Wow..this has been a busy week. So many great things are happening at Tom's Creek. We had our first Sunday evening at the Promised Land and it was amazing! I can't describe it because it was one of those events where you just had to be there. Don't worry they are going to continue through August 1st (with our Pizza and Ice Cream Social before the last one)!
We had an amazing team that lovingly took the organ out of the sanctuary and placed it downstairs until we find a new home for it. That means room has been made for our choir and praise team that officially will start being part of our services THIS SUNDAY! Our Director of Music Ministries has helped get our choir and praise team ready for this first big step. We are still ramping up these music ministries, so please think about joining them. For now the choir will be with us every other week, and when they are they will be helping to lead us for all our hymns. In coming weeks they will have an anthem they sing for us but for now they will just lead us in the hymns. For those online you will be able to hear the hymns sung by a full choir!! Our praise team will be joining us to help lead some of the songs at the 10:30am service. We are still waiting for some more musicians to help fill out the band but you have to start somewhere, so we are! (Spoiler Alert: Our Director of Music Ministries is already working on getting the music together for a Christmas Cantata that combines the voices from both groups).
For those that watch us online we are committed to continuing to be online. We have invested in making sure that we can livestream and plan to always have this offering. Yet, we have made a hard decision to only livestream the 8am service. There are many reasons and I won't get into all the details but know we are committed to offering this and have no plans to stop. As a matter of fact, the new sound system we are in the process of getting (6-8 weeks out) will allow us to provide much improved sound quality for those watching online. It will have ambient microphones that will allow you to hear the congregation singing (and other sounds) so it will sound like you are actually sitting in church! I will put in a shameless plug that if you have enjoyed our online offering and that is how you have worshipped with us please think about financially supporting us as we upgrade the experience.
If you are live-streaming, I will give a warning that Facebook has been messing with live streams and that means the video feed often just stops playing and can take forever to buffer before continuing to livestream the service. Please know that those delays are not on our end. We have invested to increase our bandwidth and our tech team can assure you that the delays are not because of us. Facebook is nice because you chat with others that are livestreaming BUT YouTube plays our video at higher quality with less issues. You can decide what is important to you which is why we pay for a service that allows us to livestream to both at the same time! We also keep the services on YouTube and Facebook permanently so you can go back later and watch.
Reminder that after the 10:30am worship service we will be having our first meeting of the Family Council. This team will be shaping our new outreach to families with children of all ages. We will be looking at events, programs, and services to help support families with infants up through teenagers! Anyone is invited to come to the meeting and share ideas. Holly and I will then take these ideas to ministry teams and committees to attempt to make the ideas a reality. We want to help make it easier for families to grow in their relationship with God and our church!
This Sunday we are continuing with our sermon series "The Devil Made Me Do It". This week we will look at how the Devil will tempt us to give up on God when things don't go the way we want. The Devil will try to prey on our emotions and will wait until we are most vulnerable to try to convince us that God doesn't care about us. God does care but we can often feel forsaken in the midst of our life. We will also look at how God can use the times in the valley to bring us closer to God, if we decide to not listen to Satan.
Attached is the bulletin for this week. We are not yet passing offering plates so the wooden boxes are available to put your offering in. Of course those at home can give online, use text to give, or mail in the offering to church. In addition, we will be collecting prayers in the prayer box on the table in the parlor. Also, if you have announcement that you need to be shared please write them down and give them to me before the service. This will be an ongoing practice for prayers and announcements to help ensure that they are heard and understood by all.