Kosciusko Community Day of Prayer and Fasting

Dear WL Family,

The Warsaw Intercession Group, along with the Warsaw Pastors’ Cohort, is sponsoring A Day of Prayer and Fasting tomorrow -Wednesday, April 1st. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are people who are sick, scared, lonely, out of work, and in need of help. Our civic, business, and spiritual leaders at all levels need wisdom as they make decisions.

It is time for the Church in Kosciusko County to collectively cry out to God for His help, wisdom, protection, and comfort.

Let’s go to God together!

If you are not familiar with what fasting is or want some tips, open the attachment HERE

Life groups, Adult Bible Fellowships, and women’s groups which have been meeting online are encouraged to set a time to pray together online tomorrow.

Below is a schedule of events.  Feel free to join in on one or all of them.  Those hosted on the WLGBC Facebook page will be 15 to 20 minutes.

Day of Prayer and Fasting Schedule of Events:

8:30 a.m. Orientation to the day of prayer, scripture reading, and faciliatated prayer with Pastor Kip on WLGBC Facebook page HERE
   
10:45 a.m. Community Prayer Service on The Intercession Group Facebook HERE.
   
12:30 p.m. Songs are sung prayers. Wally Brath leads in 20 minutes of singing on the WLGBC Facebook page HERE
   
3:00 p.m. Terry White facilitates a time of Song and Prayer on the WLGBC Facebook page HERE.
   
4:00 & 7:00 p.m. Pastor Bruce facilitates a time of prayer with Small Business Owners and Employees via Zoom. If you would like an invitation to this meeting, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
   
8:30 p.m. Pastor Tim concludes the Day of Prayer with reflection and facilitated prayer on the WLGBC Facebook page HERE.


“Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven.
For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”
Matthew 18:19-20

From Our Homes To Yours

Due to Governor Holcomb’s stay-at-home order, our worship service this Sunday is coming from our living rooms to yours.  Pastor Bruce will be sharing a message from John 11.  The service will be available on our website HERE  and on our Facebook page  at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday.  Lyrics for the songs we’ll be singing can be downloaded by clicking HERE  or you can print out the pdf HERE

As Easy As 1, 2, 3
Giving online is easy.  1) Go to the church web page and click on the $ symbol at the top of the home page  2) Enter the amount you want to give.  3) Choose to give one time or set up a recurring gift.  4) Choose the fund to which you want to donate:  WL Ministries, Building Fund, Local & Global Outreach, or the Care Fund.  Then follow the prompts.  If you want to give to more than one fund, click give again!

WL Kids
For the week leading up to Resurrection Sunday WL Kids is providing a free devotions and activity kit for families.  Order one for your family and an extra one for a neighbor family (that’s free, too!).  To order kits, complete the Google Form (click here) by APRIL 1st.  

Good Friday Communion
We encourage you to set aside Good Friday (April 10) as an evening to celebrate communion in your homes.  Guidebooks and an online worship service will be provided to all households.

Women of WLGBC
Women's Ministries has launched a new Facebook page called WL Women Engage and Exchange. Check it out and join HERE

Condolences
To the family of Alberta “Birdie” M. Hanson, who went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Thursday morning at the age of 92.  She will forever be remembered as an adventuresome servant of the Lord who never stopped learning (she took almost 100 courses at Grace College in the Silver Scholars program) and never stopped ministering to others.  Arrangements are pending with Redpath-Fruth Funeral Home.

Community Impact
Look for information on Community Impact in tomorrow's email.


A Word From Pastor Kip

Truth Talks

We’re learning all kinds of new ways to converse these days: Zoom, Google Hangouts, Facetime, Skype…the list goes on and on. There are dozens of platforms for conversing, even if we can’t meet each other face-to-face. However, with all of our social media, there is one conversation we still tend to avoid—the “truth talk.”

Jesus was good at truth talks, not because he relished conflict, but because he loved people enough to tell them the truth. He was more interested in saving people’s souls than stroking their self-deception. Rather than pleasing people, he wanted them to see their need for him.

On Sunday we looked at a “truth talk” Jesus had with a group of people “who had believed him.” The problem was that they saw Jesus as an add-on to their faith rather than as the essential foundation of it. As descendants of Abraham, they were trusting in their spiritual ancestry rather than Jesus.

One’s true spiritual origin, Jesus says, is revealed by one’s conduct. In other words, one’s behavior--especially in response to Jesus--shows who one’s Father really is. Jesus told them: “If God were your Father, you would love me.” God is the Father of those who accept Jesus as the Son of God and who hold to Christ’s teaching.

