As you all probably know by now, Valley Community Church will not be meeting for at least two weeks. Our governing authorities have mandated that groups of our size not meet so that the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) can be contained. We the pastors of VCC wanted to email you and encourage you in the Lord as well as inform you in what the church will be doing going forward.
Although Hebrews 10:23-25 reminds us of the beauty of meeting together as well as commanding that we do meet together as Christians, we feel as though temporarily suspending our gatherings is in no way opposing or neglecting this commandment from God. We feel the need to avoid carelessness. We do not want to be unwise in the stewardship of our own lives or fail to love our neighbors by putting them at unnecessary risk if we were to continue to meet even in smaller groups. Rather, as good neighbors, we want to do our part in mitigating against the spread of this disease in our community. And as your pastors, we feel a special stewardship in protecting the members of the church as shepherds. We love you, and we want you to be safe.
We may not be able to congregate together physically at this time, but this will not stop us from connecting with each other regularly, nor will it prevent us from worshiping together on Sunday mornings.
For the next two weeks and as long as needed we will have an order of service on the website ready for you on Sunday mornings. Our hope in this is that we will be worshiping with each other from our homes. As you go to the home page on Sunday morning, here is what you will find as an order of service:
-Written prayer for you to reflect upon
-Scripture reading that relates to the text of the sermon
-Songs with links for you to sing. We encourage you to click on the links and listen and sing along with the words on the screen.
-A sermon from our continued journey in the book of Colossians.
We strongly encourage you to be ready for corporate worship on Sunday mornings and for us all to log on and go to the website and partake in worship through prayer, Scripture reading, song, and a message from God's Word.
What you can do!
I. We encourage you to not let our current physical distance from one another hinder our privilege and responsibility to love one another in Christ. Pray for one another diligently. Pray for those who have been affected by this virus. Pray for our medical workers and hospital staff. Pray for our governing authorities. Pray that this would provide many gospel opportunities with those around you and around the world. Pray that our country and our world would turn to Jesus for hope and that thousands, if not millions would respond to the gospel message in repentance and faith.
II. Reach out to your fellow church members. Call each other regularly and encourage one another in the Lord. It can be very easy to be consumed by fear and anxiety as we are bombarded with news feeds and opinion columns. This is a very real threat and dangerous virus, but it is no surprise to our Lord and it is under His sovereign hand. Remind one another of the beauty and truth of the gospel and eternal life. Comfort each other with the Word of God and the truth of the hope that we have in Jesus Christ.
III. Reach out to your neighbors and other people in your life. Be ready in this season to give an account for the hope that you have. Proclaim to them through your message and your life the hope that you have even in the face of a global pandemic. Show them and tell them that there is nothing to fear if you have Christ Jesus as your Lord and Savior.
What a joy to know that even though a pandemic is engulfing almost the whole earth, we have a God who is a rock and a refuge no matter what comes!
Listen to what the Psalmist tells us in Psalm 62. "My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. He is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be shaken. On God my salvation and my glory rest; the rock of my strength and my refuge is in God. Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us." Psalm 62:5-8
God is your refuge dear Christian! Never waver from the hope of the gospel! Praise the Lord that He has already gained the victory over sin, disease, sickness, and even death. Praise God that we do not have to live in fear of what the next moment holds, because our great and mighty God holds eternity in the palm of His hand.
Please know that your pastors are praying for you and will be contacting you regularly to check in. We again encourage you to reach out at any time if there is anything you need whether that is prayer, food, or just to simply communicate what the Lord has been doing in your life.
The Pastors of VCC