-Tuesday, March 31, 2020-
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)
I want to encourage you:
Shine your light.
We are living in a day when people more urgently than ever perhaps need to see the *hope of Jesus Christ*, that He alone saves and that He alone is working all things out for His glory and the good for any and all who trust in Him (Rom. 8:28).
As followers of Christ, the light we shine through our lives acts as a beacon of hope that points people to behold the great, all-surpassing glory of God.
It’s in Him that we find peace in the storm and rest for our souls.
The LORD is God (Psalm 100:3); we can trust Him (Psalm 20:7).
As the world continues to navigate through the COVID
-19 pandemic, we know and serve a God that stands above it all and that has a purpose in it all.
I wanted to take this opportunity also to update and encourage you about several matters:
1. Worship services, Wednesday PM teaching(s), life group and ministry team meetings, and other gatherings remain *online* for the month of April.
We do not plan to have any in-person gatherings until the earliest, May.
a. To comply with governmental recommendations and the best medical info/advice out there currently. We submit to governing authorities we live under unless they tell us to violate the Word of God (Romans 13:1-7).
b. To love our neighbors by helping stop the spread of COVID-19. This is particularly important for those most at risk (those about 65 yo and those with pre-existing conditions).
2. Even though we are not meeting in-person AS the church, we are still called to BE the church! Shine your light (Matt. 5:14-16).
3. *Easter Weekend*
a. Good Friday worship service – “The Final Word” will be live-streamed online through our youtube channel and website as well as posted on our facebook page for access.
Be sure to join us for this online!!
Our worship team is working hard to create an incredible, memorable worship experience even as we are online.
b. Eggs at Calvary canceled and will be replaced by a “Block Party” for our community this summer.
*Details to come in the days ahead*
c. Resurrection/Easter Sunday – live-streamed
Be sure to take part of this incredible Sunday service as we celebrate and rejoice in the victory we have through the resurrection of Jesus Christ!
4. Discipleship University and Wednesday Night Dinner
– Planned to kick off with Awana this upcoming August for the new school year
5. Wednesday night Live Teaching
– Plans to continue every week!
– Be sure to join us live and online to interact, comment, and ask questions via Facebook Live here on our page!
– 5:30 PM
– Tomorrow’s teaching (April 1) – How to obey Phil. 4:6-7 in a pandemic
6. Sunday worship services
– Livestreamed every week
– Announcements begin around 10:15 am; service starts at 10:30 am
– Be sure to join us online!
– Be faithful to The Lord in your giving even during a time like this.
Ways to give:
a. Online – https://calvaryofpensacola.churchcenter.com/giving
b. By text – see video for instruction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMwFYuqxlRg
c. By mail – Calvary Baptist Church
6824 Pine Forest Rd
Pensacola, FL 32526
d. Drop off in person at the front office during these days/times
Mon-Thurs anytime between 8:30 and 12 pm.
7. Life Groups and Ministry Teams
– LGs and Mts are still in fellowship online using tools like Zoom and Facebook Live
– If you’d like info on a LG or MT or want to join in on one or more, let us know! We’d love to connect you!
– Here’s a list of our life groups: https://calvaryofpensacola.org/life_groups/
– Student ministry private FB group (ask to join): https://www.facebook.com/groups/3027587420639870/
– Children’s ministry is staying connected – contact Patrick and Liz Nims – firstname.lastname@example.org
I’m very excited to communicate these ways of serving in the days ahead!
1. Brownsville Community Center
– Food distribution
– Mon-Sat. either bagging groceries or distributing to those in need
– 9 am to 11 am
– Contact Pastor Evon Horton 850.723.1810
2. Blood Mobile
– Plans to be on campus at Calvary to collect donations on April 16 and April 30th, both Thursdays.
– 9 am to 2 pm
– Give blood if you’re able and let people know about this chance to do so
– Prayer booth will be set up near Fellowship Hall to offer prayer and encouragement to people that come
– You can sign up for an appointment to come give blood in advance! Go here: https://www.oneblood.org/donate-now/donation-centers-list-select-time.stml?driveID=939064
3. Food distribution to students at community libraries
– giving food to students in our community that are in need
– through the city government
– fill out volunteer form from here:https://myescambia.com/open-government/volunteer
– background check is included in form and is required
4. Potentially, we could have a food distribution site on campus at Calvary
*More details to come!
*If you’re interested in serving in any of theses opportunities and want more info, let us know!
Continue praying, loving, serving, encouraging, and believing.
Trust God and shine your light!
With Peace and Hope in King Jesus,
Pastor Walt Magaha
-Saturday, March 21, 2020-
A few quick reminders:
1. Jesus remains on His throne as Sovereign Lord (Psalm 47:8; Hebrews 1:8). Everything in our lives as believers ultimately are used for our good (Rom. 8:28) and for the glory of God (Psalm 106:8; Isaiah 43:7).
2. We know the end of the book. Jesus returns when we don’t expect Him (Matt. 25:13). He wins and we who put our trust in Him will win (Daniel 7:27).
3. Be sure to join us online tomorrow morning at 10:30 AM for our live worship service! I’m excited to worship with you and my prayer is that you are filled with hope and faith as we do and well beyond that as you walk with Christ daily.
You can access the live stream both from our Facebook page: @Calvaryofpensacola
And from our Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrHebpK8pmPlFZKwm2qXYdA
4. Stay connected with your Life Group(s) and ministry team(s)! Staying in fellowship while not meeting in person is critical. Reach out to your groups and ministries with a text, phone call, email, direct message on social media, etc. Be in prayer for them and ask them how you can be praying! If you’re not already connected to a LG or ministry team, let us know! We’d be delighted to connect you with one or more even at a time like this.
