Worshiping Sundays as an Online Faith Community

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to view our online sermons.

10:15 a.m.:  Drive-In Worship Service and
Facebook Premiere Worship
Church Office:  980-999-3500 

Weekly Newsletter: October 15, 2020
The rain last weekend as the remnants of Hurricane Delta passed through the Carolinas demonstrated the ability of our Imagine Church family to adjust on the fly thanks to the benefit of communication technology such as email, Facebook posts, and the new Remind app.  In addition to being our fallback option in case of inclement weather, our online worship platform has developed a loyal and devoted following on whom we can depend each week and for whom we are indeed grateful.
We expect to resume the threefold worship settings this Sunday, October 18, of drive-in outdoor worship on the church property, online worship via Facebook Premiere (both at 10:15 a.m.), and the posting of our outdoor worship later Sunday afternoon on the Imagine Church YouTube channel.  It is our hope that these arrangements will carry us into November, providing options that are safe and that fulfill the needs and wishes of our diverse church family.  
2020 continues to be a year of surprises, change, and challenges.  We have learned not to take for granted how much we need each other and how valuable it is to be together.  At the same time, we seek to be safe and to demonstrate our mutual care by protecting the health and well-being of our church family and guests.  Daily, we thank our heavenly Father for providing us such a beautiful and spacious tract of land on which we can gather for worship during these crisp fall Sundays and which we hope we can continue to utilize for the weeks to come.

Upcoming Events:
Sunday, October 18:  THIS SUNDAY! 
10:15 a.m.  Drive-In and/or Sit Outdoors Worship on New Church Site, 5471 Highway 55, East, Lake Wylie (and Online Worship on Imagine Church Facebook Page) 
Message:  "Love Where You Live, Part 3" by Pastor Bruce
Separate Sessions for Imagine Kids (Elementary) and Imagine Nation Youth on Site
Wednesday, October 21:
9:30 a.m.  The Circle Maker Bible Study
Facilitated on New Church Site, 5471 Highway 55, East, Lake Wylie by Amy Davis and Jennifer Tankersley
Sunday, October 25:
10:15 a.m.  Drive-In and/or Sit Outdoors Worship on New Church Site, 5471 Highway 55, East, Lake Wylie (and Online Worship on Imagine Church Facebook Page) 
Message:  "Love Where You Live, Part 4" by Pastor Bruce
Separate sessions for Imagine Kids (Elementary) and Imagine Nation Youth on Site
In This Issue
Imagine Church Devotional

