Good Morning Church,
I hope this email finds you well and you are staying encouraged! Watching our church respond to this crisis has been so INSPIRING! I appreciate all the encouragement, the sacrificial love being displayed for each other, and the incredible generosity! I am so grateful to be a part of this family and long to be able to worship together again!!!
This Sunday, we are going to be starting a new series from the book of Psalms called Awake My Soul. Donald Whitney, a scholar and author, states that the Book of Psalms gives us "a song for every sigh of the soul". In this book of songs, it seems that the whole range of human emotions is displayed for us. This timely sermon series explores how in God, our souls are awakened to truth, beauty, and hope in a world full of suffering. I look forward to sharing what God has to say to us during these uncertain times!
Some weekly reminders and links:
Please let us know if there is anything you need or we can help serve you in any way. Please continue to be generous and missional with all the time and resources God has entrusted to you. I want to end with a verse from Psalm 3, “But You, O Lord, are a shield about me, My glory, and the One who lifts my head."
Love each of you very much!
I hope you are staying encouraged! Find ways to enjoy this time of rest, family time, and being home. Remember to social distance, stay home, and watch for the Saturday Update video! A link will be emailed out and it will also be available on our website by noon on Saturday.
It was such a blessing to have our Sunday School classes meet online last week! It was great to see each other's faces and hear your voices and connect and share! A HUGE thank you to our teachers/leaders! Don't forget to use your GoToMeeting links for Online Sunday School at 9:45AM. Please let us know via email or phone if you haven't already been contacted and would like to join a class. After SS, join us for Online Church on Sunday at 11AM as Pastor Derek finishes up 2 Timothy - what a great epistle! The best way to join is to click the Watch Live button on our website.
We are excited to offer you a Prayer Guide specifically for this time - so that we can remain in prayer together as a church. It will be available on our website on the Abide page. Remember to stay in the Word together, and PRAY with and for each other!
Be encouraged - our church is getting stronger through this in MANY ways! One way is through technology. It's pushing us all to learn new things and make changes in order to stay connected AND reaching people in new ways. I can't wait to share some stories when we are back together. We're learning some new technology, tweaking things, and trying to be sure we serve the Church - you guys!! Let us know if we can help you! Just email email@example.com or call the church at 303-232-9575.
Know you are loved!
Pastor Derek Jones
Your pastors and church staff have been meeting and praying for the last few days about how we can faithfully respond to the COVID-19 pandemic as a church. As you most likely know, the CDC has recommended gatherings be limited to under 10 people at this time and the President has asked us to stay at home if we can. As Christians, we are called to submit to the governing authorities. (Romans 13:1-7) Let us remember to ask God for wisdom for our leaders and continue to lift them up in prayer. (1 Tim 2:1-3)
I want to share with you what our 6-point response is as a church. Please let us know if you have any questions, ministry ideas, or prayer requests by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are canceling all activities at the church through April 3. We will reassess as the situation changes. We will email and post on the website Pastor Derek’s Saturday Updates, and continue to stream our services online at 11 AM each Sunday morning. You can access the live-stream. You can also access the service on Facebook Live.
We want to continue to provide care to our members during this unprecedented time. Therefore, we have created a list of our most vulnerable members and regular attenders who are 60 and older. We are calling each of them to check on them and find out if they have any needs that we might be able to meet. If you are in that category and do not receive a call, please let us know and we will add you to this list. We hope to call weekly going forward.
We are also calling all other Members/Regular Attenders. We also want to strongly encourage all Sunday School classes and small groups to check up on one another and communicate with the pastoral staff any needs that may arise. If you have a prayer request or need, please email us.
We will be in contact with community leaders, other churches, and organizations such as hospitals, etc. to see if we might be able to help. We are simply calling and asking how they might be able to use us to meet the needs of our community during this time. If you are able to volunteer, please fill out this form. If you know of an organization that needs help, please email us.
We believe that this is a critical time for us as a church to be good stewards of what God has given us. Therefore, we have put a spending freeze on all non-essential spending as a staff. Secondly, we are adjusting the use of our building so that we might reduce our energy bills. We are also encouraging our employees to use technology and teleworking when possible. If you call the church and get voicemail, leave us a message and someone will get back to you shortly.
One of the unique opportunities that this crisis has presented is a renewed focus on the need for community/discipleship at home. Over the next few days, we will be revealing our vision to stay connected as a community through a virtual platform called "GoToMeeting". Also, we will be sending resources to help you continue to grow in your relationship with God and knowledge of His Word. Please watch for these emails.
We are grateful for the generosity of the members and regular attenders of Applewood Baptist Church. Every week when we gather, we take an offering to allow us to worship through our giving of tithes and offerings. As we are not able to meet, we cannot do this in the usual way. We are asking you as members and regular attenders to continue supporting the work of our church through your tithes and offerings. There are two ways that you can do that.
1. You can give by check or cash.
You can bring it by the church office and place it in the secure mailbox on the south side of the building. You can also mail your check to the church at 11200 W. 32nd Ave., Wheat Ridge, CO 80033.
2. You can give online.
Simply click here to give online. We have a completely secure way of giving online. You can make a one-time gift or set up a recurring donation that can even come out of your bank account at the interval of your choosing. If you have any questions, please email Laura Schwartz.
This a very serious situation and I want to encourage you to take it seriously by following the recommendations of the CDC such as social distancing, frequently washing your hands, and avoiding larger gatherings. As Christians, we should seek to understand what is going on in the world around us. However, we should not despair.
Let's be reminded that the world is not spinning out of control. God is sovereign. He’s ruling and reigning. We can trust Him. May the words of this beautiful Psalm encourage us.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
With the ongoing health concerns around the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we have decided to NOT hold public services for the next few weeks, and instead will have ONE ONLINE SERVICE at 11AM Sundays. For now, all activities at the church during the week are canceled as well.
Since things change rapidly, we will send a weekly email update SATURDAY mornings regarding the next day's services and the following week's activities. We will also post it online on our website. Please check your email, our website, and social media for plans for the next day (Sunday) and the following week. If you have any questions, email them here. As a health resource, please check with the CDC.
As you may know, President Trump has made updated recommendations, which are available on your favorite news website, etc. In support of this initiative, we are moving to ONE ONLINE SERVICE at 11AM on Sundays. We have a large congregational family, with many in the at-risk category, so we have a responsibility to do what is prudent and in the best interest of every person who calls our church home.
This is an incredible opportunity to be light to those in darkness, to offer the peace of Christ to those with no peace. Please remember your neighbors, especially those who are single or alone. Remember to cling tightly to the Word of God and the hope we have in Christ alone. Jesus said... "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world." (John 16:33) Remember to be the hands and feet of Jesus - showing love and compassion as He did. We are not ruled by fear or consumed by worry about what might happen. Know your pastors are praying for you. Here is an article that might help you process things during this time: LINK
We know that each of you has different circumstances and know what is best for you and your family. Please prayerfully consider these decisions, and support and respect the decisions of others. Let's err on the side of GRACE. While we walk by FAITH, we also want to be WISE.
Please join us ONLINE on Sunday at 11AM. Please continue to be faithful in your giving. Remember you can securely GIVE online, too. We cannot maintain our ministries and serving our community without your tithes and offerings! PRAY for each other, our government leaders, and for continued wisdom for us. (James 1:5)
Thank you. Be well.
Applewood Leadership Team