Prepare to Reopen!

 

Sunday, May 17 is only a few days away, and we are excited to worship our God with all of you in person! Our staff has been extremely busy with preparations, and now I ask that you would help us with these preparations.

 

First, and most importantly, let us endeavor to keep our unity! Our church has always shared such a wonderful koinonia (fellowship, love, unity), and we want to guard it. The current trials we are enduring have created divisiveness in our culture and the church in America. Many of us have differing views about our current politics, wearing masks, not wearing masks, COVID-19, Stay at Home, Open Now, etc. In preparation for your coming to fellowship this Sunday, prepare your heart and minds that you will keep Christ and His church the most important and essential focus. 

 

There is a beautiful exhortation Paul writes to the Ephesian churches that I believe is more applicable than ever for us. In context, Paul has just finished declaring the power of God to do abundantly more than we ask or think. He continues in the letter with the following, “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph. 4:1–3 NKJV).

 

Believers are to “walk worthy”. The word “worthy” is “axios” literally meaning equal weight as balanced scales. The believer is to have an equal balance between his/her confession and his/her conduct. In modern-day slang, we would say this kind of person is the “the real deal” or “not only talks the talk, but they also walk the walk.” Every Christian’s desire should be “to walk worthy”! 

 

So, how does a genuine believer act? How do we balance our confession and our conduct? Paul gives a wonderful list for us to consider. The genuine believer in the Lord is humble and gentle with others. The genuine believer bears other’s burdens and endures hardships for others. As we make these sacrifices for others, we make them unto Christ. Our lives become a wonderful act of worship that proves our confession true! The more you meditate on this list the more you will see Jesus enduring the cross for us! The genuine believer takes up his cross and follows his savior! 

 

The result of all this sacrifice is unity and peace. Paul writes, “…endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit…” The church in Ephesus is not trying to obtain unity in the Spirit, they already have it! The exhortation is to keep it! When we are born again, we experience unity and peace in the family of God almost immediately. We begin to lose it as we make our comfort the priority over our calling in Christ. The Church of Jesus was never intended to be comfortable; it was meant to be contagious! It is in our discomfort that we see God’s power on display! 

 

King David writes “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity!” (Psa. 133:1 NKJV) The unity of our fellowship is so good and pleasing to the Lord. Guard our unity against any divisive attitude. In his book, “The Treasury of David” Charles Spurgeon writes, “We can dispense with uniformity if we possess unity: oneness of life, truth, and way; oneness in Christ Jesus; oneness of object and spirit—these we must have, or our assemblies will be synagogues of contention rather than churches of Christ.”

 

Our church services will be different this Sunday. The services will be uncomfortable. They will be shortened to one hour for young families and sanitation time. The bathrooms will have limited use. We will sit in different seats than normal. We will wear masks. BUT, we will joyfully make ourselves uncomfortable for others. 

 

Every time in my life that I have made myself uncomfortable I have experienced the Lord in the most powerful and tremendous ways! Prepare to see God’s power poured out on our fellowship this Sunday!

 

God Bless you all!

Dave Johnson

 

FAQ About Church Reopen

Will you still live stream services?

Yes, we will Livestream all our services on Facebook and Youtube. We understand that some are not ready to attend services in person, and we will keep our streaming services available. 

 

Why do we need to RSVP for church?

You do not need to, but it will be very helpful. We have no idea how many people to expect per service, and we need to prepare for social distancing.

 

Do I need to RSVP every week?

No, just once is fine. 

 

Am I not obedient to God if I do not attend services in person?

Whether you choose to attend in person or not is between you and the Lord, and we support you. We encourage you to pray and check the CDC guidelines.

 

Are we opening church as a protest?

No. We are reopening our church to worship our God and have fellowship with one another. We believe that we can operate Sunday services safer than Costco, Home Depot, Stater Brothers, Walmart, and the like. Our worship has always been essential to us, and it is time to reopen.

No Time To Waste
These Doors Will Open