Dear Friends at Coulee Rock,
We hope that you are staying encouraged in our Lord Jesus whatever are your current circumstances. It is difficult without the Holy Spirit’s help but we do have the Spirit residing within us. We and everyone in the world are presently experiencing change and uncertainty about the future that is unprecedented in our lifetimes. I had a Skype call to several men in Germany this morning and they are working from home and required to not go out except to shop for food. Churches are forbidden to gather by law.
This Sunday, March 22nd we will not be meeting for a service.
One of the great blessings of the church is the support and encouragement of fellow members. That is particularly challenging in this present crisis. Due to the contagious nature of this world -wide virus, we are having to isolate ourselves from each other which leaves us feeling alone and at times fearful. As you know and we have taught for years, the church is not a building but the people. Wherever we gather, there is the church. However, we are not able to gather in person.
Hebrews 10:24-25 (ESV)
“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
Since we are not able to gather in person, the pastors are seeking alternate ways for us to connect with each other without having to meet in person. We are discussing and brain-storming ways in which to make these connections. Fortunately, we have the internet which in years past was not available as a communication tool.
Here are some of ideas to this point:
· A regular or daily email from the pastors to our church email list.
· A weekly video-taped teaching sermon. We did our first attempt at this last Sunday when we recorded Peter’s message. This video is a large file and the first attempts at posting failed due to size restrictions. Pastor Peter is working on this problem.
· Live casting a weekly service. We currently do not have the technology to do this but it is being checked into.
· Zoom small group meetings. Zoom is an app that has particular potential for us to join others in video meetings whether for small groups or possibly weekly messages. The challenge is that everyone has to download this app and be familiar with using it. But it is quite simple.
· Daily posting of Spurgeon’s Devotional – “Faith’s Checkbook”. See below where I thought yesterdays was appropriate for our situation. I have found these thoughts to be particularly encouraging.
· Phone calls to build each other up. I have heard that many of you are already doing this.
We would welcome your input and ideas into ways we can connect as a church body. Also, if you know anyone who has been coming to our services but is not on the phone list, we would like their email address so that we can reach out to them as well. Please contact Colleen so that we can add them to our communication list. Ctoltzman@couleerock.com
Pastor Dave for the CR Pastors
March 17 Fear to Fear
"Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the Lord." Jer. 1:8
Whenever fear comes in and makes us falter, we are in danger of falling into sin. Conceit is to be dreaded, but so is cowardice. "Dare to be a Daniel." Our great Captain should be served by brave soldiers.
What a reason for bravery is here! God is with those who are with Him. God will never be away when the hour of struggle comes. Do they threaten you? Who are you that you should be afraid of a man that shall die? Will you lose your situation? Your God whom you serve will find bread and water for His servants. Can you not trust Him? Do they pour ridicule upon you? Will this break your bones or your heart? Bear it for Christ's sake, and even rejoice because of it.
God is with the true, the just, the holy, to deliver them; and He will deliver you. Remember how Daniel came out of the lions' den, and the three holy children out of the furnace. Yours is not so desperate a case as theirs; but if it were, the Lord would bear you through, and make you more than a conqueror. Fear to fear. Be afraid to be afraid. Your worst enemy is within your own bosom. Get to your knees and cry for help, and then rise up saying, "I will trust, and not be afraid." Faith's Checkbook. Charles Spurgeon