COVID, KBC, and the Kingdom of God
The last time we met as a congregation was March 8! For almost 6 months, Kirby Baptist has been hobbled by the coronavirus – COVID-19. Like so many congregations, we have been forced to retreat to our isolated homes for public health. Few people ever thought the “shut down” would last this long and no one really knows when it will be over or what the future will look like in so many areas of life – including church life. KBC has made multiple adjustments to try and keep God’s people connected and on mission.
Our Sunday morning worship services have been moved online. Virtual, corporate worship… what a concept! But it is working. Since we began streaming mid-March on our website and Facebook Live, we have seen pretty good participation. There has been great music, thanks to Jacob and his team, to lift our souls toward our Hope – God’s grace in Jesus Christ. God’s Word has been preached each Sunday to a virtual audience that seems to grow each week. And, great interaction on Facebook through comments.
What is missing is the fellowship and love expressed when a congregation worships God in proximity to one another. We have marked off the sanctuary for social distancing guidelines… and there are a few coming for worship in the building, masked up for church.
We pray for the day that we are back to holy hugging and handshakes. Until then, please know that we understand and support your concern for controlling the spread of the virus. Should you decide to join us on Sunday, please wear your mask and be mindful of social distancing guidelines – it’s the compassionate thing to do.
Our Wednesday night prayer and Bible study has not missed a beat either. We meet on a virtual platform called ZOOM that allows for great interaction. We share prayer requests, go over our prayer guide together, and pray… then we open God’s Word together for a time of study. We hope you join us if you are not part already. Simply download the ZOOM app on your smartphone or visit ZOOM.us on your computer. Click on “Join Meeting” and input the meeting code: 895 1823 9333. Be sure to join with video and audio when prompted so we can see your smiling faces.
We also have one Sunday School group that is using ZOOM to meet virtually. And we have two “in person” Bible study groups meeting at the church building. One meets at 9:45 on Sunday mornings (the original Sunday School hour). The other meets on Tuesday morning and is designed for men. Social distancing and safety protocols are observed.
We are making the best of a very difficult season. We are called to congregate (Hebrews 10:25). The church has been meeting for communion, prayer, and worship since Acts chapter 2, yet we are isolated. We are called to the Great Commission of Matthew 28:19-20, yet we can’t baptize virtually. Yet we trust this will come to an end soon. In the meantime, we pray that you are safe, well, and following Christ in your smaller circles of life.
“I thank God, …as I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day. …I long to see you so that I may be filled with joy.” (2 Timothy 1:3–4)
A Solemn Assembly
“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
Our land is in trouble. A tsunami of sin is rising in our world. Old convictions and standards are being swept away right before our very eyes. Behavior that was once considered immoral is now openly flaunted and widely accepted. The winds of change are blowing all around us, and alarming things lie just over the horizon.
God’s people – the Church desperately need revival. Our world desperately needs a revived Church, declaring the exclusive message of the Gospel and standing in the gap as the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth. I believe God is calling His church, and KBC specifically, to a time of repentance and to return to Him as our living hope – our only hope.
God has used times of national crisis to call His people to repent. We see examples of this all through the Old Testament and in our own country’s history. In 1863, in the midst of terrible civil war, President Lincoln issued a proclamation for a national day of “humiliation, fasting, and prayer”. A solemn assembly, like that called for by the prophet Joel.
“Consecrate a fast, Proclaim a solemn assembly; Gather the elders And all the inhabitants of the land To the house of the Lord your God, And cry out to the Lord.” (Joel 1:14)
I am calling KBC to a time of fasting and humiliation. …of prayer. A solemn assembling of God’s people. I propose that September 27, 2020 be a day of fasting and repentance as we seek the Lord together. I realize that we are still likely to be in pandemic restrictions, and will respect each Christian’s conviction toward public gatherings. But we will assemble at the church building, observing social distancing guidelines. Would you prayerfully consider what God would have you do?
There will be more details in the coming weeks.
-Jerry Canupp, Pastor
Thank you for your faithfulness
Because of your faithful stewardship toward the ministry of Kirby Baptist Church during this time of pandemic, giving has remained constant and ministry has been able to continue. We have averaged just over $18,000 each month for the first half of 200.
While we are saving on utilities with the limited use of our building, there are still many regular expenses, as well as the added costs related to live streaming and ZOOM technology. So, thank you again for your continued faithfulness to our generous Savior through you tithes and offerings. THANK YOU!
"Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the profit that is increasing to your account. But I have received everything in full, and I have an abundance. I am fully supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you provided—a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Now to our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.” (Philippians 4:17–20)
How can we pray for you?
You can find the most recent copy of our church's prayer guide right here. Please visit here often and pray with us over these concerns. Also if there is a specific need you have for prayer, click here.
We want to keep our prayer list up to date so if you would like to add, delete or update someone on our list, please contact the church office at 210-661-2760 or email our office.