Truth talks are important, but we should practice first on ourselves. Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.” Here’s a question we should ask ourselves. What do my priorities, my life choices, my behaviors say about who I really belong to?

The coronavirus has jolted us out of the routines that normally consume us. In doing so, it has created a rare opportunity for self-reflection. This is a good time for a “truth talk” with ourselves. Jesus is committed to speaking the truth to us. Are we willing to listen?

As far as “truth talks” with others, these are good days to “give the reason for the hope that you have” (1 Peter 3:15). Peter gives us an important reminder here: “gentleness and respect” should characterize all truth talks. In other words, Jesus’ followers should be marked by humility and the willingness to listen, even when we’re having a truth talk.

Let’s “Live in the Word” this Week

This week’s Bible readings are found in John 11 and 12 (see below). Also, check out the daily devotionals for these passages at www.liveitblog.wordpress.com.

Monday             John 11:1-16

Tuesday             John 11:17-45

Wednesday       John 11:46-57

Thursday           John 12:1-36

Friday                John 12:37-50
 

May God’s grace and peace fill your hearts,

Kip Cone
 

Let’s remember, at 12:00 each day, to pray that our church
would look outward on mission!


A Letter from Pastor Bruce

Dear Church Family,

In these days of being the church scattered, the value of caring for and praying for each other is in the spotlight. Thank you for what you are doing to call and check on friends in your Life Group, your ABF, and your neighbors.

Please be praying for:
Randy and Lois Maxon and family. Lois' father, Dane Rapp, passed away on Wednesday, in Lititz, PA. A memorial service will be held in August. Thank you for praying and caring or the Maxsons.

The Wendt and Lowman families. Ted’s wife, Judy, passed away this morning. She had been in treatments and battling recurrent cancer over recent months. Her daughter is Amy Lowman. The Wendts and the Lowmans (Chris, Amy, Matt, and Megan) are all part of our church family. Arrangements will be shared once set. Thank you for praying and caring for the Wendts and Lowmans.

Join us for Worship Tomorrow:
I hope you will be able to watch the worship service, tomorrow at 10:00. We think we have eliminated the technical problems of last week. Thanks for your patience. The service will be posted at 10:00 a.m. on facebook and available anytime thereafter.

If you have needs:
Remember to make any needs known to your Life Group or ABF, or call the church office or the pastor of the day.

Website Updates:
Also, the website has been updated. Click on the main banner and then any of the five tabs that will come up when you do. New content will appear be there anytime something is posted or e-mailed. A number of churches in the community are working together to meet needs such as: wifi to do e-learning for homes that need it, grocery shopping and delivery for seniors who should not be going out themselves, and support of the food pantries at CCS and Salvation Army. It is so encouraging to see area churches locking arms to meet needs.

Pressing On,

Pastor Bruce


A Letter from Pastor Kip

WL Family,

Greetings!  May the peace of Christ govern your hearts and minds.
Although we may not be able to meet together over the next few weeks, no one should be left on their own.  Let’s be the church wherever we’re at!  That means we love each other by helping carry each other’s burdens. 

What’s our care plan?  Who do I call?

  1. If you need help or prayer or you have a physical or financial need, your first call should be to your Adult Bible Fellowship leader or Life Group leader.  This is a time for the smaller groups within the church to shine with compassion, care, and practical ways to meet needs.  Your ABF or Life Group leader can contact the church for additional resources, as needed. If you are not part of an ABF or LG, please call the church office.
  1. There will be limited office hours at the church, when people will be answering the phone.  These hours are Monday through Friday, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  During these hours, please call the church office with questions or needs.  The number is (574) 267-6623
  1. Outside of the limited office hours, a pastor will be on call, according to the following schedule:
  • Mondays:              Nick Deck (574) 551-6787
  • Tuesdays:             Kip Cone (574) 377-2127
  • Wednesdays:        Tim Wright (574) 265-4981 
  • Thursdays:            Kip Cone (574) 377-2127
  • Fridays:                 Dave Rank (574) 527-8365
  • Saturdays:             Tim Wright (574) 265-4981
  • Sundays:               Bruce Barlow (574) 377-0293

Worship Jesus, Love Each Other, Reach Our World

Check out our Winona Lake Grace Brethren Church Facebook page for weekly updates on how we can Worship Jesus, Love Each Other, and Reach Our World during these unique days.  If you do not use Facebook, you can access our Facebook content at the bottom of the home page on our website (www.wlgbc.com).

