Last week on Easter we rejoiced with followers of Jesus around the world by crying out, “He is risen!” This glorious truth signals not only forgiveness of sins but a new reality of God’s kingdom. This Sunday as we continue to worship from home we’ll look at Jesus’s teaching about this new kingdom in Matthew 13, where he uses multiple parables to paint a picture of his revolutionary reality.
This weekend, we gather in many locations, but we are no less the church. We do not cease to be the Body of Christ when we are sent out each week to our neighborhoods and workplaces, and so we are the church today even as we are not under the same roof. This service is more than just watching a sermon online. It may take stretching your personality and even some vulnerability, but here are thoughts on how to “do church” as an individual or household.
This Sunday we’ll stream services for all four of our Vintage Church locations! Invite friends and family to join us online as worship as one church in many locations.
Start by praying and asking God to lead this time; to speak, shape, and guide our hearts and minds. This is an opportunity to set the tone for this specific time, rather than just turning on an online sermon as you cook breakfast or do the dishes.
Remember that we are a church body, and when we are given a glimpse of God in his holiness and mercy, our response should be one of adoration and praise of him. This is a mark of a believer; our natural response as forgiven in Christ, with new hearts in which the Holy Spirit dwells is to praise him. Worship through singing, confident that even if you’re the sole voice in the room, you are part of Christ’s church and the voices of his followers are lifting up praise at the same moment.
Another act of worship is through giving. As we practice generosity, we not only help see God’s kingdom come about in our world now, but we practice dependency on God rather than trusting in our material items or own abilities. Consider what you will give in response to what God’s given you. To give online, visit this link.
In addition, the Lord’s Supper is one of the sacraments that mark the true church, and was instituted by Jesus Christ. It sustains and strengthens faith in the gospel, and we view this not only as worshipful obedience to Christ, but as a means of grace by which we are reminded of our place in God’s family, the church, as adopted sons and daughters. This can be done at home, and we recommend reading aloud from Matthew 26:26-28. If you’re gathering together over a meal after the service, you can also begin the meal by reading the Matthew passage and taking communion, which is much more in line with how the early church would practice this together.
*Parent resources can be located at this blog post.