LEFC Guide to Worship at Home – Sunday, May 3, 2020
Dear Church Family,
I wish we were gathering together for worship in our building on our campus this Sunday. Sadly, we are not, and it currently seems that we may be in for a longer wait until it is wise and loving to gather in large groups once again. The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away. May the name of the Lord be praised.
For now, we continue to worship at home and use technology to connect with and care for one another. We have prepared another ten-step guide for families to use in home-based worship. You’ll notice that the theme of rejoicing continues throughout. As followers of Christ, we have so many reasons to rejoice! Lord-willing, I will be posting another video message this weekend on Philippians 1 where Paul says that exact same thing, “I Will Continue to Rejoice.”
Our “Worship in Unity” this week features an important piece of theology from the Westminster Larger Catechism, the “big brother” to the one we used last week. It succinctly captures what we believe happens to a Christian when they die. When the WLC speaks about “members of the invisible church,” it means “invisible” now in that we cannot infallibly tell from the outside if someone is truly a Christian on the inside, but God does know! And it also means “invisible” then in that after a Christian dies we cannot see them at all, but we know that they are safely with Christ.
I hope that your family is singing together these days. Singing together is the thing I miss the most during this time away from our worship gatherings. However, we don’t need to be at church to sing, and we do need to sing. It’s good for our hearts and helps us to cast our cares on Him because He cares for us.
What time are you going to gather your household this weekend to worship the Lord Jesus Christ?
In His Grip,
– Pastor Matt
P.S. CityAlight, a group from whom we’ve learned a number of our worship songs, just released a new one titled, “Your Will Be Done” which I think has a great message for us today.
Home Worship Guide
1. Call to Worship
Read Psalm 33 with joy as your family gathers to worship the Lord.
Have someone pray and ask God to bless your time of worship at home.
2. Worship in Singing
As a household sing “Nothing But the Blood” by Robert Lowry (1876).
**Option. Families with younger children might also or instead choose to repeat the song from the end of last week’s worship guide: “Rejoice in the Lord Always.” Parents might plan to do this short song for several weeks because repetition helps us to learn something well. Don’t forget that it is also a canon you can sing “in the round.”
3. Worship in Unity
Recite together Question #86 of the Westminster Larger Catechism (1648).
Q: What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death?
A: The communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death, is, in that their souls are then made perfect in holiness, and received into the highest heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies, which even in death continue united to Christ, and rest in their graves as in their beds, till at the last day they be again united to their souls.
4. Worship in Lament and Thanksgiving
When Job’s children died, he responded with great faith and said, “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised” (Job 1:21).
Have each family member share something that the Lord has given and something that He has taken away.
Taken Away: __________________________________.
After each member speaks, say, “May the name of the LORD be praised.”
**Option: During the family fellowship meeting on Zoom today, we are going to ask everyone, especially the kids, to tell us something the Lord gave you this week. Prepare a family spokesman to tell us about the Lord’s gifts to your family in the last seven days.
**Option. Have someone pray a prayer of lament that we are not all partaking of the Lord’s Supper together again today.
5. Worship in Bible Memorization
Recite Philippians 4:4, the first of our new “Hide the Word” verses for this Spring:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” – Philippians 4:4
**Option: Don’t wait until the verses get long and difficult to memorize. Have each family member close their eyes and say the verse out loud. Remind everybody to rehearse it each day this week.
6. Worship in Prayer
Take prayer requests and pray for each other.
Read the prayer guide together and pray for the rest of the church family and the requests listed.
7. Worship in the Word
Watch or read Pastor Matt’s message: “I Will Continue to Rejoice.””
[The message will be available online by Sunday morning.]
Some families may want to watch/read the message on their own and then have a Bible study and discussion together during this time.
Application Questions for Personal Reflection and Family Discussion:
- Why did Paul insist that he would continue to rejoice? Would I do the same thing if I were in his situation?
- Am I prepared to die? Why or why not? If not, what do I need to do be ready?
- Why did Paul expect to go on living at that time? What can I learn from his example for my own life right now?
8. Worship in Singing
Sing “In My Life, Lord, Be Glorified” by Bob Kilpatrick (1978).
**Option: Our church’s hymnal includes 3 verses, “In my life…” “In my song…” and “in Your Church…” The author’s original had a 4th verse, “In our home, Lord, be glorified.” Consider adding a 5th verse that corresponds to today’s message from Philippians:
“In my death, Lord, be glorified, be glorified. In my death, Lord, be glorified, be glorified someday.”
9. Worship All Week
Have someone pray a prayer of commissioning for your family as you end this time of gathered worship and face a week of new opportunities and new challenges to serve the Lord, the church, and the world in His Name.
