Allow me to share this salutation: “I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” That was the sentiment the apostle Paul shared with believers in Philippi. It is the same sentiment the staff has for each of you, our church family. We genuinely praise God for the privilege of serving at Summit, which is immeasurable!!! We pray for you every day. God uses seasons like this to remind us how important our family is to us and the staff wants you to know that YOU ARE LOVED!
Here is an update on our worship schedule: We will be having a worship experience this coming Sunday. This will be an online worship service only. It will be a live service, but we are following the guidelines of our state and national leaders and will be using a very small group of people to lead the service. We hope you will join us at Summit Live, or on Facebook. We also hope you will invite your neighbors and friends to join us. (Please provide those invitations from a distance 😊!!) We will be evaluating worship on a week-to-week basis and will do our best to communicate each week’s schedule early in the week.
We can begin meeting online together as a family. Watch for my daily devotion, Monday through Friday, under “Encouragement for the Day” on the front page slide, based on the letter the apostle James sent throughout the world to the dispersed early believers following the persecutions that arose in Jerusalem. His letter provides great insight on how we can experience growth in our faith. He can easily be considered an expert on faith. This man was Jesus’ half-brother, yet struggled believing Jesus was the Messiah. “But when the Jewish Festival of Tabernacles was near, Jesus’ brothers said to him, ‘Leave Galilee and go to Judea, so that your disciples there may see the works you do. No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.’ For even his own brothers did not believe in Him.” John 7:2-5
James not only reached a point where he believed Jesus was the resurrected Messiah, but he became adamantly convinced of that truth. (They say there is no greater advocate for a particular conviction than one who has been transformed from the opposite position.) In James’ case, he was given the opportunity to see firsthand our resurrected Lord. “For what I received, I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scripture, that He was buried, and that He appeared to Cephas (Peter), and then to the twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five-hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. Then He appeared to James….” (1 Corinthians 15:3-7)
One can only imagine the transformation that occurred in James’ heart after seeing Jesus resurrected. One can also imagine the strength of his faith in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior from that moment on. For the next couple of weeks, I hope you will join me on a journey, one that I believe will result in the personal growth of our faith as we take a look at this God-ordained letter.
So, stay tuned for daily devotions, for an exciting service (online!) this coming Sunday, and regular communication from the church staff. This is a time when we need to stay connected!
(written Wednesday, March 18th)