Slow Return to “Normal” – Covid Impact

             It is with a heavy heart that I have to tell you that we will not have Vacation Bible School at Church on the Bluff this year.  I cannot see there being a time this summer when parents would be willing to allow their children to mingle with other children in a closed building and rooms for a couple of hours each night.  Even more so now that there is a slight rise in COVID-19 cases.   
                I suppose that the biggest disappointment concerning the virus pandemic is the loss of Bible teaching time.  Our Sunday morning Bible study classes have been temporarily halted and now VBS.  There is just something special and productive about getting together and reading, studying, and discussing the Bible.  I’ll not consider the church completely “open” until we get back to Bible study times again.  Please make that a matter of prayer.
                On a much brighter note, we have decided to begin our Wednesday night services again!  I know the attendance won’t be as before, but the Bible study we do and the fellowship we have will be another small step toward “back to normal”.   And I do believe we will not only get back to normal, but perhaps we have learned to love that normal we had.  Didn’t we kind of take it for granted?  I will continue to do videos for Wednesdays and Sundays, but for those who are able to get out, the times we have together are precious.  Let us not take our time together for granted any longer.
                As I close, I want to mention one more thing.  Last week I chastised the city of Birmingham for their foolish decision to cut ties with the Church of the Highlands.  I stand by what I said but let me explain how that decision adversely impacts Christian churches and hurts their ability to spread the Gospel.  By their move the city of Birmingham has literally branded conservative churches as “hate groups”.  They have officially said to the world that Christians are haters, are racist, and are uncaring. Despite the unbelievable track record of love and care that churches espouse and produce, we are now being falsely chastised and maligned.
                We may be tempted to say “well, it’s their loss”, and it certainly is, but it goes deeper than that. Think about it:  The government of Birmingham has made the church no more than a political opponent. Now, viewed through the lens of politics, churches can be publicly chastised and hindered in their mission….by the government.  I’m not much on conspiracy theories but I see the devil’s fingerprints on all of this, and it demands our attention.  If we can be censured because of conservative political leanings the true wall of separation between church and state has been breached.
Say good things about COTB!     

Bro. Tony