"The True Land of the Living"
I'm around death a lot.  I'm a pastor.  I have stood with countless families by the casket in the cemetery, in the chapel, or out on the church site (as I did with Bill and Laura Lockey Wednesday afternoon at a memorial service for Bill's dad) as we have given loved ones over to God's eternal care and keeping.  I'm around death a lot.  But my understanding of death has changed forever due to the courage, determination, faithfulness, and trust exemplified by so many of the saints we have laid to rest. The witness of their faith in the process of dying has led me to interpret my own life in a remarkably different way.
It's often been cancer, or more recently Covid-19, that would come to claim the earthly body, but neither illness nor even death has ever been able to claim one's inner self.  Oftentimes, in one's last earthly days, I've sensed that his or her spirit is actually soaring and ascending to the heavenly reaches which we can only envision when we let our imaginations contemplate what eternity might be like.  At such times, my response can only be spoken through tears, not words.  Because death is so limited.  It cannot invade the soul.  It cannot quench the human spirit.  It cannot steal eternal life.
Sometimes, following my visits to the hospital, I would head back home thinking, "At least our patient is still in the land of the living."  However, I've slowly come to realize that I've had it backwards.  Life on this earth is really the land of the dying.  Our loved ones, as they near death, are actually preparing to go to the land of the living.  Someday, they will be among the saints waiting to greet us there -- for heaven truly is the land of the living.
You see, death doesn't come at the end of life.  Rather, it sneaks, bit by bit, across the border into life.  Long before we die, therefore, we are dying.  It is simply the land we live in.  
As we watch over and care for our loved ones in their last earthly days, maybe we should remember they are not dying as much as they are preparing to live.  For Bill Lockey's dad, and for all who have passed over into heaven during the year 2020 due to Covid-19 or other causes, they have discovered that, on the other side of death, there is life. For them now, and for all the company of heaven, death is a past experience.  Their lives are far more complete, more whole, and more vibrant than any of ours; because, after all, we're consigned for now to the land of the dying.  But they will have moved on to inhabit their special place in the land of the living.
In the name of the One who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,
Bruce Jones, Pastor and Co-Creator,
Imagine Church of the Carolinas
Worship This Week
It's been such a joy to gather outdoors on the church property, and we were disappointed that last Sunday's downpour forced us to cancel.  However, the forecast for this coming Sunday, October 18, is sunny and cool -- perfect fall weather to gather for drive-in and sit outdoors worship!  We invite you to join us at the new church site, 5471 Highway 55, East, in Lake Wylie at 10:15 a.m. as Imagine Church gathers for worship.  There will be an online component at the same hour on the Imagine Church Facebook page, so you have two different options by which you can join us.
If you come to the church site, plan to bring a folding chair or camping chair, and you might want to include a light jacket if it's cool on Sunday morning.  We will hear part 3 of our October series called, "Love Where You Live."  It will include a story from the Old Testament in which God spared an entire region because of the presence and influence of just a few people.  You never know what a difference you make, right where you live!  Please join us for worship on October 18, either outdoors on site or on Imagine Church's Facebook page!
11:11 Prayer
We have asked the entire Imagine Church family to pause each day, Monday through Saturday, at 11:11 a.m. for a time before God in prayer.  You can pray for what's on your heart:  for our nation, for the upcoming election, for unity, for racial conciliation, for our church, for the health and safety of our brothers and sisters, for those suffering because of the pandemic -- however you are led.  We believe there is great spiritual value in all of us praying at the same time. Won't you join us?  Set your alarm for 11:11 a.m. each day to stop and pray.
Sympathy to the Lockey Family
We extend sincere Christian sympathy to Bill and Laura Lockey, Will and Juliet, at the passing of Bill's father, Mr. William Revers Lockey, IX, on October 8, 2020, due to complications from Covid-19.  Mr. Lockey was at Atrium Pineville for five weeks fighting the illness.  Bruce led a service to remember and celebrate Mr. Lockey's life at the Imagine Church property on Wednesday, October 14.  Mr. Lockey, with roots that stretch back to England, was the ninth generation in his family bearing the same name, Bill is the tenth, and Will the eleventh generation in this family.  Please continue to hold them in your prayers. 
Remind:  THE FASTEST WAY to Stay In the Loop!
This past weekend was the perfect opportunity to put the Remind notification app to the test.  On Saturday afternoon, when it was evident that Sunday's outdoor worship would not be a wise decision, we were able to quickly notify the 40 or more people who have signed up to receive Remind notifications that the outdoor service would be canceled by sending notifications straight to their phones. 
If you haven't already signed up to receive Remind notifications, we highly encourage you to do so because it is THE FASTEST WAY to receive important updates and notifications from Pastor Bruce or Church Administrator Kari DiDonato.  Here's how to do it:  
Choose a way to receive messages.
If you have a smartphone, get push notifications by opening your web browser and going to the following link: rmd.at/imaginechu
Follow the instructions to sign up for Remind, and if you don't already have the Remind app, you'll be prompted to download the mobile app. 
If you don't have a smartphone, you can receive text notifications.  Simply text the message @imaginechu to the number 81010.  If you're having trouble with 81010, try texting @imaginechu to (424) 295-0868. 
Don't have a mobile phone? Go to rmd.at/imaginechu on a desktop computer to sign up for email notifications.
If you have any issues working through this process, please reach out to our Church Administrator, Kari DiDonato, by means of her church email address (imaginechurch2014@gmail.com) to ask for help. 
Pray Circles Around Your Biggest Dreams and Your Greatest Fears
The Circle Maker Bible Study met Wednesday, October 14, on the church's Lake Wylie property.  The group, led by Jennifer Tankersley and Amy Davis, will continue to meet weekly on Wednesdays at 9:30 a.m. and will really learn and understand the power of prayer.  Participants should bring their own camping chairs, but in the event of unfavorable weather, the barn will provide the option of coverage.  If you wish to join the group or if you simply want more information, please text Amy Davis at 704-516-2437.
Join Us for Our Fall-O-Ween Festival!
Halloween is just around the corner at the end of this month, and Fall is already here in all its glory with beautiful colors and crisp temperatures...so let's celebrate them together with our Imagine Church Fall-O-Ween Festival!  The festival will kick-off with a variety of fun and family-friendly online contests and activities on our Imagine Church Facebook page each day of the week leading up to Halloween (October 26-31). One of the contests involves pumpkin decorating, so if you've already carved up a jack-o-lantern, snap a picture now to be posted on our Facebook page the week of our online contest.  There will be many other opportunities to participate online that week with prizes being awarded for some contests and even just for participation!
Then, on Sunday, November 1, the Fall-O-Ween Festival will culminate with an opportunity for fellowship, photos, and light refreshments following our in-person drive-in worship at our beautiful Lake Wylie property (5471 Highway 55, East).  We hope you'll be there with us on November 1, and we encourage you to invite a friend, too! 
More details will be forthcoming, so please stay tuned!  
It's Starting to Feel and Look Like Fall, Y'all!
We're sending BIG THANKS to everyone who has contributed toward the decorating of our beautiful property!  The festive Fall decorations make our property look even more 'lived in', and Amy Davis and Jennifer Tankersley will continue to accept any of these items at Sunday's service:
  • Hay Bales
  • Pumpkins
  • Ribbons
  • Wreaths
  • Corn Stalks
  • Other miscellaneous Fall decorations including outdoor decorations for which you no longer have a use
We Are Thankful for How God Works Through Your Giving
Even when we have only been able to worship as a virtual faith community, your faithfulness to give has been an amazing thing to observe.  Thank you for demonstrating how God is at work in the life of this church family by helping to keep Imagine Church's ministry alive and vital through your generous giving.  If you are led to make an offering, collection baskets will be located on stands at this Sunday's "Drive-In and/or Sit Outdoors Worship" at the church's property in Lake Wylie.  Additionally, offerings can be made online via credit, debit card, or ACH check payment using the link below or by mailing cash or check to our church office at:   
 Imagine Church
13000 S. Tryon Street, Suite F-114
Charlotte, NC  28278  
Be the Hands and Feet of Jesus
There are so many opportunities that exist for our church family to be the hands and feet of Jesus and to help others through various means of service right here in our community.  If you are aware of an opportunity that you would like to see highlighted in the newsletter, please email Kari DiDonato at her Imagine Church email: imaginechurch2014@gmail.com 

