Sharing with Steve
When will the stay at home end? When can we resume normal activities? Will there be such a thing as normal or will there be a new normal? We have started discussing these things among the leadership. When we do get back together there will be some changes. We will have more sanitizer stations around the foyer and hallways. Initially we may have to sit every other pew and safe distance from one another. We will continue to take the Lord’s Supper, but it will be in a new form. Pre-packaged cups and bread will be handed out before the service. Communion trays will not be passed. We will probably have a place or box to deposit your tithes so that the offering plates will not be passed. There will be no cookie time. Our foyer is just too small. If you want to visit you will be encouraged to move outside away from the front door. The exit at the back of the auditorium will be used to alleviate crowding in the aisle and foyer.
What won’t change? Randy and the praise team will continue to lead us in worship with joy, passion, and thanksgiving. Scriptural sermons will still be preached and proclaimed. We will weekly come before the Lord’s throne in prayer. We will once again get to see smiling faces and hear encouraging words.
Until such time, we need to continue to look to the Lord. I want to look at a couple of verses but take them backwards. Matthew 6:33-34 (CSBBible) 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.
34 Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Though we probably will, there is no need to worry about tomorrow. All the worry in the world is not going to change what will happen. We have enough worries for the day we are in to start worrying about what is going to happen tomorrow. You must be vigilant and when possible make plans, but worry will not help. Instead, put your trust in the Lord and seek first His Kingdom. Seek His righteousness. God will take care of the things that you need. That is His promise to us.
Zoom in with Zack
I have to say that this transition to Meadowbrook has been one of the oddest experiences that I have ever been through. I have been at Meadowbrook for a month now and I have only seen someone else in the office once. I have a new church family that I have only met once in January and not since other than a couple online LIFE group meetings. So let’s see if we can get to know one another a little. I’m going to tell you a little about myself and then I am going to leave 5 questions for you. Answer those questions for me and then send them over to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I grew up in Berkley, MI and was homeschooled through middle and high school. I then attended Oakland Community College for a year before graduating from Rochester College with a major in Christian Ministry and a minor in Biblical Languages. At Rochester, I met Sarah and we eventually married in 2010. She is from Uganda and we maintain strong ties there. I have been to Uganda four times with the last coming just last year. I spent a month in Jinja finishing my Masters degree while working with Bible School training new pastors in Uganda. Sarah and I have one daughter, Mirembe, who is 7. Her name is from the Lasoga language and means “peace.” About a year ago I finished my Masters of Divinity Degree with a major in Global Studies (World Missions)
We have many relationships in the Rochester area. Apparently, many of those relationships cross over to Meadowbrook because many of our Rochester area friends knew that we were heading to Meadowbrook before we knew that we were heading to Meadowbrook.
Sarah graduated from Rochester College in 2011 with a B.S. in pre-med. After a long journey she graduated this week with a Bachelors in Nursing and begins work as a nurse at Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit on May 4. She has been working for a long time to get to this point and it feels surreal to finally arrive.
I am a huge hockey fan. I have played since I was 4 years old. I was goaltender and became fairly decent at it eventually signing a contract to play Junior A hockey before I stopped playing during college. I also officiate hockey and I have done it at every level. I referee mostly youth and high school, but in the past have done a couple of years officiating in the minors and done some ACHA college hockey. My current outdoor passion lies in Disc Golf. I play weekly with my brother and one of the youth from Walled Lake. We play year-round and have started competed in sanctioned tournaments. I was able to place second in the AM2 division at a tournament just before all this virus stuff took over. I have way too many discs, including some collectibles that hang on my wall. Want to learn the game? Call me up and I’ll take you out. I have enough equipment to pass around!
We are excited to be here at Meadowbrook and look forward to getting to know all of you and serve Christ together. Now it is your turn. Answer these questions and send them to me so that I can get to know you.
- Tell me about your family. Married? Kids? Grandkids?
- Tell me about where you are from. Where did you grow up? Where do you live now? How did you get here?
- What do/did you do for a living? Job?
- What are your interests? What do you like to do?
- What does your faith mean to you?
