We’re back with episode 2! We are really excited about this episode. We had the opportunity to interview Mark Smith. Mark Smith serves as the senior consultant for Family Evangelism and Discipleship at the BSCNC. His passion is helping families create a disciple-making culture in their homes through God’s Word and the local church. Prior to joining the Convention, Mark served in student and family ministry for over 20 years. He is the author of Parental Guidance Suggested, Home Sweet Dysfunctional Home, Proactive Parenting and Faith At Home. We also talk briefly about things we binge watch during the time at home. What are some of your favorite shows/movies?
This is the first podcast from City Park Church! In this episode we talk about some great resources to help you disciple your family and love your neighbors. We also talk about our favorite bands and some book recommendations. We had a fun time recording this and look forward to many more episodes. Share your favorite bands and songs with us!Thank you to Matt Speaks for allowing us to use his music for this episode.
In light of everything that has happened over the last several days with the Coronavirus, we have decided at City Park Church to cancel meeting in person for our upcoming services until the appropriate time is for our church and community. We are not putting a date on when services in person will resume because we truly do not know the date we believe will be safe for us to return to services at this time.
We believe the Bible when it says that we should not forsake the gathering of believers and we believe we can accomplish this in a new way with the technology that we have been blessed with. This is not a decision that was made quickly, but instead has been prayed for and we have asked questions to health professionals of the right steps to take. Health issues are not our expertise and we believe that we should seek and take the advice of those professionals. Our plan moving forward is as follows:
Gatherings at the church are cancelled until the appropriate time is to return. We will have streamed services until we are able to meet again in person and encourage you to gather online with us in worship.
Launch Sunday was scheduled for April 5th. Although it seems very unlikely that we will be able to gather at that point, we are still planning for that day. If we are unable to meet at that time, we will continue to trust that the Lord and that He has a plan in all of this, and launch the first Sunday that we can.
Groups will continue to meet during this time if they follow the recommended groups size of 10 or less. If you feel comfortable, we encourage you to continue to gather in these groups. Groups meeting in person at this time are optional and if you feel uncomfortable attending, we will have the ability for you to attend virtually.
By next week, we will have a plan together for Community Groups to be able to meet together online. Each leader will be trained and equipped to the plan laid out and our Communications Team available to help those with questions.
We will have several podcasts coming to you with resources and conversations with experts in different areas of life.
If you have certain topics you would like us to address on these episodes, please send those to us. We are very excited about this new opportunity!
We still want to be available for our community to help meet needs during this time. Here are a few ministries you can help with:
Sunnyside Ministry – Donate food for the needy.
City Lights Ministry – Donate food for children
Diggs-Latham – They are need of printer paper
There are a lot of ways we can minister in our own neighborhoods at this time as well. Maybe you have elderly and/or immunocompromised neighbors that might need help with groceries or necessities during this time. There are a lot of people very fearful and scared of what is going on around them and in need of encouragement and maybe even a helping hand in this time or someone to pray with them. God really uses these times to work in peoples hearts to draw them to Him.
In our time in the Word together Sunday we read Romans 8: 18-25 beginning in verses 18-19 “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.” Our current sufferings can seem to be mounting on us and changing day by day but they are continuing to point us to our homes. Suffering makes us look towards the future we have in Jesus as it says there in verses 18-19 the glory that is to be revealed and creations waits with eager longing for the revealing just as we wait with eager longing to be together again in person, we are incredibly blessed with the ability to gather together online and utilize the blessing of technology. We will continue to trust in the Lord and His goodness and His Sovereignty as the days continue to unfold and as Nahum 1:7 says “The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; He knows those who take refuge in Him.”
Over the last week, I have continued to monitor the situation across our country, state, and county. This has been a fluid situation where we are learning new things each day. At this time, after talking to the deacons, volunteers, and listening to the advisement of our government leaders we have decided that the best thing to do is to cancel service tomorrow night.
This was a very difficult decision to make but we have made this decision for a few reasons.
As believers, we believe that the rulers have been placed there by the Lord. Our leaders are advising for groups of 100 to not gather. We don’t meet that level but many counties have come out and said groups of 50. With confirmed cases in Forsyth, we believe this a good standard for us. We want to listen and respect those that God has put in charge of us. I believe it would be a poor witness for us in our community if we just ignore it and proceed with the service.
We want to be good neighbors! We want to make sure our neighbors know we care. We don’t want to potentially bring something into the neighborhood that could be prevented.
As the leader, I have to think of not just myself but all of us. I’m almost 99% sure that nothing would happen if we met, but if something did happen, I would not be able to live with it. Your safety is a huge concern of mine and I want you to know that we value it! I’d rather be safe than sorry in a circumstance like this.
Our response is not to do nothing tomorrow but I am going to record a message tonight to send to you tomorrow. We will also include a prayer guide for you tomorrow. Tomorrow is a National Day of Prayer and we have plans to pray! We will give you a step by step guide to lead your family in prayer.
This has been an extremely weird and difficult few days of trying to figure out what the right thing to do is. We trust in the Lord and know He is in control.
As this week progresses we will gather more information and will give an updated status about next week.
I love you all and look forward to gathering again soon.