Pastor’s Pen – January 27, 2021

Happy Wednesday! I hope each of you is having a good week and continues to stay safe during the pandemic. Today I would like to begin to examine our initiatives for 2021. In case you missed this a few weeks ago:

“Last month, a team met to discuss the opportunities and challenges before us in 2021. As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and the vaccine, we feel called to move forward in some specific areas.

Our five areas of focus for 2021 are:

  • Digital worship and engagement
  • Fresh Expressions of faith (Dinner Church)
  • Growing daily in Christ’s love
  • Children in our community
  • Opportunities to worship at home with neighbors”

Today I would like to focus on growing daily in Christ’s love. As followers of Jesus, we are reminded over and over in the Gospels that loving God and people is not optional or a nice goal. It is what we are called to do every day of our lives as we seek to become the persons God created us to be.

In pre-COVID times, we would gather in small groups or Sunday school classes. In today’s world, and most likely moving forward, there needs to be a digital component to everything we do as the church of Jesus Christ. We have been in conversation with a company that provides access to online, video based Christian studies, devotions, and other digital resources. Please take a look at this website:

https://www.rightnowmedia.org

We hope to get everything set up for our church next month. Individuals can access Bible studies and devotions, small groups can access topical studies and book studies, and there is even content for children, youth, and families. We will be able to share these resources with our MECE Preschool and Fresh Expressions, like Dinner Church!

In the past, a pastor would lead a weekly study at church or a teacher would lead a Sunday school class on Sunday morning. These digital resources will allow us the flexibility to gather online via Zoom, Go To Meeting, and Facebook, as well as grant us access to digital content with our smart phones and tablets when meeting in person.

The whole purpose of this technology is for us to have new resources to grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ in a daily basis. Sometimes our growth is individual and sometimes our growth is through a small group.

One of the greatest blessings in my life is a small group of men that I gather with in-person and online. I have been part of this group for over 25 years, and I can’t imagine doing life without the support of this group. Maybe you feel alone during the pandemic or desire to connect with a group? Our hope is that we become a church of small groups. Not simply a church that has a few small groups, but a church where people connect and grow in their relationship with God and people through small groups. If you would like to find a group, please email me and we will create a list of interested persons.

More information about this new digital offering will be available in February. I am excited that this will provide more individuals and small groups with digital resources to grow in the love of Jesus Christ.

In God’s Amazing Grace,

Marcus