Dear Church Family,
Let me update you on our plans for gathering this Sunday, as well as, some recent pastoral meanderings.
1) Sunday’s gathering 3/21: First off, we’re going to have another cautious week at Cornerstone. There will be no Sunday School, Children’s Church, Nursery, or the taking of communion (this will allow masks to be worn throughout the service). Lord willing, this gives us greater freedom to worship March 28 and Resurrection Sunday. (Note: Though the gathering was very small on 3/14, one person present on Sunday later tested positive for Covid-19 [they were masked and socially distant].)
2) And now some meanderings… The more I speak to the body, the more I reflect on my own soul, the more I converse with other pastors, the more tempted I am to think this past year was a failure. How could a virus and one election cycle bring so much harm to people’s souls, individual churches, and one geopolitical nation? I like to think I’m optimistic and hopeful, so when this pandemic started in March 2020, I thought, “God will do great things.” I still believe God will bring about good, but I personally see little fruit (so far). The one word of consolation I have for myself and you today is “Jesus is still sufficient.”
All of the seeming discouragements of March 2020 to present invite pause. Jesus taught us that building on sand leads to destruction. Storms come and storms go, but that which is built on Christ and His Word will not fail. I believe God is revealing my own sandy hopes, vain hopes of deliverance. So what might be your and my response? We repent of false hopes. We grieve over broken dreams. We return to our first love. We wait on the LORD. We trust in our merciful Savior. As the song declarers: Should nothing of our efforts stand, No legacy survive, Unless the Lord does raise the house, In vain its builders strive, To you who boast tomorrow’s gain, Tell me what is your life, A mist that vanishes at dawn, All glory be to Christ!
One final word of hope today. Read Pastor Tim Keller’s recent article on facing death. If you didn’t know, Tim Keller was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He faces his death and invites us to do so as well in this article: https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/03/tim-keller-growing-my-faith-face-death/618219/
Lord willing, my quarantine ends Friday, and I join you in worship this Sunday. Thankfully those recently hit by Covid at Cornerstone all seem to be on the mend. Thank you for your prayers.
A recovering sinner with a sufficient Savior,