Again, all activities at the church building, including worship services and all children’s and youth ministries, have been canceled until further notice.  Although the church buildings are being cleaned and sanitized daily, we request that you do not use a key to enter.  If you need something from the church building, please call the church office.

Looking Outward

Let’s conclude by looking outward.  We want to be the best neighbors we can be during this unprecedented time.  Here are just a few ideas…

  • Phone/e-mail/text message your neighbor to check in on them, so they don't feel alone.
  • Write a note to your neighbors, inviting them to text you with needs that come up.
  • Deliver a care package to your neighbors of common commodities. Ask if there is a specific way you can be praying for them.
  • Is there a single parent who now faces unique childcare challenges? Can you help?

Let’s keep the conversations going!


Dear WLGBC Church Family,

Engage your neighbor. Engage our world.

How appropriate our theme for this year is to the unprecedented and unique events of recent days.

What a time to be the church and love people well. 

Yesterday afternoon, Governor Eric Holcomb announced that all non-essential gatherings where over 250 persons would assemble in the same place at the same time, including churches, should be canceled. (https://calendar.in.gov/site/gov/event/gov-holcomb-announces-new-steps-to-protect-public-from-covid-19).

The pastoral team and ministry leaders met this morning and want to communicate with you the ministry plan for our church family during the current statewide and national efforts to contain COVID-19. We are convinced these are days of opportunity to serve our neighbors and co-workers, to be calm and compassionate people of faith.

So, we ARE having church this Sunday, but it will be e church.

Beginning this Sunday, we will be urging you to gather your family or a couple friends (with appropriate “social distancing”) and join in to the livestream. The service will be broadcast live at 10:00 am each Sunday morning and will remain on the church’s Facebook page, if you need to watch it at a later time.

So, there will be no ministries at the church the next two weeks. Our church’s ministry leaders will send details specific to their ministry to those involved. This will be in effect for at least the next two weeks and until further notice. It is such a fluid and fast changing situation that we are going to see how things develop. In fact, you will hear something from the church every couple days, so keep an eye on e-mail and the website. 

Life Groups may choose to meet or not meet at their discretion. If you are healthy and wish to meet, do so. (no childcare for Life Groups will be available these weeks) But, if you are immune-compromised, if you aren’t feeling well, or if you are in the most vulnerable category, over 65, please stay put and keep your “social distance.”

This is a time to be a praying church.

Please join us in praying and thanking the Lord for elected and health officials who are doing everything they can to control the spread of COVID-19. This is not the time to panic, criticize, or second-guess those the Lord has placed over us. (Romans 13:1,2 and Titus 3:1). Please be praying for our community, especially our medical professionals and for the most vulnerable folks in our community. 

This is a great time to be a serving church.

We often talk about “being the best kind of neighbor” and we’ve been given an opportunity to put that into practice.  In fact, this is a crucial time to shine bright with gospel love towards our neighbors and friends. Check on your neighbors regularly, especially the elderly and at risk. Be ready to meet a need and to offer prayer…and don’t wait until they ask for help.  Give them a clear way to contact you if they need help. Remember, you are the light of the world!

This is a great time to be an engaging church.

We urge you to consider these days as offering great opportunities to engage our neighbors and co-workers:

  • Check in on neighbors, help support them where needed; invite to watch on-line service; speak hope, bring God into your conversations.
  • Is there a neighbor or co-worker who needs your help to grocery shop or run errands?
  • Is there a neighbor you can give a phone call - to check in on them and so they don't feel alone.
  • Offer a roll of toilet paper to a neighbor with young children.
  • Is there a single parent who now faces unique childcare challenges? Can you help?

Most of us have a few people we can call for help. This is an opportunity to BE a person whom others can call. Speaking of calls, call a couple of your brothers and sisters in the Lord  to check on them. 

If you have a need, please reach out to your Life Group or ABF, or call the church office. For now, the office remains open for regular daytime hours. We want to help.

This is a time to be a generous church – to our neighbors, to those who will be missing work, especially those dependent on hourly wages, to those who need a meal delivered.

And as for your giving at church . . . While services are livestreamed, you may continue your gifts and offerings to the church. If you normally give by check or envelope, you may mail your offering to the church at 1200 Kings Hwy, Winona Lake, IN, 46590

Thanks for reading. One last thought. We have an anchor. We trust God as things change quickly. We have our confidence and are able to rest because we know God is our refuge.

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!” – Psalm 91:1-2

For the pastors and ministry leaders,

Pastor Bruce