RESPONDING TO COVID-19
As you know every arena of our society has been impacted by the COVID-19 virus and the attempts to slow it’s spread. As a church we are adapting to these new and every changing realities by doing ministry in new ways. Part of our response includes gathering together online. We are streaming our Sunday morning celebration live on YouTube at 10:30am each Sunday.You can join our live stream by going to our YouTube channel: Grace Assembly Los Angeles.
We are also continuing on with Mid-Week Bible Study using the ZOOM online video conferencing service. If you are interested in joining the online study please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can send you an invitation link to join in.
I know that staying connected through digital means is not ideal but we are determined to use the tools available to us so that no one becomes isolated from the family of God while we weather the current storm together.
Why are we dismissing live services and instead having service online?
Please know our current response is not motivated by fear but by several biblical principles.
LOVE, RESPONSIBILITY AND RESPECT
1) LOVE for our neighbor:
Even though you may not be sick personally, as Christ-followers we want demonstrate love for the elderly and all those who might be particularly vulnerable to this virus by taking steps to care for their well-being and health. We are demonstrating our love for God my loving our neighbors enough to protect them.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”(Mark 12:30-31)
2) RESPONSIBILITY to our neighbor:
We have a responsibility to put the needs of others ahead of our own. The need to limit the number of people we come in contact with in order to contain the spread of the virus may not be our preferred course of action personally, but we have a responsibility to our community help protect our neighbors from its spread.
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.(Philippians 2:3-4)
3) RESPECT for authorities:
We are to show honor or respect to the authorities that God has put in place in society as long as they do not require us to sin. Our state officials as well as the leadership team of the SoCal Network have required us to temporarily suspend our live gatherings. Yielding to those placed in authority is yielding to God’s authority so long as we are not required to sin. This is a Christian principle we exhorted to follow.
Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves (Romans 13:1,2)
“Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, 14or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. 17 Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.(1 Peter 2:13-15,17)
Thank you for you patience and continued participation in the life of the Grace Family. We are trusting our God who is in control of ALL THINGS to see us through to the other side of this test VICTORIOUSLY!
Standing in Grace,