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COVID-19 Update
By Tom Dabasinskas

The restrictions of the stay at home orders have become tiring and I am yearning for the time when we can gather together again. I find myself dreaming about worshipping together, sharing a good meal with friends and interactions not impeded by masks. To be honest, I find myself thinking a lot about what I want in the days ahead. The instruction of Philippians has been a helpful corrective. "In humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others," Philippians 2:3b-4.

As we reenter life in the upcoming weeks, may we do so with a renewed commitment to seek what is best for the people around us. I pray that as we enter the next phases, we will press beyond our personal desires and seek how God will help us love the people around us. If we do, this pandemic could lead to a time of spiritual revival.  "Experiences of justice and compassion often unlock the door to faith far more effectively than doctrinal argument," Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel.

Please pray for the staff and elders of NPC as we consider the specific plans for in person gatherings. As we make decisions,  I will be sending you details about these plans. Once our local government gives us the green light to gather, these plans will include:

 

  • Following safety precautions of keeping social distance, sanitizing carefully, and wearing masks
     
  • Sharing our worship online for those who cannot or do not feel safe joining us in person
     
  • Finding ways to continually serve those who are in need

 

In our relationships   with one another may we, "have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant." And the result of Jesus' self-sacrificial love will be that, "every tongue acknowledges that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Philippians 2:5-7&11.

Thank-you for the many ways I have witnessed this type of love from you in the past weeks.  I and many others are being blessed by our life together in this time apart.