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Hello Rock Family,

It was great to see so many of you at our Zoom service last Sunday. I know that the technology was "clunky" at times, but the Spirit was present and the Lord moved among us across the entire community. We will give you an update on how things will work next Sunday very soon.  Unfortunately, when it comes to an end to our isolation it has been a disappointing and disconcerting week. Not only have the directives from Washington been extended through the end of April, but we have been told that the next two weeks are going to be very difficult as the crisis gets worse before it gets better. This means that the darkest days of our present troubles may well occur during Holy Week and we will be celebrating Easter Sunday in mourning. On top of that, yesterday's earthquake only reinforced the reality of how vulnerable we really are and how quickly everything can and could change. 

So, church, it is time to mobilize for the work God has equipped us to do! But what work is that? We are intentionally separated from others to prevent transmission of the virus and we are isolated as the family of God to our own homes, interacting only by means of machines and programs. How can we carry on the work of the Gospel? You know the answer: it is by prayer. And the whole World needs us to be in prayer right now.  

So, I am calling the Rock to a time of fasting and prayer for our nation and world as we face unseen enemies to our heath and our souls. Pray that the we, as the church, would take this time to re-evaluate our priorities and recognize that we don't have "all the time in the world", but only "the time of the world." Let us learn to abide in Him while in isolation so that we may know how to abide in Him when everything is "back to normal".  And pray against this virus. Pray that warmer weather will put an end to it. Pray for breakthroughs of medicines and vaccines. Pray for cooperation among governments. Pray for the preservation of life. Pray for the movement of God's Spirit. THIS IS THE WORK OF THE CHURCH FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS. 

For those who can, I am calling for a fast from now until Easter Sunday. It does not have to be a complete fast. It could be for a particular meal or only daytime hours. Another possibility is a "Daniel Fast" where you choose to eat only fruits and vegetables. In any event, it should not be a fasting from water. But let's allow hunger pangs remind us of the pain of those suffering the effects and consequences of this virus around the world - including some of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Let our hunger for food become a tangible hunger for God. Let us step into the gap for the sake of the World and the glory of God.

If you are unable to fast, you can still pray. Pray in your homes. Pray with the church in our Zoom prayer meetings (Wed at 8 AM and Sunday at 9 AM) or in our Zoom Community Groups (check with your Community Group leaders). But let's take up the work of prayer one way or another. For this is the work of the church for today.

Love, grace and peace on your and your families,

Pastor Shawn