Good morning Five Points family, and grace and peace to you all in the precious and powerful name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! You all continue to be in our prayers as, by grace, we fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, during these days when our lives have undergone tremendous change. Our Governor issued a 3 week Stay Home, Stay Safe order that began on March 24 and ends on April 13. The elders met online for prayer and discussion last evening on the executive order, and Five Points will continue to abide by the spirit of the government's order and extend our suspension of in-person gatherings at Five Points and our ministries through April 13. I say spirit because churches are exempt from the order, but the State has requested compliance. An article at the Gospel Coalition posted yesterday summarizes our position well: "Churches should remain closed until the government deems it safe. Opening too early isn’t an act of pious defiance against an unjust or irrational panic; on the contrary, waiting is a reasonable act of obedience and an act of love for our neighbors." As the State hasn't mandated, but rather requested our participation in the executive order and, so far, we believe their requests to be reasonable. Yet our ultimate trust isn't in our leaders, but in God, who will work everything, even events that have yet to unfold, for the good of those who love Him. We cheerfully join the our community in mitigating the spread of the virus and encourage you to do the same, all while witnessing to the glories of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Please know that we continue to meet for prayerful consideration of all the information we have and how other like-minded churches across our country respond to these events. Furthermore, if anything changes, like a lifting or an extending of the ban on gatherings, we will communicate our plans going forward.
Now, you've likely realized that this order suspends our gathering on Easter Sunday morning. At this time, Lord willing, we will continue to provide home worship services online, including a Resurrection worship order on April 12. That said, whenever we gather together for the first time for corporate worship, we will celebrate Easter together that morning! Resurrection Sunday moves around every year on the calendar, and we're a people of the resurrection everyday, for if Christ is not risen, then our faith is in vain and we of all people are most to be pitied. But Christ has been raised from the dead! So, we'll celebrate His resurrection every day, and when we next gather on the Lord's Day, I pray it will be a day when all Auburn Hills hears us praise our Great Father, His Risen and Reigning Son through the power of the Holy Spirit, all for the glory of our Triune God!
Until that morning, Lord-willing, we're posting encouragements from God's Word through our blog, Facebook, YouTube, and emails throughout the week (today's post from Pastor Mike on Philippians 4 found here). We continue to ask God for wisdom on how to lead you through these days, and we ask you to pray for us towards that end. We do not have all the answers on Thursday, March 26, but we serve the God who does! And we rest in His grace, neither for yesterday nor for tomorrow, but His grace for today. It is more than sufficient to enable us to do everything today for the glory of His name, and to abide in Christ as we bear gospel fruit among our neighbors and the nations!
May the God of peace strengthen you according to the gospel through Jesus Christ by the power of the Spirit!
Pastor JJ on behalf of the Elders