Note from Tim 2020-06-12

A few things to communicate again this week. First of all, yes, we are on for physically gathering as a church family together on this Sunday for the first time since March 8! I am dazed with the challenges of leading through the range and pace of events that have erupted through these 3 months. Not one of us escapes the tests and adjustments of this season. And so, it will be refreshing to sing and worship our faithful Lord, Savior, and Rock, and to just see and be with our church family. The phase-in and worship teams have been diligently working to organize and plan for this outdoor gathering so that we can do so with good confidence in its safety for everyone. We ask that you please bring your own chairs. For added safety, you will be able to stay in your vehicle if you choose, and if helpful, listen on your radio. The forecast calls for a beautiful morning and a letter with the details about how we can safely gather will be sent tomorrow (Saturday).
 
Getting back to corporate worship will be a process as some perhaps should not come for their own or others’ safety. And some will not consider it to be safe yet. So, we will indefinitely provide a video for online worship in addition to our in-person gatherings. For this and perhaps next weekend, this means that we will separately record a service in the sanctuary. Thereafter, we hope to provide a quality live-stream of our service—out or indoors—and then make that available online for later viewing as well. Note as well that beginning this Sunday, we will suspend the Zoom sermon discussion and fellowship.
 
The response from last week’s sermon revealed how God’s Spirit worked to deeply challenge, convict, encourage, and spur us toward action. And as I noted in the sermon, below are some resources to help equip you to better understand and be a part of “justice for all.” I also noted that we had already been forming a community impact team as part of pursuing our Vision 2028. One focus of this team will be to identify/address a significant need in our community. I am often encouraged as I learn about the different ways that we are already sacrificing self toward shalom. But we are exploring and will be sharing various other ways to roll up our sleeves in our community. As I spoke with the North Kent Connect staff, it was noted that they could use someone with counseling skills, people to lead a class for teaching various skills, and volunteers to assist with their garden. All of these efforts are also opportunities for connection and relationship. Call NKC to explore and dig in.
 
This Sunday’s sermon (Isaiah 55) serves as a follow-up to last week’s sermon. I look forward to sharing it with you. Next Sunday, Pastor James Karsten will preach and that will allow me to take a breath for a few days, catch up with some work and focus on some sermon planning.
 
The resources below are not presented in any particular order, represent a few varying perspectives, and can be helpful for pushing out with justice for all. I will highlight “Just Mercy” as one helpful movie that I had referred to in another sermon several months ago. It is being offered as a free rental through various platforms through the month of June.
 
I am really excited to see and worship with many of you on Sunday morning. Pray for God’s Word to go out powerfully to change hearts and lives through our online and in-person worship. There are many more moving parts and work relating to worship these days and so pray for Mike Fisk, Dan VanStensel, Jim Scholten, Laura, the phase-in team, and the worship teams (and tell them thanks) so that all of the details will come together. It’s all for our Savior and King’s glory!
 
Pastor Tim