If it weren’t for a couple of Lockdowns (or rather Lock-Ups) we wouldn’t have a third of the New Testament! I am sure the apostle Paul did not have this romantic outlook on his “confined” seasons… The reality is however that we benefit to this day from his magnificent attitude in those seasons:
'As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. '
Ephesians 4:1-3 NIV
What an incredible amount of wisdom flows from his letter to the Ephesians! Just listen to his description of the mental state desired for us: humble…gentle…patient…bearing with one another…keeping the unity…the bond of peace. I must admit…these descriptive terms were not necessarily what was going on in my mind during this lockdown. I KNOW I WAS NOT ALONE! Helpline had more callers on Saturday the 13th of February than on any given day for the last 62 years. We are doing it tough! Our mental health is bombarded by fear and frustration.
Let’s head to the wisdom of someone who knows the perils of prison…which is much worse than a lockdown! He reveals the premise by which we can access this promise of a sound mind in this season:
“I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received”
The anchor for a sound mind is understanding your calling. As Christ Followers we find our purpose in His purpose for our lives. Calling exists on two levels in our lives:
Firstly, we are called to Christ:
'God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. '
1 Corinthians 1:9 NIV
Secondly, we are called to love one another:
' “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” '
John 13:34-35 NIV
Where God calls, he capacitates! Let’s be committed in securing our calling in the aftermath of this latest lockdown.
'Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. '
Challenges with Online
2 Peter 1:10-11 NIV
We have a wonderful team of volunteers that help us set up for our weekend services onsite! They did their best to accommodate the abrupt changes that needed to be made after we received news of the lockdown and its guidelines (some of what we were informed of by late Saturday evening). This led to some technical challenges. We appreciate your patience and would like to let you know we are working on it!
Staff prayer needs
We as Berwick are a faith family and I’d like to ask your prayer for some of our leaders that have some needs. Scripture teaches us to pray for those in authority and therefore I’d like to take liberty in mentioning some of our leader’s prayer needs:
2021 Sermons available to watch on YouTube
Andrew Austin had severe reaction to some prescribed medication he was taking. Please pray that his doctor’s corrective measures would cause a quick response.
Genny Smith’s Father-in-law is battling cancer and we trust for a healing miracle. Please pray with us for that.
Michael Rojales’ health is slowly improving, and we would like all to stay in prayer for him.
Our sermons for 2021 are available for viewing on YouTube. There is also a link on our Facebook page that will lead you to our YouTube channel if you are on Facebook. Please be aware that your Facebook layout can be adjusted on your device so you can have easy access to our online sermons. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the default Facebook layout it may take a few clicks to get to the YouTube link. Spend a few minutes somewhere getting to know your device’s Facebook layout for ease of access!
As soon as the migration process for our website is completed, we will upload the 2021 sermons on that platform. We suspect there is still a couple of weeks to go for this to be completed.
It is with gratitude that we can testify that we had a very healthy financial 2020. Our diligence in supporting Christ’s work through his church is a trademark of Berwick Church of Christ. As the bulk of our contributors do so through electronic transfers, we saw a substantial dip in this kind of contributions over the month of January. If it was due to the holiday season leading to a momentary lapse this may serve as a reminder that your contribution makes a difference. Should you be going through some financial hardship, please be aware that we pray for you and would like to support you through this very tough time. Do not forget that we have a process by which we can assist you with food and necessary products through our Humanitarian Fund.
At 10:30 this morning the lockdown was lifted in some respects. I stipulate for you how this will influence our functioning:
Onsite gatherings for religious institutions are permitted. So, WE WILL GATHER ONSITE ON SUNDAY 21 FEBRUARY!!!
Our Onsite service will be livestreamed @ 10am on Sunday on YouTube. The link will also be available on our Facebook page
Masks are required where you cannot keep a physical distance of 1.5 meters.
Density quotient as before the lockdown is still in place, therefore you should book for your attendance this Sunday on Trybooking. Should you need assistance with booking, please contact the office on Thursday or Friday during normal office hours.
Please do not attend our onsite gathering if you present any Covid-19 associated symptoms.
We love you and are so excited to see you again on Sunday!!!