March 18, 2020
Dear RBC Family,
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your loved ones during these uncertain times. We are truly living in a season where we must trust Jesus one day at a time. In Matthew 6:31–34 Jesus said, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
With that in mind, let me assure you that I and the Ridgecrest staff are working and adjusting to changes weekly, daily and hourly as may be necessitated in order to continue ministry through worship, encouragement and prayer. Be praying for this Sunday that the Spirit of God will be on this place and His presence will be known to those watching by video. This is a first for me in ministry… preaching the Word of God to an empty auditorium. But I am reminded that the building is not the church… You are the church, praise God for the body of Christ.
While we are not meeting as a congregation on our campus until this crisis passes, let me encourage you to stay connected and informed through our website (www.rbcdothan.org) and our social media pages like Facebook. We will keep these sites updated with the most current information about our schedule, ministries, connections and future operations. Furthermore, through these sites, I will most likely be sharing a word of encouragement daily from the Scriptures.
As of this writing, our offices are still open. Should circumstances degrade further however, I have asked all of our staff to be prepared to continue working from home if necessary or should any of them experience any symptoms of the COVID-19 virus. We are all praying that that will not be required. In the absence of people on our campus, our support staff is working on many much-needed facilities projects, including extensive cleaning, and painting in areas long overdue, just to name a few. This past Monday, I met with our Deacons, Staff Committee and Financial leadership and presented to them a comprehensive strategy that we have implemented until the “storm” passes.
In the meantime, thank you for your willingness to adapt. Here are 3 things that you can do now and in the days that follow:
- On our website are posted specific ways you can do just that regarding this pandemic.
- Your financial gifts are as important as ever to enable our continuing ministry. In light of current events, I have asked our staff to discontinue any expenditures unless absolutely essential. I have already been asked by a number of people, “How do we give during this time?” There are three simple ways you can give, by mail, or you can stop by the office and bring your regular gifts, or you can text or give online at our church website mentioned above.
- Attend… How? By joining us through livestream, TV (WDHN and local cable network access on Thursdays & Saturdays, check your local listings), Facebook Live and a host of other video venues like YouTube TV (Ridgecrest Baptist Church), Roku, Apple TV and others.
In these three ways we can stay connected to one another as the family of God, connected to the work of God that continues, and connected to the mission of God through our Church. I look forward to the near future when we can all return to our campus and worship collectively. But until then, please join me each Sunday beginning at 9:45 on our website for a live worship service including music, prayer, information and a message from God’s Word. I’ll be continuing my series “The Last Days” this week with a message on Fear.
It is my prayer that this hour of trial will be our church’s finest hour. Keep your eyes upon our Savior, keep your knees bent in prayer and be faithful to our church family. And it is still true… God is always trying to take us someplace new. I love being your shepherd.
For God’s Glory Alone,