To God’s Beloved At Cloverdale Baptist Church:
This week we celebrate the greatest week in HISTORY, and if we know and have experienced the love of Jesus the greatest week in terms of impact, of our individual lives. It is our prayer that this week will change your life!
Sad: Yesterday we got the news that the PHO has added further restrictions in our province. These include the fact that we will not be able to gather in our building for Good Friday, or Resurrection Sunday. We will still have services online, but this is, for me, devastating news.
So how do we respond to disappointing news? Whether it is this (for some of you this was not as disappointing as it was for me), or something else or someone else, how do we respond when what we want is different than what we get? I think it is for all of us an opportunity to show that an authentic relationship with Jesus changes how we think, feel, and respond to disappointments. I believe there are four ways to respond to disappointments that display the beauty of the Gospel that can help all of us at such a time as this.
This is a call for us to trust in God’s Sovereignty, Goodness, & Love. God is over all things, and He in His Sovereignty is working out everything according to the purpose of His will (Ephesians 1:11; Romans 8:28-29). This means that no matter what is happening we can trust God, and even as we hurt inside and deal with difficulties we can rest in His POWER. Not only that, we can rest in His GOODNESS. He knows me, and His plan for me is ALL WISE, and as such it is good. He knows every possible possibility (middle knowledge) and whether it is Nero, or Horgan, we can trust that He has the good of His people and the glory of His name at work. And perhaps most precious, He is LOVE. Romans 8:32 powerfully says that His love for us is demonstrated in the Gospel, and that love declares that He will make sure that we will be recipients of His grace in every circumstance we are walking through. You can REST if you believe in the God of the Bible!
Rest is displayed in the peace we have that transcends understanding (Philippians 4:4-6), and the passion we have to display the beauty of the Gospel, and God’s grace, not our own inconveniences.
Are you experiencing rest in these disappointing days?
One of the greatest threats to our spiritual health is distractions. If we fix our eyes on Jesus (Colossians 3; Hebrews 12:1-3) we will discover the power of conformity to His image. Our goal is to live a life that is driven and defined by our relationship with Jesus, and if our disappointments distract us from this, we can easily lose heart and give up.
So, take the time today to fix your eyes on Jesus, to preach the Gospel to yourself, to remind yourself of His great love and beauty, and how precious you are to Him. Reflect on 1 Corinthians 15, and remember that verse 58 is founded on all that has come before it.
If you find yourself more focused on the pandemic, or the PHO, STOP….and REFOCUS!
Where are you spending your time, what are your lips talking about, and how can you make sure that your heart is taken with Jesus, not the world and your lips are talking about the Gospel and not the GRUMPS?
Someone asked me today if I was looking forward to getting back to normal, and my answer is NO…I want so much more than that. My longing is for us as a church to be filled with a first love devotion to God that overwhelms us, and shapes us so that we are loving God’s people, and reaching out with the Gospel to those in our sphere of influence. Where every person in our family loves God so deeply that the overflow of that love is a love for one another (1 Peter 4:11) and a life on mission for God and the Gospel (1 Corinthians 5:11-21).
This time is a great reminder to us that what God wants for us and from us is so much more than simply gathering again, it is gathering to grow, scattering to Gospel ministry, and if we remind ourselves of this, when this time is over we can be even more healthy than we were before.
The key to this is FIRST LOVE devotion to Jesus that drives and defines everything else.
Will you use our communion service this coming Sunday to RENEW your first love devotion to God? Will you repent where you have allowed the world, flesh, devil, and even good things to crowd out this love, and seek to live your life as an overflow of your LOVE for God at all times in every circumstance?
Yes, for that is what God’s Word calls us to if we are a people who are walking by faith (Philippians 4:4).
Rejoice in His greatness!
Rejoice in His Gospel!
Rejoice in His Love!
Rejoice in His People!
Rejoice in His Power!
Rejoice in opportunities to share His GOSPEL with those in your sphere of influence!
Rejoice that we can trust Him always and He is involved in all of life not only as creator, but as sustainer, not only as sustainer, but as care giver…He is REAL and REJOICING is the overflow of seeing Him for who He is...ALWAYS and IN EVERYTHING!
So, today, will you choose to believe that God exists, and rewards those who seek Him. Will you REST, REFOCUS, RENEW and REJOICE so that together we can find a unity and a passion on mission for His glory, and be more and more the church He wants us to be! I AM IN, will you join me? This week is the greatest week in history, and we will be called to remember it together and together (online) serve the LIVING RESURRECTED KING. Wouldn’t it be amazing if God’s Spirit brought a revival to us through this difficulty that we might be those who are driven and defined by our relationship with Him, and our impact of love for one another and evangelism in the community would reverberate for eternity.
COUNT ME IN!
Okay, if you are still reading…there is much to report.
Good Friday Service
Online: 10:00 am. Join us as we reflect on the greatness of the sacrifice of our Savior
Drive through breakfast: 9:15-10:00. Join us for limited fellowship, great food, and a chance to focus on Jesus.
10:30 online service:
Please prepare for communion, as we will be celebrating at the LORD'S TABLE together. Have fruit of the vine and bread ready to sharpen your mind and be fed spiritually as we celebrate this symbol and the depth of it's meaning together!
Title: The Life Giving King
Text: John 11
- Why is the resurrection so all defining for followers of Jesus?
- How can we allow the reality of the resurrection to shape our lives?
- Who is someone you can share this Gospel with this week?
Encourage you, if you are not in the vulnerable population to gather outside in pods of 10, and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. Ideally, listen to the service and praise God together, but if you can’t due to technology, gather and sing, listen to a recorded service, and use this opportunity to be creative in your building up of one another and praising His name. Make our Resurrection Sunday a walk in the park with other believers praising God’s name, and maybe, just maybe, God will bring someone across your path that you can share His greatness with while you do this. If you do this, send me an email and let me know how it went so we can reverberate with praise on how God used us in difficult times to display the beauty of His love for us, in an inconvenient but creative manner. TAKE A WALK IN THE PARK!
Other Helpful Information
I love that we are a group of people who are committed to our covenant as members. We are adding a few members during this time, and Lance and Marina Franson, Sheldon and Beryl Schultz and Lynn Morin have been through the course, interviewed by the elders, and signed the covenant to join Jesus family at CBC in this committed way. We publish their names so that you have an opportunity to welcome them if you know the into our community, and also if you have any concerns you can let an elder know.
please check out our online bulletin that is updated every week: Keep Informed
Please help our search committee as they look for the man of God that will help us exalt His name in song and deepen our love for Him as we celebrate His greatness together. We long for God's man for the ministry, and would like this to be sooner than later (our timing), so please pray, and help us to pursue this patiently and in God's POWER! If you know of anyone...please share with them this amazing opportunity and have them apply!
Kids ministry is seeking to serve you, and help in discipling our children and families even though we are not gathering physically. Please take advantage of this, and continue to make church a priority that your children can see and taste!
Thanks all for staying informed, and for being a family who has a positive impact for God's glory and the good of His church in the world He has sovereignly placed us.
It is a joy to serve the RESURRECTED KING, by serving you...