10. Participate in LEFC Family Fellowship Meeting on Zoom – 11am on Sunday May 3
Many of us are meeting through video-conference online this Sunday at 11:00am:
- See one another’s faces and hear each other’s voices.
- Tell the group something the Lord gave to your family this week.
- Interact with Tim and Debbie McIntosh as they retire from active missionary service.
- Pray for one another live and online.
If you have any questions about how to do this, please don’t hesitate to ask!
Church Family News
Mother’s Day is Sunday! We are looking for a few guys willing to help with a special surprise for the moms of our church family on Saturday. If you want to know more, reach out to Marilynn for the details.
Dave and Nancy Smeal thank you all for your kindness, support, encouraging messages, and flowers shown the past 2 months after the death of Johnalee and Doyle Smeal.
Help for Haiti
An email that came this week from VOHM outlining their critical needs. Currently their general fund has only 3 weeks’ worth of funding. Further their church family is suffering. The email says, “This pandemic is also now seriously affecting the lives of our church families ability to provide food for daily living. Pastor Henoc reports many are going hungry for want of basic nutrition. Dare I say starving. We have 450 families in need of immediate help. For a 25lb of rice, a sack of beans and a gallon of cooking oil, it will cost $33USD and will feed the average family for 3-4 weeks.” We have opened a designated giving fund to assist Pastor Henoc and his churches. You can give to this through the church by marking your gift “Haiti” or donating online here.
Every year we set aside some time to honor those in our church family who have graduated from high school, college, or graduate school. Are you completing any type of schooling during the 2019-2020 school year? Please contact the office for a link to the online form. We will provide more information soon on how we will celebrate our graduates and their accomplishments.
Our church and our pastor love to pray for you. If you have a need for prayer, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. All emails being sent to this address will be seen by Pastor Matt. Items you want passed out to the rest of the church family will be forwarded on to the rest of our church family for prayer.
Prayer Meeting at Home
Our prayer meeting ministry will continue using the same format we have been using. Pastor Matt will send resources for our Wednesday night Prayer Meeting at home. These include a short Bible lesson and prayer guide. If you would like to receive these resources in your mailbox, please contact Pastor Matt.
Helping One Another
We have developed an online form to identify those from our church family and community who may need some assistance and those who are willing to help others during this pandemic. If you need help, know of someone who needs help, or can help, please contact the office for the link to the online form.
Deaconess Relief Fund
Thank you to those who have already sent a gift to this fund. If you are aware of anyone in our community and church who have been economically impacted by the state’s mandated shut down of non-essential businesses, please reach out to the church office or contact anyone on the leadership team. You can still give to help meet these needs by marking your gift “deaconess fund” and sending it to the church.
Available Resources and Online Library
We have a few free resources available for pick up any time of day. There are Bibles, Our Daily Bread, and our Sunday school books sitting between the double doors. Also, our library is available to browse online. Book requests can be given to Marilynn. You can either stop by and pick it up or schedule a drive-through pick up during office hours.
Continuing to Give
Thank you for continuing to support our ministries and missionaries. Ways to give:
- Mail your offering check to us at PO BOX 114, Lanse, PA 16849
- Cash or Check in person. Drop off your offering at the church during office hours (8:30-3:30 Monday-Wednesday) in the offering plate right inside the door.
- Online Payments – P2P (CNB), PayPal, and Venmo are all e-giving options. Our account address is our email: email@example.com. Contact Marilynn if you need any help navigating this way of giving.
PRC 2020 Fundraising Banquet: Virtual Event
Make plans to join the PRC virtually on Tuesday, May 19th at 8:00pm for a live broadcast of PRC’s 2020 Fundraising Event. Together we will hear an organizational update form Jenny Summers and listen to the heart of PRC through client testimonies. An RSVP for this event is required to obtain the link. Questions? Get in touch with Valerie Kovalick.
Contact the Office to be sent these items.
More Links to Helpful Resources:
“The Joy of Psalmtooning” by Fred Sanders
Coloring Book for Kids on the Coronavirus by Nicole Rim
Words of Hope: 1 Peter 5:6-7 with Ed Welch
“Is it okay for Christians to feel anxiety?” with Alisdair Groves
“God Sustained Me in COVID-19, as He Did on 9/11″ by Christina Ray Stanton
“Even in the ICU: Why Hope Will Conquer Death” by Kathryn Butler, M.D.
Lanse Free Church
255 Cotohisc Road
Lanse, PA 16849
Worship Service: Sunday, 10:00am
Prayer Meeting: Wednesday, 7:00pm