May 30, 2020
There is More!
Hi friends,

Just before Jesus ascended, he instructed his followers to prepare themselves for something more. So for the next ten days, leading up to Pentecost, they did just that, meeting to pray and worship.

This year we’re following their lead, using the ten days before Pentecost (May 31) to pray, and to let the Lord prepare us for whatever “more” of the Holy Spirit he would give. To help you in your preparation we have prepared daily resources: a video testimony, a brief Bible study, and a couple of songs. Use any or all of it that you find helpful.

And may we together discover what more the Lord has for us on Pentecost!

Blessings, Keith
Alycia Greene's Testimony
of Something More
A Scripture Lesson on
Something More: Acts 8:4-8, 14-17
When Philip came to tell the Samaritans about Jesus, they both listened to what he said, and saw how the Lord demonstrated how this new life works by healing some and delivering others. They rejoiced and believed. But as it turned out, the power of the Spirit they had seen at work in Philip, was not at yet at work in them. So when the apostles came to check out these new believers, they prayed that they, too, could be filled with the Spirit. The Lord had something more for them.

What sorts of mighty works have you seen God do – Healings? Deliverances? Dramatic conversions? And what works, mighty or not, has he done through you? There is more! The Lord wants to fill out the presence and power of the Spirit at work in you. Are you ready?

As we’ve been waiting upon the Lord these ten days, he’s been preparing us for the more he would give – and it’s going to be good!

Pray today seeking whatever more the Lord might do in you through a fresh outpouring.

Songs for Praise and Meditation
Spirit, Spirit of Gentleness
(Meditative)
Jesus Culture: Holy Spirit
(Rocker)
Our New Worship Plan
Begins Tomorrow: Pentecost!
Now with Virginia phasing in re-openings, St. Giles is taking a next step too. Tomorrow, May 31, we will have a service in the sanctuary, at 10:30. We’ll do so according to the plans described below, so that we can continue in partnership with the larger community to slow the spread of the virus, and to keep our St. Giles folks safe. Livestream will continue! So whether you are in the church or at home, you may continue to join us.

Part of the joy of being together in this way is that May 31 is Pentecost – a festive day to step back into a pattern of in person worship. If you can join us in the sanctuary, this would be a great day to wear red! We are praying for a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit, as we have been during these 10 days of There is More preparations.

Here are the provisions for worship during the state’s Phase 1:

  • That we have a single service at 10:30 on Sundays in the sanctuary, and that we continue livestreaming worship.

  • That anyone who has Covid-19 symptoms, or been exposed, must not come.

  • That we have no classes or nursery. So children will sit with their families.

  • That we only sit in every other pew, individually or by family.

  • That everyone wears a mask, with only leaders doing without, so that they can be heard, and that each individual will remove the mask only to take communion. (We will have some masks in the lobby for those who arrive without their own.)

  • That our ushers guide people, so that they don’t crowd up while coming for communion or departing.

  • That visiting after worship will be outside, and with safe distancing.

  • That communion be by the same pattern we have used in our mini-congregation during the shut-down (bread and cups spread, so that each person need not touch another’s serving).

  • That we strongly encourage our friends who are 65 and above to consider the perils of coming in person and to continue watching from home, but ultimately leave it up to them. We will support both people who come to join in and those who stay home.

Marinating in God's Word:
Acts 2:1-18
The Pentecost story is not just a museum piece for our examination, but a picture of what God would do right here and right now. That makes the reading a bit different, doesn’t it?!

For further reflection on your own or in a small group, consider these questions:

  • The disciples had already experienced so much with Jesus. Yet there truly was something more. (And they were filled yet again in Acts 4!) When have you experienced “something more” with the Lord? What happened? What do you sense that he is inviting you into now?

  • To describe the actual moments of the Holy Spirit encounter, Luke used the images of wind and fire – both with Old Testament roots. What do those images tell us about the nature of the Holy Spirit? What images would you use to describe your own encounters with the Spirit? Wind? Fire? Something else?

  • When Peter explained to the crowd what was happening, he took the prophecy of Joel from centuries before (v. 17-18). And Joel says that everyone gets in on the Holy Spirit empowerment and ministry, not just uniquely gifted leaders. But that cuts both ways – it both excites us to possibilities, and scares us with a “who, me?” actuality. What scares you about moving in greater power with the Spirit? What do you expect God would say in answer to such fears?

  • If the Lord were to do something more with you through his Holy Spirit on this Pentecost Day, what difference do you imagine that would make – for you as a servant of Jesus in the world, and for St. Giles?

Next Sunday we will focus on John 1:35-42.

Service Plans for Dee Steinacker
We will have a service for Dee Steinacker at 1 PM Monday, June 1, here at the church. We’ll be following the same every other pew plans we have for Sundays. There will also be a procession following the service to Hollywood Cemetery.

Visitation for Dee will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 31, at the Bennett Funeral Home, 11020 West Broad Street, Glen Allen, VA 23060.

Adult Discipleship
Pneuma
We are continuing our Zoom class, "Pneuma", which is taught by Keith Hill on Thursdays from 7-8:30 PM. To learn more and to get the link for the class please email Rachel Burns in the office at   rachel@stgiles.org.
The Ten Commandments
Please join us Sunday morning at 9:00 AM on Zoom for our class on The Ten Commandments. All are invited. For any questions please contact Tommy Nance at  twjrnance@gmail.com.
Daily Bread
Skip and Karen Thistle have been providing copies of Daily Bread for any who would use it for devotionals. But with most of us not coming into the church building these days, where we can pick one up, our distribution system has broken down. So Skip has volunteered to deliver a copy to any who request it. Thanks, Skip! If you’d like a copy, just call the church office, and we’ll get word to Skip.