Wanda Douma – May 9
Kiersten Zaremba – May 13
Randy Gilbert – May 13
Joe & Mimi Romaella (Ann.) – May 14
Mike Gerstenlauer – May 18
Tom & Andrea Schwartzenberger (Ann.) – May 25
Larry Esterline – May 25
Gene & Nancy Paul (Ann.) – May 28
Steve Martin – May 30
Sunday, May 3, will begin a new sermon series preaching through 2 Timothy. This letter was written by Paul to Timothy while Paul was in prison. This is his second and final imprisonment. It is a letter of transition. Paul knows that his time on earth is short and wants to convey as much wisdom to Timothy as he can. This summer is a time of transition at Meadowbrook. Steve is retiring in August and Zack Schewe will become the senior minister. The leadership thought that this letter would be a great way to set the foundation for this transition. Steve and Zack will be sharing in these sermons. Please be keeping this series in your prayers as we prepare for Meadowbrook’s future.
The Deacons Corner
AAHH!!!! Spring has sprung. The trees are budding, flowers are blooming, the birds are singing. Warm breezes have replaced the cold winds of winter. What could be better. God is in His Heaven and all is right with the world. But, is it? I don’t think so.
We should thank God for spring renewal and pray for guidance through these turbulent times. Pray early, pray often.
Well, here we go, Meadowbrook Mowing Season is underway. Keeping Meadowbrook looking sharp is a worthy endeavor, indeed. A tip of the hat to the members would be greatly appreciated. I would like to thank the new volunteers who have stepped up to help, Brenda Cox, Lynn Ross and Elaine Bright. We still have some openings, fellows.
Also, as the weather improves and restrictions are lifted, the Deacons could use a little help now and then. Let us know if we can call on you.
A final note: Elaine says if they do not lift this stay home order pretty soon, she will have to clean the house for no good reason. No Sunday meals with family, no sewing sisters gatherings for gabfest, lunch and maybe a bit of work, birthday bashes and any other good reason to clean. 🙂
p.s. We are still a family, love one another. Until we can all pray together, lift each other in daily prayer.
The calendar remains in a state of flux during this time. There will be no men’s breakfast in May. Information about resuming the breakfasts will come later in the summer. We are still planning on having a church picnic this summer. Possible dates are being identified. Church camp at Lake James Christian Camp will be held, but with a shortened schedule. Most of the camps have been moved to July. Several of the two week camps have been combined. More information can be found on their website, ljca.org. Cycle the Campus, a bicycle ride benefiting His House Christian Fellowship has been moved to Saturday, August 1. Meadowbrook usually has a team of riders. Registration is now open.
Adult Bible Study
Because of stay at home orders and social distancing we have not been able to have the adult Bible study. With the traditional summer break coming up we will not be able to finish the Gospel of Mark. Steve is working on finishing all of the study notes for each of the chapters. These will be made available when finished. If you have any questions please see Steve.
First of all, the missions team would like to thank everyone in the congregation for their continued support of Meadowbrook’s mission partners and all of the Faith Promise commitments received for the 2020-21 giving season. As evidence of your generosity, we have seen increases in both the number of Faith Promise participants and the overall pledged dollar amount for the upcoming year. Even in these trying times, we trust God to be faithful.
The missions committee met in a virtual meeting last week and we now have the following plan for the wrap-up of our interrupted missions rally. We still plan to have a visit from Jim and Dot Gregory, the representatives from TCM, to share first-hand about the exciting outreach taking place around the world. Because Jim and Dot live relatively nearby, they can be somewhat flexible with scheduling. And clearly, we are not in a position to set any specific dates or plans at this time. However, the quarantine will inevitably be lifted at some point, and we will reschedule this meeting, whether that be in July, August, or September. At that time, we will solicit final donations for the special project of providing tables for the dining room at Haus Edelweiss. We look forward with anticipation.
Some of our mission partners provided relevant updates that we would like to share with the membership at Meadowbrook:
- Lake James Camp will carry on with all scheduled weeks of camp this summer, starting in mid-June, as planned.
- ICOM, the International Conference On Missions, has announced their 2020 conference in Indianapolis, “The Cross Before Me,” November 19-22. The Meadowbrook family is welcomed and encouraged to participate. A brochure with all details will be placed in the lobby.
- IDES (International Disaster Emergency Service) is providing assistance for the COVID-19 crisis all around the world. The missions committee approved a special gift of $500 to IDES this month earmarked for COVID-19 relief and also the recent tornadoes in the Southern US.
- Ninos de Mexico requested urgent donations for a family of severely abused children that were taken in a couple of years ago, requiring reconstructive surgery and expensive topical treatments for scars, along with psychological care. The missions team approved a special gift of $200 for this need. None of the children or workers at Ninos have been infected with COVID-19 and they want us to know the children are praying for the health and safety of all of their supporters.
God Bless you all for your faithfulness in prayer for all our missions.