Good Afternoon GBC Family,
Most of us are aware of the growing pandemic known as the Coronavirus. It has most recently affected the opinions of many about public gatherings. Because of this, the state of California recently banned all public gatherings of over 250 people and many churches have consequently cancelled their services.
As for GBC, we desire to respect our government officials and be diligent in guarding against the spread of this virus. Since we do not fall into the category of being more than 250 congregants we are going to have services this Sunday with the following recommendations.
If you are sick, please stay home and plan to watch the sermon online
- Avoid touching your face
- The external doors will be kept open during service to promote airflow (please bring a sweater).
- Please wash your hands frequently
- Please do not shake hands, but rather wave or just say hi
- Avoid contact and have conversations that give ample personal space
- Please help by cleaning and disinfecting surfaces at the church
The elders of Grace want to encourage the church family to be diligent in personally guarding against this virus (especially those who are high risk for infection) and preventing it’s spread. We respect the decision of each family regarding your church attendance. If you choose not to attend services, please take advantage of the online sermon access. The elders are currently discussing implementing a live stream for those who stay home.
In addition, if you decide not to attend, please take advantage of the online giving program (click to give). The church appreciates your faithful giving and will need your continued financial support to stay on budget for the year.
As Christians, there are a few things that must be considered in times of world-wide panic. These events have a leveling effect on the world because we all face the same crisis. Consider the following as a Christian:
- Be submissive to the regulations of health officials (1 Peter 2:13)
- Be hopeful in the midst of crisis, this is what distinguishes believers (Philippians 2:14-15, 1 Thessalonians 4:13)
- Be prayerful for each other, your community, your country and the world (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
- Be evangelistic to those who need help and hope. This is a perfect opportunity to present a hopeless world with the hope of Jesus Christ. (Matthew 28:18-20)
This crisis can bring a culture and a people to their knees in despair. We need to be sure that we are available with a hopeful demeanor, a helpful attitude, and an eternal perspective. As much as this pandemic is horrific for mankind, it is not this temporary life that Christians are living for, we are dedicated and devoted to what is eternal. We can offer this same eternal hope to others. These are dark moments in which we can shine as lights and point others to Christ. (Matthew 5:14-16).
The elders of Grace love each one of you and we are praying for your safety, health, strength and witness in this world-wide pandemic. May we all say with Job, “The Lord gives, the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.”
Blessings in Christ,
John Prettyman, Michael Eastman, Ron Firstbrook
Elders of Grace Bible Church