5. Be faithful in your giving. You can give online at: https://calvaryofpensacola.churchcenter.com/giving
This is a great option in general and especially now!
If you’d prefer to give by check or cash, you have a couple of options:
a. Mail your check or cash to us at 6824 Pine Forest Rd, Pensacola, FL 32526
b. You may come by the church front office anytime Monday to Thursday from 8:30 AM to 12 PM and drop off your offering (while someone is physically present).
6. Love your neighbor. Continue staying alert to how God may use you to bless, encourage, and witness to others.
7. Remember, this world has many troubles. But, take courage because Jesus has *already* overcome it (John 16:33). Jesus is always with us and is for us who trust in Him (Matt. 28:20; Romans 8:31-32).
8. Here are some incredible worship videos to praise God with as you pray and spend time with Him:
a. Graves to Gardens – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwX1f2gYKZ4
b. Always – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yb4VvNq8WEM
Looking to and trusting in Jesus (Hebrews 12:1-3),
Pastor Walt Magaha
-Tuesday, March 17, 2020-
Update on our response to the current
coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak:
“‘For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
Although recommendations and governmental measures have ramped up in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the past two days and “normal” life as we know it is essentially being “put on hold”, we must remember in times like these that our God reigns (Psalm 97:1).
Without question, there is a lot of fear and anxiety in our world surrounding health, safety, society, and the economy. These concerns are understandable. However, we The Church, God’s People, a holy nation (1 Peter 2:9), are called to “not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:6-7).” This instruction has a corresponding promise. We pray, give thanks, and trust God and His peace will guard our hearts and mind in His Son.
May it be characteristic of us as followers of Christ in a time like this that we are known for our confident peace in Christ and overflowing, genuine compassion for our neighbor.
God is with us even in the most uncertain and difficult of times (Isa 43:1-3).
With that said, I wanted to also notify you of some updates concerning our church’s response to this current pandemic from the coronavirus (COVID-19) and then some steps for you to take:
- Through prayer and careful seeking after wisdom and guidance, we have decided to cancel all in-person gatherings up to the end of March. This decision was made in prayerful response to the latest recommendations from the CDC and President Trump. The president recommended 15 days of eliminating gatherings of 10 or more people.
In-person gatherings for April are still possible but at this time are uncertain given the CDC’s recommendation of an 8 week avoidance of crowds 50 or more. Stay updated however through our Enotes email system, our Facebook page, and our website.
- Even though we don’t plan to meet for in-person gatherings, we do plan to stay connected together in worship and fellowship. Our livestream will be set up and running Sunday morning. You can access the livestream through our facebook page: @Calvaryofpensacola. You can also access the livestream through our Youtube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrHebpK8pmPlFZKwm2qXYdA/featured
We add the service video to our Youtube channel immediately following.
Be sure to join us for worship Sunday morning at 10:30 AM (just like we would in person!).
- Additionally, I will be giving an online Wednesday night teaching both this week and next week at 6 pm. You can connect with us at that time through our FB page as well.
- Like usual, gatherings/services that are live-streamed will be recorded for future viewing on our Youtube channel.
- We encourage you to stay connected with us online, especially during the worship and teaching livestreams.
- During this time we are not meeting in-person, we strongly encourage you to stay connected to your Life Group and ministry team(s). Be sure to check on one another, pray for, and encourage each other. If you’re not a part of a LG or ministry team already, we’d love to connect with some! Let us know at email@example.com
- There may be many people that need assistance during this season. If you’re willing to be of help by delivering groceries, helping in someone’s home/yard, or other ways of service, let us know also at firstname.lastname@example.org
- We are continuing to keep up to date with the best information available concerning the coronavirus (COVID-19) through reliable, reputable sources like the CDC: cdc.gov
- We will keep you informed with any updates on our end.
Other than staying connected with us online, especially during our livestream worship services and teachings, we encourage you to do the following:
- Be in prayer for your family. Pray also for our church family.
- Be in prayer for our community, our state, our nation, and our world.
- Be in prayer for our leaders. Pray for President Trump and the many others who are attempting to take necessary action at this time.
- Be in prayer for those most vulnerable to the virus such as elderly persons and those with compromised immune systems. Also, stay in prayer for those that have been infected.
- Be in prayer for the church around the world to be strong and courageous during these times for the sake of the Gospel. Pray the Gospel isn’t hindered but rather that it goes forward, perhaps even to places previously inaccessible until a time like this.
- Be faithful in your giving. Online giving is a fantastic option.
You can do so anytime at https://calvaryofpensacola.churchcenter.com/giving
If you’d like to give by check or cash, you can either
a. Mail your check or cash to us at 6824 Pine Forest Rd, Pensacola, FL 32526
b. You may come by the church front office anytime Monday to Thursday from 8:30 AM to 12 PM and drop off your offering.
- Be connected to the life of the church by staying in contact with your LG and ministry team(s) (reference item 6 in previous list for details).
- Love your neighbor. In times like these, practice good hygiene with proper hand-washing, “social distancing” so as to prevent spreading illness, abide by CDC and other qualified recommendations for health, help those you can (especially those in your neighborhood), and be a witness for Christ.
- Live in faith and trust God. If you have questions concerning why God allows suffering, disease, etc., you may want to check out this article written by a reliable, Christian resource: https://seanmcdowell.org/blog/why-does-god-allow-the-coronavirus-4-christian-insights
With Unrelenting Hope in King Jesus,
Pastor Walt Magaha