Palmetto Women's Center

Located at 828 Lucas Street in Rock Hill, the Palmetto Women's Center is an extension of the local church that shares the love of Jesus Christ and His redemptive power.  Among other things, the Palmetto Women's Center supports women and their families during and after stress pregnancies by enabling them to choose life and have hope in Christ for the future.
The Palmetto Women's Center is a 501C3 organization.  They do not accept government money nor do they receive funds from The United Way.  That means they rely on their community of churches, businesses, and individual donations for their center to function and provide services at no charge.
Throughout October, we will support the Palmetto Women's Center in several ways.  Thank you to those from our church family who have previously brought donations of baby items to our in-person worship.  This Sunday, October 18, and the following Sunday, October 25, we will continue to collect baby items, maternity clothes and any of these household items from their wish list:
  • Dollar Tree Laundry Baskets (white) for Layettes 
  • Tissue Paper
  • $5.00 Gas Cards
  • Clorox Wipes
  • Hand Soap
  • Kleenex
  • Paper Towels
  • Trash Bags
  • Bottled Water
You can bring any of these items to this Sunday's worship service on our new church property in Lake Wylie.  If you are unable to attend in-person worship and still wish to donate items, please reach out to Church Administrator Kari DiDonato at imaginechurch2014@gmail.com to make other collection arrangements. 
Thank you, Imagine Church family, for generously supporting this month's outreach opportunity.  You can learn more about the Palmetto Women's Center by checking out their website or by following them on Facebook:
Weekly Inspiration and Encouragement
Inspirational Song:
By: Kim Walker-Smith   
"It's a simple song (even a little old school) with a profound message; just be. When you come into the presence of God to worship Him, everything else can wait. There is nothing more important in that moment than just to be with Him and pour out your affection and adoration on the One who is worthy." ~Kim Walker-Smith
Submitted by:  Jennifer Tankersley,
Minister of Worship and the Arts 
Bible Verse of Encouragement:
"Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."  ~John 14:6 (NIV) 
Prayers and Praises  
To date, we have had twelve individuals in the Imagine Church family who have tested positive for Covid-19.  Symptoms for some have been worse than for others, and all are recovered or recovering.  We have chosen not to share the names publicly, but we ask you to keep them and their families in your prayers.
Please pray for Bonita Nugent who is having surgery today, October 15.
Pray for comfort for Jo Johnson, friend of many in our Imagine Church family, as her illness continues to progress.
Please continue to pray for:
Zach Preston
Bob Wujciak
Dianne Cloer, friend of Michelle Transou
Gary Holloway, friend of Debra Tadlock
Vaughn Dunn
Jerry Brownlee, father of Lydia Smith
Have a prayer request or praise item to share? Please email info@imaginechurchnow.org so the church can join you in prayers and praise!

Home-Based Life Groups
The Greater Community Life Group resumed its bible study beginning on September 30 and met again October 14.  We, too, are in the midst of 'The Circle Maker' bible study, and Michelle Transou is facilitating discussions.  We will continue to meet biweekly in the Summerhouse neighborhood through the holidays with our next meeting set for October 28.  For more information, please contact Michelle Transou at 704-299-6235.
The Landing Life Group has resumed meeting either by Zoom or at the home of Bruce and Tyra Jones at 1520 Calvin Hal Lane, Lake Wylie.  We will continue to meet on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month at 6:30 p.m.  Our next meeting will be by Zoom on November 5.  For more information, please contact Bruce Jones at 980-999-3500. 
We ask all home-based Life Groups to let us know their meeting schedule by dropping us a note at info@imaginechurchnow.org.  Thanks! 
Pastor Bruce Jones | 980-999-3500 | info@imaginechurchnow.org
Imagine Kids

This month, Gregory is highlighting stories about real people who had God-given super powers. When we follow God, He can make us all super heroes...heroes of faith!  This Sunday's message will focus on Esther, and, in case you missed it, here's a look at this past Sunday's message about David and Goliath.

