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The Latest from Northpoint – 4.2.2020

To our Northpoint Church family,

For years, we have all used expressions like “we’re going to church” or “I’ll see you at church.” We all knew what we meant: the church as a place, a building, or a landmark.

We’re now learning every day what “church” really means: people, connections, love, service, and a source of encouragement. And we’re finding new ways to be the church: a church that is the invisible body of Christ, a holy temple, a house made of God’s people where His presence on earth dwells.

The Elders, leaders, and staff at Northpoint are meeting regularly (by computer, of course!) to pray and seek God’s direction. Today’s email will provide you with just a summary of our priorities and direction during this time. We all long for the day when we will see each other face to face, but until then, this is how we’re going to do everything we can to be the church.

Our priorities are:

  • Keep working! While we can’t do everything we used to, we can do something, and what we can do, we must, by the grace of God, do it! Our ministry leaders, staff, and small group leaders, our Care Teams, and Growth Groups are working to reach out, meet needs, pray with each other, and keep our fellowship going.
  • Use the tools God has given us! God, in His providence, has given so many technologies that can help us stay connected. We’re streaming, Hanging-out, Zooming, texting, and FaceTiming. But remember, there are old tools as well: we’re rediscovering the telephone as a way to connect personally, and we’re using it. Don’t be afraid to use the phone as well!
  • Follow those in authority! As God’s Word tells us, we are to be subject to those in authority, not only because of their role but because they care for our health. We are respecting the guidance of the Federal, State and local governments on social distancing, shutting down operations, and not holding group meetings.
  • Keep our eyes on the Lord! God has always provided for His church and His people, and we, in turn, can do all things through Christ, who is our strength. We are going to be a light in our community and a helping hand to those in need, both within and outside the church. If there is a need and we can meet it, we will.

These priorities lead to seven specific steps we are taking regarding our meetings, our staff, and our ministries:

  1. Our Sunday services – We are working to improve our online worship every week, and we owe a big thanks to those who are working so hard to make this happen. We’ve received positive feedback, and we’re going to make Good Friday and Easter services as special as we can. Remember, real worship takes place in our hearts as we lift up praise and thanksgiving, and we hope that our virtual services can create some of this and help bring us together. We will continue streaming our services until the circumstances and health guidelines clearly change.
  2. Our Northpoint campus – In line with the guidance of our local health authorities, we have asked our staff to work from home and to avoid visits to the Northpoint campus. Of course, we have identified a few individuals to keep an eye on the facilities and to check for mail. Fortunately, God has provided many ways that we can extend our ministry and stay in touch during this time.
  3. Our Northpoint staff – Our staff is working hard to keep various ministries going, to find new ways to communicate, and to meet needs. Some roles, however, are directly related to work on campus or events. During this time, we have made a decision to keep our staff employed and paid at their usual weekly hours through April 30. This includes our full-time leaders, part-time staff, and hourly employees. We will prayerfully consider where God is leading us as we move forward.
  4. You can call! – Although the Church Office is not open, our staff receives notification whenever we receive a call, so we can followup right away. Don’t be afraid to call if you have any special needs or just need a pastor to call you back.
  5. Cleaning – We will have staff coming in for the streaming and media work that goes on, as well as to pick up needed materials. Just to be safe and ready, we are thoroughly cleaning all surfaces at least twice a week. We have also assigned staff to keep an eye on our facilities and security.
  6. NP Finances – Thank you for your faithfulness! Giving is still possible HERE on our Northpoint website, and although it has dipped slightly, it is still very consistent. At the same time, some of our expenses are lower. Please continue to support the work while we’re meeting virtually for a time.
  7. Please Stay in Touch – Our Care Team ministry has made contact with every senior member of our congregation, as well as others who might have a need. Growth Group leaders and other ministries are doing the same. If you or your family need anything, please reach out and let us know.

Remember, God has established and empowered His church for exactly times such as these, and we are all playing our part in His plan. Stay close to the Lord, close to your family, and close to those God has entrusted to you at Northpoint Church.

In Him,

The Elders
Northpoint Evangelical Free Church