Looking Back at 2022 & Looking Ahead to 2023

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Dear <<First Name>>,

For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth! …King of Kings and Lord of Lords! And He shall reign for ever and ever! Hallelujah!

As Christmas approaches, once again the old Christmas carols ring through my heart and mind. They are so rich in the truths of Scripture. Serving Civil Servants with Scripture is the motto of Capitol Studies, and this time of year especially facilitates opportunities to share Scripture.

Looking Ahead

When the Senate convenes in January, many new faces will be in the offices. I am praying now that God will give me face-to-face opportunities to give an invitation to the Bible studies and to share the good news of salvation. I know the senators, too, have a wide range of emotions regarding the entire 2022 electoral process. Please pray with me that the Holy Spirit will heal hurts and mend relationships so that God’s work will not be hindered. Pray that hearts will be tender to the will of God.

Ways You Can Help

I believe God wants to grow the ministry of Capitol Studies during 2023. As the ministry grows, our financial needs also grow. There is a printing cost for each Bible study. We need people and churches who are willing to help with food or funds for a Bible study meal. You do not necessarily need to cover the entire thing, though some do. We have several individuals who give what they can. When we put their gifts together, it is enough to print a study or fund a meal, and we are grateful. That is how the body of Christ should work—each one doing his or her part. Then God gives the growth (1 Corinthians 3:6). Perhaps God would burden your heart to send an extra gift our direction yet this year. Together we can see leaders who are impacted by God’s Word, make a godly difference in our city, state, and country.

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Looking Back on 2022

A year ago in January, I first began having Bible studies in the Capitol. As Anne Marie and I look back over that year, we can see so many ways God has worked in our lives personally and in the lives of those we serve. We find ourselves caught in conversation with varied people after each study. Needs abound… health issues, work difficulties, family heartaches, deaths, life decisions. We are grateful that God has allowed us to build relationships that are comfortable enough that these needs can be shared. The growing friendships among the staff members have been enjoyable to see.

The Gifts of Volunteers

None of this would be possible without the help of our many volunteers. Some proofread Bible studies, while others set them up in the template. Some prepare media posts, while others prepare meals. Some use their graphic design skills to enhance our Capitol updates, while others use their computer skills to facilitate their writing and mailing. Some give hours to prepare the mailings, others give hours to prepare the financial reports. I am so grateful. Though I may be the name and face of Capitol Studies, those who give of themselves for this ministry are truly its backbone. I am glad that God keeps the records. I know that He is honored through the unselfish gifts of time and service that our volunteers give to Him.

Chaplain Arin Hess opening a day of the Legislature with prayer.

Answers to Prayer

I also want to thank our prayer supporters. Many of you prayed that we would be able to find a large enough room for the Bible studies. Those prayers have been answered time and time again. First, we were directed to the Capitol lunchroom, then we crossed the street to the Omaha Room in the Administrative Services Building, and now we are back in the Capitol in room 1307. It is a spacious room that is available until the legislative session starts, when it will be used for various meetings. Every week for the last couple months we have had someone new attend the Bible study. Most who attend continue coming. This past week someone came from a state office a couple blocks away. Keep praying about a room for the legislative session. We are excited to see where God puts us next. Your prayers are making a difference.

Thank you for your prayers for additional financial supporters as well. Because of the economy, some donors no longer have the funds to keep giving to Capitol Studies, but God has continued to meet our needs. This past year new donors joined hands with us by giving through Give to Lincoln Day. Some new individuals and churches also began supporting us. This has been such a blessing!

Bible Study during the 2022 Legislative Session

Capitol Bible Studies

Earlier in the year, we studied the life of Nehemiah and then reviewed the Biblical foundation of America. Soon I will finish the fall series entitled Select Psalms for Civil Servants with the staff members. These Psalms have engendered good discussion on topics like The Godly Man/Woman, The Wicked Man/Woman, The Value of God’s Word, What to Do When You Are Depressed, and How to Find Rest When You Are Slandered. One other hot topic that has been on the lips of most in the Capitol has been the Nebraska election. Our weekly staff Bible study fell the day after votes were cast. Of the twenty-two in attendance, some were happy, some hopeful, some discouraged, some hurt, and some angry. It was a fitting time to remind each other that God is sovereign. He is still on His throne. He is working all things together for His glory and our good. He cares for His child no matter who is in leadership. Throughout the Bible God used ungodly leaders, as well as godly leaders, to work His perfect will.

Arin & Anne Marie Hess with children and grandchildren

Christmas Wishes

When our children were very young, we memorized Luke 2:1-20 as a family. Throughout the years we have quoted that passage together each Christmas. Now our children are grown, and we are working with our grandchildren on Luke 2. Unfortunately, the true story of Christmas is often lost in our world today. Even Linus in Charlie Brown’s Christmas recognized that. May I encourage you to read Luke 2 with your family or friends this Christmas season? As you do, remind yourself that Jesus was born so He could rescue you and me from our sin’s punishment—an awful place called hell. It was made for the Devil and his fallen angels, but because of our sin, we are all condemned to go there. But God… “But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Jesus died in our place, to rescue us. He died to give us eternal life. That’s why Jesus came.
Have you asked Jesus to be your Rescuer, your Savior? “For whoever will call upon the name of the LORD will be saved” (Romans 10:13). That’s the hope of Christmas! We are praying that you have the hope of Christmas in your heart. Jesus IS the reason for the season!

Wishing you a blessed Christmas and a joy-filled New Year!

Striving together for Him,
Arin Hess, Chaplain and President
Capitol Studies
Email: arin@capitolstudies.org
Phone: 402-770-6270

I shall speak Thy testimonies before kings, and shall not be ashamed!
Psalm 119:46

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Capitol Studies, 4547 Calvert Street, Suite 5, Lincoln, NE 68506

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