor they, knew sign
language. The Lord impressed upon
him, right there and then, that he had no
way of sharing the gospel with them; nor
...that Jason and Tiffany Beaty are the newest
members of Grace Reformed Church... ...that
Sean and Averi (Nissen) Badeer are moving
back to Omaha this summer... ...that
“typewriter” is the longest word that can be
made using the letters only on one row of the
keyboard... ...that Phil Belin is pursuing his
pilot’s license... ...that Rich Baldwin will be
back in Omaha with his family to begin a
summer pastoral internship at GRC on
Wednesday, May 22nd... ...that bats always
turn left when exiting a cave... ...that Tim
Roberts, Jessica Grossman, Tyler Roth and
Jennifer Jones are all graduating this
Spring... ...that we are planning another 3 on 3
basketball outreach this summer in the GRC
parking lot... ...that Jenny Hietbrink’s stage
name is “Jenny North”... ...that Caden
Wassenaar starts a hilarious Facebook video
of the “Harlem Shake”... ...that on Tabi Olson’s
latest ministry trip with Operation Mobilization,
their team will be sleeping on the street [please pray!]... ...that Mary Bradley is excited
about GRC’s summer plans to launch Backyard Bible Clubs... ...that new member
Shawn Paulsen is an avid fan of “spinning” classes at the gym... ...that a monkey's skull
wrapped in leather and paper was used as a soccer ball in the very first World's Cup
Soccer Championships in Uruguay... ...that Steve Hydeen is teaching a comedy improv
class at Millard West High School... ...that harvester ants “sleep” is merely decreased
activity... ...that 111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321... ...that Caden’s
dad and mom are the comedic relief in the aforementioned video... ...that harvester ants
“sleep” occurs in 1 minute increments... ...that members of GRC sleep an average of
500 times longer per night than harvester ants? I thought you should!
had they any means of understanding the
gospel. Soon after this, Isaiah 55
Ministries was formed, and now is one of
only a handful of Christian ministries
that focuses on helping deaf children in
Mexico. Join our family in praying for
the Hollidays, as they partner with
worthy ministries such as this. 
UFF STUFF, continued
2) The Future -> Summer
This summer, High School meetings will continue to meet weekly on Sunday evenings. However, instead of meeting at church, we will
meet at Cottonwood Park on 155th and Pacific every week at 6:30pm (not 4:14). Cottonwood Park has a sand volleyball court, outdoor
basketball courts, outdoor grills and picnic area, a softball field, and lots of open field space for games of all kinds. We will also begin a
study of the book of ACTS together on these Sunday nights.
In the summer we will take a break from “The WELL” so Middle School will NOT meet weekly. Instead we will host several MS events over
the course of the Summer which are outreach focused and I hope that every student will bring friends to these events. We will also do a
couple combined outreach events including the 3-on-3 Basketball tournament, a fun night at the church, and a Back-2-School Bash.
Keep your eye out for a Summer Calendar that will come out soon! I will have this Calendar done early in May. This will provide more
details of dates and events that we will do this summer for each group and as a youth group together. I am really looking forward to this
summer of ministry, summer is what youth pastor’s live for! (I mean I get to tell all the elders, “Sorry I’m busy playing basketball, or
Frisbee, or riding go-carts, I can’t do anything else right now.”) More summer details to come soon!
Our last “WELL” of the year is May 8, on which we will have an end of year celebration! Plan on bringing your whole family to
this fun night of food, fun, and games. In addition, we will be doing some “fun” fundraising for our summer youth trips including THE
EDGE middle school camp where pastors and leaders will embarrass themselves for a price. You won’t want to miss out! We will also be
announcing summer children’s ministry plans shortly since we no longer have Sunday School and will take a summer Sabbath from “THE
WELL”. Parents, I think you’ll be excited!
Casey & Casey Nazarczuk
(pictured below)
Hi. We are Casey and Casey Nazarczuk. Yes, you read that
correctly. We are both Caseys. We have been married for a
little over three years, and we have a nine month old son
named Reid. We are from Illinois and have only lived in
Nebraska for four months. Casey, the boy, graduated from
Northern Illinois University in December of 2011, and
shortly after graduating, he got a job working for Menards
Distribution. I worked at Aldi Foods as a manager up until
the time we had our son, and since Reid’s birth, I have
stayed home with him. About seven months into Casey's
job at Menards he was offered a position in Valley, NE.
Joe & Nicole Driewer
(pictured above)
Greetings from the Driewers! (Although we don’t quite give
our name the full German umph, the “w” is pronounced like
a “v.”) It’s been a pleasure getting to know you all the past
couple years. Nicole and I are native Nebraskans but we’ve
spent the larger part of our 11 years of marriage in Missouri.
But don’t worry, we made every effort to “touch no unclean
thing.” Just kidding, we’re glad to be back in Big Red
Country. We met at my brother’s wedding, of all places.
Nicole taught me some polka moves—maiden name
Pilakowski—and I, of course, wowed her with my stylish
socks that had “left” and “right” printed on them.
continued rookies | regulars | veterans
Driewer, continued: Ahh, love! Nicole knew she was marrying a
student, but I don’t think she anticipated spending the next
several years working weekend nights as an RN while I was going
to school, nor growing our young family during even more school.
But that’s what happened! The Lord has blessed us with four
wonderful daughters: Margaret (10), Isabelle (8), Lucille (6), and
Lydia (4). Maggie is finishing up 4th grade and enjoys arts, crafts,
and all things horse; Izzie is finishing 3rd grade, loves messy
science experiments and is primary caregiver to a fish and two
guinea pigs; Lucy, a kindergartener, gives great hugs and is fond
of fairy books, dress-up and pretend; and Liddy enjoys living
most of life in a musical by singing sentences and shaking her
small frame—overall she’s keeping up with her sisters very well.
We love our ladies and thank God for them. We moved to Gretna
from St. Louis in 2011 so I could take a job at UNMC as a
medical physicist. I know, Gretna is a long ways from UNMC but
Gretna just rocks and we also had a good recommendation from
Pastor Arms. It has been a great blessing to be here. Nicole has
Nazarczuk, continued: We accepted the offer, and two weeks
later we were here. God has really been faithful through it all in
providing a church family and wonderful neighbors. We look
forward to meeting our extended church family over at Fort
Street. 
Grace Gazette is a quarterly publication of Grace
Reformed Church (PCA), Omaha, Nebraska.
transitioned out of nursing into staying home full time (though she
still does do a lot to nurse our boo-boos at home!). And even
though my work schedule has been tough at times, it’s always
interesting! We’re privileged to serve and be served in this body
we call GRC. It’s a blessing to gather with you in worship of our
great God and King!
-Joe, for all the Driewers 