The children will be dismissed just before Bruce's sermon and will return to their parents at the end of service.  Carpet squares spaced 7 feet apart will encourage participation while maintaining proper social distance.  Everyone who is working with the children during this time will be wearing a mask, and we also encourage the children to wear masks as well.  A portable restroom facility is now conveniently available on site, and hand sanitizer will also be available.  It is our utmost desire to keep the children safe while also teaching them about the love of Jesus, and we hope YOU will join us in person on Sunday!  
NOTE:  In the event that this Sunday's in-person worship is cancelled due to weather, please look for Gregory to give his message on Facebook Live at 10:00 a.m. 

Upcoming Events:
Please stay tuned for information about future Imagine Kids events. 

Memory Verse:
Parents, here is the memory verse for you to practice with your child(ren)!

Preschool and Elementary
"The king said to Daniel, 'I'm sure your God is the greatest God of all. He is the Lord of kings. He explains mysteries.'"  
Daniel 2:47
Parents, if the entire verse is too long for your preschooler, have them learn the first part:
"The king said to Daniel, 'I'm sure your God is the greatest God of all.'"
Gregory Roberts | 704-502-3107 | imaginekids@imaginechurchnow.org  
Imagine Nation Youth
This past Sunday's rain forced Tim to give his message titled 'Being Real' from the comfort of his own home.  However, we're anticipating gorgeous fall weather this Sunday, October 18, and so we invite our Imagine Nation Youth to join us at the church's beautiful Lake Wylie property during our "Drive-In and/or Sit Outdoors Worship".  The youth will conduct their own separate session and should bring chairs to enjoy Tim's message from the great outdoors.  And, good news, a portable restroom facility is now conveniently available on site.
NOTE:  In the event that this Sunday's in-person worship is again cancelled due to weather, please look for Tim to give his message on Facebook Live at 11:00 a.m.  
Upcoming Events:
Winter Xtreme:
Mark Winter Xtreme in your calendar for Dec. 27-30!
Cost $200
$100 non-refundable deposit due by Sept. 27;
$50 due Oct. 25;
final $50 due Nov. 29.
Or, you can pay in full.
Please make all checks payable to 'Imagine Church'.
Price includes event, food, activities, transportation, and lodging.  Bring extra money for arcade, t-shirts, and shopping.
Sunday, Dec. 27
12:30 p.m. - Meet at CSD YMCA
1:00 p.m. - Depart CSD YMCA 
5:00 p.m. - Arrive at Winter X-treme 
6:00 p.m. - Dinner 
Monday, Dec. 28
9:30 a.m. - Breakfast
11:00 a.m. - Leave for Anakeesta for lunch, zipline, shopping, etc.
5:30 p.m. - Dinner
7:00 p.m. - Service (Riley Clemmons and Crowder)
Tuesday, Dec. 29
9:30 a.m. - Breakfast
10:00 a.m. - Service (Newsong)
12:30 p.m. - Lunch and free time
5:30 p.m. - Dinner 
7:00 p.m. - Service (Austin French, Tim Tebow, Lecrae)
Wednesday, Dec. 30
9:00 a.m. - Breakfast
10:00 a.m. - Depart
2:00 p.m. - Arrive at CSD YMCA for pick-up
Please contact Tim Gunn if you have any questions about Winter Xtreme.  
Tim Gunn | 803-322-1113 | youth@imaginechurchnow.org
Happy Birthday!

We send heartfelt birthday greetings to these Imagine Church family members who have birthdays throughout the next two weeks:

Kristin Clark
Oct 15
Sydney Walker
Oct 15
Jill Turner
Oct 16
Cameron Hurst
Oct 17
Cadence Jones
Oct 19
Stephen Kowalczyk
Oct 19
Lauren Magnie
Oct 19
Summer Whalen
Oct 22
Sawyer Clark
Oct 24
Emma Transou
Oct 24
Saddie Case
Oct 28

If you are wanting your name added to our birthday list, simply  send us a quick email at info@imaginechurchnow.org. We want to celebrate with you!
Only 18% of people today have a church home.  We want to become that home, whether you're a long-time believer or whether you feel far from God.  There's a connection and joy that can only be found through fellowship with God, fellowship with the body of believers, and inspiring worship.  We hope you will come find that connection and joy for yourself.  That's Imagine Church! 
We believe in the importance of taking risks, together.