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Weekly Update - June 12

Sunday was more than encouraging, it was renewing. For those who attended, I pray your hearts were full of praise and gratitude.

Sunday, June 14, we will meet again similarly to last Sunday. As we do, please remember the following:

  • We have one service at 10:30 am. You do not need to sign up in advance to attend and we are open to any and all who desire to come.
  • Doors will open at 10:00 am. Please assist us by not entering the facility before 10:00 am so as to ensure that our children’s area is prepared and that ushers, greeters, and those who have responsibilities in the service can all be in present and in place before 10:00 am.
  • Childcare for children 0-2 years old will be provided. Parents, please use the check-in station in the children’s hallway and then enter the sanctuary across from the Nursery Station after taking your children to their room. If a child has any illness or fever, we will not be able to provide childcare for them during the service.
  • At present our capacity in the Sanctuary is limited. When you arrive, please find a place to sit and place a Bible or your belongings on the pew to mark your spot. Once we have reached capacity in the Sanctuary, we will direct those who attend to the Fellowship Hall to participate through the livestream. Song sheets will be provided for those in Fellowship Hall.
  • Feel free to utilize the Fellowship Hall if you have a need or concern for greater distancing.
  • If you are sick (with any symptoms, even those you suspect to be seasonal), please delay your return.
  • We will provide a livestream (10:30 am) of the service on our website or through Facebook. Video (with captioning) and audio of the sermon will be provided Sunday afternoon.

Yesterday, Governor Parsons announced that beginning Tuesday, June 16, all statewide restrictions will be lifted. We rejoice with this latest news. However, that does still mean that as of Sunday, June 14, our county remains under the Phase 2 reopening plan. The Governor has also indicated that local authorities still have the ability to regulate restrictions based on health concerns in their respective areas. That means we continue under Jackson County’s current reopening plan. Nonetheless, the light at the end of the tunnel is clearly visible.

As we anticipate our second Sunday back together, I want to remind us of a few important matters – both under one heading: Keep Christ’s Testimony Central.

Within our Restrictions, Keep Christ’s Testimony Central

Our area remains under a state of emergency that allows us to meet, but only so long as we maintain appropriate physical distancing. As we become more accustomed to meeting together again, please seek to maintain a six foot distance between you and others not in your family whether in seating or conversation. Regardless of your convictions about the virus, we remain in a period where it is necessary to pay attention to the conditions our county has asked us to maintain.

We also continue to ask you to refrain from physical contact in greeting one another as we gather during this present phase of our community’s reopening plan.

Within our Concerns, Keep Christ’s Testimony Central

While it is appropriate to honor our local governing authorities as they have requested our compliance with physical distancing, we also want to honor our ultimate authority, Jesus Christ, and His word in our responses to the virus. Be careful that you are not allowing sinful fear keep you from appropriate fellowship and worship.

Fear becomes sinful when the thought of preserving yourself exceeds the thought of obeying God. When the fear of hypothetical situations becomes more controlling of your thoughts and behavior than your revere of and confidence in God himself, sinful fear has likely gripped you.

Rational means of protection from a virus may be warranted by medical or physical conditions, or even necessitated by governing officials during a season like the present. But internal fear of risks that keep you from maintaining a faithful trust in the goodness of God’s sovereignty over your life may lead you to unfaithfulness. Sinful fear may be difficult to discern at times and we may need counsel and wisdom from others about how we are processing our concerns. But fear is never what governs the Christ-controlled heart. Confidence in his sovereign control over all things does.

As you prayerfully navigate your responses, centralize the testimony of Christ and the gospel above your freedoms and even above your fears.

We look forward to seeing you on Sunday!