We have seen a slow progression over the past several months toward “normal” in our church life. I do not like the media’s use of the term, “new normal.” This term implies that this is simply the way it is going to be and we might as well get used to it. I believe we are slowly moving back toward normal church ministry and activities. We are just doing these things with a few modifications. When the time of risk has passed we will be able to remove those modifications. Those include, mask wearing, the minimization of physical contact, and the need to create distancing by having multiple services. I do not consider those modifications to be “normative,” but they are certainly appropriate for the time being. I cannot wait until hugging, handshaking, and the gathering of the entire church body will be part of our normal routine once again.
I am so thankful for the renewal of certain practices within the church as the restrictions and risks have begun to lessen. It was a blessing to meet with our JOY group this past month. We are praying that will be able to continue. As I write this newsletter article, I am looking forward to our first brotherhood men’s prayer breakfast. Please pray with me for our men’s ministry to grow and our men to be encouraged to disciple, encourage and serve across generations. All of these things are being done with certain precautions in place, but we are so thankful to feel the freedom to fellowship in these and other ways once again.
Pray for your church. We are continuing to move through our church membership reconciliation plan. Pray those who have received letters will see our sincere desire to have them worshipping and growing with us once again. Pray for the reconciliation task force as we move into the next phase of calling and visiting those who have been absent for a long time. Pray for good visits and the Holy Spirit to work.
Pray for our state. There were 39 Southern Baptist churches that were left uninhabitable after hurricane Laura. This will be a slow recovery for southwest Louisiana’s residents. There will be so many opportunities for ministry and sharing the Gospel.
Pray for our nation. We are a nation divided and broken in so many ways. Pray for our leaders and our election coming up in November, but please pray for a spiritual awakening, a revival. Pray God’s people would renew their commitment to being set apart people who are not of this world. Pray we will renew our commitment to live and share the Gospel. Only God can turn back the tide of secularism, falsehood, and evil that is so prevalent today.
“First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.” 1 Timothy 2:1-2, CSB