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4/13/20 Weekly Update from Pastor Dave
April 13, 2020, 1:00 PM

***As a reminder, this is the same letter that I mail out to each of our members who do not use social media or the internet. This is an update for the whole church. Please take the time to read this. ***

 

4/13/20

 

Dear Church,

 

This last Sunday was unique. Coming to a church that was completely empty on the day when we celebrate the resurrection of Our Lord was a first. With that said, I was not discouraged nor am I discouraged. I was reminded of the hope that I have in Christ Jesus. Preaching from Luke 24: 1 - 12 was a blessing. While I was preaching to a room with one person in it (John, my son, who was running sound), I still was glad to declare the Christ indeed did die, Christ indeed did rise, and Christ indeed has victory over sin.

 

It has been a pleasure over the last few weeks to call many of you on the phone and pray with you in that manner. I should have done a better job of this before the pandemic occurred. I love getting to visit with each of you on the phone. I love getting to hear how I can pray for you more effectively. Don't hesitate to call me if you have not heard from me. I am doing my best to get calls out to as many of you as I can weekly. Even when I am not able to answer the phone, I still enjoy hearing a voice message from you.

 

 I wish that I had more of an update on how long it looks like we are going to be in this “stay at home situation.” It appears from some signs that things are getting better, but I'm not sure what it will look like to get back to a normal situation. I personally am reminded again and again that Christ knows the future because he decreed it. My hope is that you are using this time away from worship to reflect on how great of a privilege it is to gather with God's people on the Lord's Day. I miss getting to be with you all. I miss my Sunday school class and singing songs with my church.

 

 I've continued to teach my Sunday school class on Sunday nights at 6 p.m. through Zoom meetings. We have had very good attendance. I believe the participation has been quite effective. If you would like to be involved in that class, please let me know. I'll be glad to send you an invite so that you can join us as we discuss the doctrine of God's word. I also invite you to let me know of any individuals you know I need to be talking to and praying with over the phone. Don't hesitate to call me or text me with prayer requests, so I can get them on the prayer chain. Because our church website has been such an effective tool for getting out information, I want to make sure that we're continuing to make the most of it.

 

There are a few updates I want to make you aware of. Travis Horinek has begun teaching a brief study on Sunday nights at 4:45 p.m. It lasts 15 minutes, and it is a discussion of the topic "Christ is Enough." He posts it to the church Facebook page each week. I join him in teaching through the content. Feel free to join us for the discussion live or you can watch it by accessing it on YouTube or on the church website. For those who do not have access to the internet, please call me or contact me if you would like a CD copy of Travis’ class. 

 

As another reminder, every Sunday the sermon notes are posted to our church website. You can follow along on the slides and fill in the blanks on the sermon notes if you would like. At the end of those notes, there is a discussion guide. I encourage everyone to use that discussion guide to discuss the content of the sermon with your family. That content is also very useful if you would like to connect with others in some type of community group or small group Bible study through a zoom meeting. Travis has also agreed to help organize any Zoom Bible studies with people from our church who would like to participate. 

 

I have been teaching my Sunday school class on Sunday nights at 6 p.m. if you would like to join that class as we meet on Zoom meeting, let me know and I will send you an invite.

 I also want to encourage you to be sure to give me feedback on sermons and on Bible studies. It's a little hard to know if people are reading the letters that I am sending if I don't hear back from anyone. It is also hard for me to know exactly how my sermons are going and being received when I don't hear or get feedback from the church. Feel free to give me that feedback. 

 

Finally, I've included in this note a brief  Survey. This is similar to the survey from a few years ago when I was looking for sermon topics that the church wanted me to preach on. Please answer these four questions and send them back to me. You can email your answers to me. You can call me with your answers. You can snail mail your answers. You can leave your answers on the Church website in the comments section.  Or you can send me your answers through Facebook Messenger. I'm excited to hear about the topics you would like for me to be preaching on in the coming months.

 

I hope that each of you has been engaged to by deacon's and by Sunday school teachers.  If not, please let me know so I can get you connected with a deacon or Sunday school teacher. I want you to know that I'm praying for you as a church daily. I struggle sometimes to get everyone prayed for as specifically as I would like, but don't ever hesitate to let me know how I can specifically pray for you throughout the day. Send me a text message, an email, a phone call, or even a note. I will stop right away and pray for you. 

 

Church, this has been a difficult season. I don't know if we are at the end of it. I don't know how long it will last. I want to thank you for being so faithful to give, to pray, and to encourage one another. I'm thankful that so many of you have mailed in your tithe the checks to the church or given online. I know this is a difficult time for many financially, but I'm thankful for your love for the work that God is doing in Buffalo. While a great deal of my time has been spent trying to send emails, make phone calls, write letters, and even send CDs, there is still ministry going on in the state of Missouri, in the United States, and across the globe to proclaim the gospel. Your faithfulness to give during this time is blessing those ministries. Thank you for being a giving and generous church. I'm grateful to pastor each and every one of you. 

 

Soli Deo Gloria,

 

Dave Van Bebber