The unity that exists within us is not conformity; unity is an agreed upon direction and values and, ultimately, it is the desire for you and I to see the Lord Jesus Christ to be so high and lifted up in our lives as a community that it causes us to be unified. Even with our differences! There is this unity in Christ that causes us to overcome all those differences.
We try and put language on that here at First Baptist. We say that that First Baptist Boerne is a gospel-centered (we want to see Jesus high and lifted up), multi-generational family who highly values growth groups and living our lives on mission for the Lord Jesus Christ.
We are a unified family and we are trying to go in the direction God wants us to go. We need grace and trust during this time because, frankly, there are a lot of difficult decisions that need to be made at a leadership level from the church’s perspective.
Why this warning? Because Sunday morning is going to look different than it has always looked to you. We’ve changed service times, we are going to be here socially distanced, we brought in and hired Ray Jones as an Interim and we are going to have this blended music style and we are going to have a socially distanced choir in both services.
You may show up on Sunday and say, “That was different; that’s not the church I knew.” Or you may show up and you are desperate to meet and fellowship with all your buddies just like you have always done and suddenly that is not allowed. And there may be this flavor during the midst of this because you can’t sit next to your buddies and you are supposed to be in family units that leaves you saying, “That didn’t feel the same as it used to.”
First of all, let me say, “I know.” I am sorry, but, we cannot do anything about that. This COVID-19 has forced us all to make radical changes that no one wanted or predicted. But we value meeting together and who we are and where we are going such that we are willing to make changes and to be blessed with what we are able to do right now. And to be happy about that and just say, “Thank you, God, I’ll take it.”
Even if that means you are livestreaming at home because you are at risk and you are not comfortable getting out, that’s ok. More than anything, we need to have a unity and grace that covers different people’s opinions and different people’s perspective about what this thing is supposed to look like. And we need to give so much grace because we understand that things change and people are trying to make decisions. And, no they are not perfect and communication is not always what we hoped for. But, ultimately, in the end, the people of God are known for unity, again not conformity, but unity above all things.
Isn’t it crazy that the last thing Jesus did before going to the Garden of Gethsemane, was to pray out loud so that his disciples could hear, “God, I want them to be so unified.” It’s challenging, because we know that to be unified, we have to lay down our personal preferences. That’s just part of this.
So, as we gather, here is what you may expect:
- It is recommended that you wear a mask while in public areas; you may remove it to worship. Hand sanitizer and masks will be available in the Worship Center.
- There will be NO childcare; your children are welcome to worship with you. There will be activity kits for the children in the foyer.
- You will be asked to line up, six feet apart, to enter the Worship Center where you will be seated by an usher. You will also be dismissed by an usher.
- Seating will be alternate rows with six feet between family units.
- The offertory plate will not be passed; please continue TEXT to give or mailing your offering. There will be boxes at the back of the sanctuary to place your offering in as you leave the building.
- We will be partaking of the Lord’s Supper. The elements will not be passed; they will be prepositioned in the pew racks.
- There will be overflow seating in the Family Life Building. You will be directed there once the Worship Center is full.
- The 9:00a.m. service will be livestreamed; it will not be available on the website, Vimeo or Facebook prior to 9:00a.m. A recording will be placed on all three venues later in the day.
- Growth Groups will continue to meet on Zoom. Please visit fbcboerne.org/live for the most current information on times for each group.