I wanted to give both a personal and church update in light of the events of this past week and the extending of regional health orders that impact how we can gather. First, a personal update. As you may have heard, I was driving down to Vancouver on Sunday when the atmospheric river came through, and ended up, after a long day, stranded in Hope where there was no power and no way through. We were very fortunate to have family there who could take Zach and I in for what we thought would just be the night. After 3 days there, we were able to get out Wednesday evening with the limited opening of Hwy 7 West from Hope to Agassiz and get as far as Port Coquitlam.
During this unusual few days, I was left to consider both the wonderful resilience and character of people who step up and serve one another as well as the abundant provision and generosity of our God.I spent some time journaling and praying about the many ways God had protected and directed us on our journey and had provided all that we had needed. I also gave thanks for the wonderful people all around us who were giving so generously of what they had, regardless of the fact that they too were cut off from supply lines from Vancouver and would be eating into their own reserves as well. While in Hope, we heard stories of motorists who were giving others spare tires in order to help them get down Hwy 3 to Hope; we were offered free food and a ride while walking on the street one evening; we encountered many caring and generous staff at stores and cafes, some of which were giving away food and hot drinks for free to those who were stranded. It really was a testimony of what can happen when people pull together in a crisis to support one another.
And that is the resilience and generosity that I have seen in our church family through this whole season of Covid, where many have been stepping up to care for one another through relationship, helping assist with practical needs, and looking out for one another. As we continue to walk through this season, our board and pastoral team have been talking about how we can best make it through, and we will be talking about that more on Nov 28. But in the meantime, we also have heard that the restrictions for Northern Health have been extended, and so we are continuing to be limited to online worship services & online life groups.
Having said that, there are some things we want to encourage you to consider as we continue in this time of limited interaction:
As much as it may not seem ideal, still choose to be part of our Sunday online worship services, and participate as an expression of worship to God, even if it feels a bit weird to do that in front of your TV or laptop or other device and whether you’re on your own or with your family or others.
Pay attention to who comes to mind day to day and choose to pray for those people and reach out to them via phone or text to check in. Maybe ask if there is a way you be praying for them.
Keep your eyes open for needs in our church community and in your neighbourhood that you could help meet. With some of the supply limitations these days, be aware of who you can help support.
Also, be aware that Individual prayer space at the church is still available upon request, so if you’d like some personal time to spend with the Lord in the sanctuary, let us know and we can try to arrange something.
Church, I am so encouraged by many of the stories I get to hear of how you’re caring for one another. Although the restrictions on our gathering are continuing, let’s find creative ways to be living in community even in these days so that our neighbours would see our love for one another and see in us the character of Jesus.
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4001 5th Avenue
Prince George, BC