March 25, 2020
Greetings to you Abundant Life family & friends,
I wanted to take a minute to offer a word of encouragement, as well as to pass along some important information.
I have been in touch with many of you over the past week+, and I must say – your courage and confidence in the Lord in this season has inspired me. He is the God of all of our days. In Psalm 139:16, we read, “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” He is with you and He is for you. Turn your heart to Jesus more and more each day. Study His word, seek His face, examine your heart. He is worthy to be worshipped in every area of our lives. Blessings in your journey.
We have a unique opportunity to bless the residents of Sunset Nursing Home. Please read below:
I’ve spoken to Sunset Nursing Home in Boonville. They currently aren’t allowing any visitors of course. There are many lonely residents.
For our Kids Project this week, we are going to bless them by sending them encouragement. Here are the details:
1. Take an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper.
2. Have child (or yourself) draw a picture, write a bible verse, write a note, etc to encourage the residents.
3. Take a picture of this and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
4. Send it via email by Monday 3/30 by 12pm.
We will print the pics and drop them off for Sunset to distribute.
Thats it! You can encourage the residents of this senior community without having to leave your home.
Finally, I do want to encourage you church family. Please remain faithful in the giving of tithes and offerings in this season. Your support allows our church body to serve so many with the Gospel. Some people have asked how to make their regular tithe and offering. There are two main ways to do this currently.
1. Mail – mail this to: Abundant Life P.O. Box 22 Boonville, NY 13309. We check this regularly.
2. Online using a debit card or e-check. Visit easytithe.com/alf
We are so thankful for each of you. Please continue to reach towards each other daily; in prayer, in service, in connection.
If you have any needs, please reach out. We are together in this for the Lord.
Pastor Brandon & ALF Elder Team
Greetings Church Family & Friends,
I heard today that this is a time that is both chaotic and peaceful. That is probably a good perspective. People are losing jobs, and life is being abruptly impacted, and yet we have an opportunity to connect with one another in a way that is not often available. I am aware that this can be a time that will continue to be uneasy for many of us – with uncertainty lies a lack of control. If you are like me, we value some level of control in things. I am reminded in this season more than ever that if I can acknowledge HIM in ALL of my ways, He will direct the path before me. Consider this – you can acknowledge the Lord, look to Jesus, and lay all else aside in this season. To me, this is very comforting.
A couple of updates that I wanted to pass along to you. I understand that not everyone can be reached via email and through the internet, so we are trying to reach those members of our church family via phone as often as possible. Here are some updates.
1. A daily call to prayer – please join us for this daily prayer time from 12p-1215p. It won’t be online, it won’t be video recorded. It will be us the church unifying together and seeking the Lord as one. We will pray for the needs around us and within us. We will seek the Lord for guidance and wisdom. We will do this together.
2. We will be having church together this Sunday at 10a if you are available. Please gather your loved ones in your home and join with us. This will be online, on our website and on facebook live. You can worship with our church family regardless of where you are. If you can’t stream or watch online, we will be sending you the CD and it will come within a day or two after this.
3. We have begun reaching out to each of you. We, the elder team, have been calling our church family and regular attendees to our church – wondering how we can help, and seeing if there are any prayer requests and needs. If you haven’t been contacted, you will be in the next day or two.
4. Stay connected – if you are a part of a life group or a ladies group or a mens group or the children’s church, etc. Find 5-10 people that you are connected with in the church and reach out to them regularly. Share your burdens with one another. Don’t wait for them to contact you. Send them an encouraging note or text message. Don’t stop being the church. Stay connected. We need each other.
5. Check on social media and our website regularly as we are working to send out devotionals, videos and encouragement that we hope will help you in this season.
6. Do you have a testimony to share with your church family? You can video record yourself with a message about 2 minutes in length and send to Pastor Brandon (315-771-3330) and we will share this with others.
Looking forward to seeing you all soon.
Pastor Brandon & MaeLeah & ALF Elder Team
March 17, 2020
Blessings to you Church Family,
As all of our lives have had major adjustments made to them over the past week, we pray that you are finding peace in the presence of the Lord. It is in the middle of the storm that we often realize and are reminded of how much we truly need the Lord. I pray for you today that you would experience a great courage and strength in knowing that the Lord is with you.
We wanted to give you an update from our leadership team in regard to our efforts to continue the work that the Lord is doing in Boonville in spite of the events around us. We believe that our God is alive and active on this Earth and no separation of people, or concern of illness, can separate us from the love that God has for each of us. This is the promise of heaven, that you are His and He is yours. Below please read and be encouraged about how your church family is going to be active in this time.
- We will continue to provide worship services, teaching and encouragement through email, video, phone calls and more. It is our desire to provide this several times per week with resources for people of all ages, including children’s materials.
- If you haven’t signed up for our email newsletter, you can do this on our website (getabundantlife.com).
- If you have Facebook please go to our page and “like” our page if you haven’t already. This will ensure that you will receive live videos from our church. If you don’t have a Facebook account, it is not necessary that you start one, you can still visit our Facebook page and view our content (facebook.com/getabundantlife)
- You can always visit our website for updated information, including sermons and teachings.
- We will begin trying to connect with our church family by means of phone calls about once a week, to see if there are any needs that we can help with. We will also gather any prayer requests you may have so that your church family can stand with you.
- We will begin a time of corporate (church wide) prayer during our lunch time. We will purpose ourselves to PRAY TOGETHER from 12p-12:15p each day during this time. If you are unable to join with us during this time, find time to pray. Prayer is powerful in the life of a believer. For examples of how to pray and what to pray here are some things you can consider:
- Pray for the leadership of our church family to make wise and anointed decisions and that they would be led by the Holy Spirit of God.
- Pray for protection.
- Pray for homes and families.
- Pray for the people who have lost jobs as a result of this time.
- Pray for people who are sick, that they would experience the refreshing of the Lord.
- Pray for peace, for our community and for our homes.
- Pray for the leadership of our local, state and national governments.
- Pray for the countries of the world.
- Pray for the prayer requests of the saints, the people in our church family.
- Pray that people would come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
- Pray that the gospel would continue to go forth in our day.
- We will continue to reach towards our community – helping as we can with the needs that we are made aware of. If you become aware of a need, please communicate this to us.
- If you have any needs, please know that you can call our church offices and we will help you as we can. Our number is 833-942-3093, or you can email email@example.com.
- Please continue to check for updates on our website, getabundantlife.com, and also please continue to give your tithes and offerings (easytithe.com/alf) as we still have people, ministries and areas of the world that we support in addition to our church facility to care for. You can also mail any tithes and offerings to our church facility (P.O. Box 22 Boonville NY 13309).
We are in this strange time together, know that you are not alone. Jesus said to his disciples, come let us go to the other side (Mark 4). This has always spoken to me in times of adversity, that there is an “other side” to our circumstances. Let us look forward to that day with great anticipation when we will come together again, face to face, to worship the living God. We are the church, not a building, but a people.
Blessings in this season,
Brandon & MaeLeah
Dan & JoAnn
Andrew & Lydia
Saturday March 14, 2020
I am reminded today of Numbers 6:24-26, a blessing: “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” He is the author of hope and peace and it is to Him we look. The day we find ourselves in can be one that is led by fear and anxiety, or by wisdom and the Holy Spirit. The Lord is the God of all of our days, and He certainly is in this season with us. Isaiah 41:10 says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” I pray for you, church family, that you would experience a season of refreshing in the Lord. Please read the below statement regarding the upcoming Sunday services and activities at Abundant Life.
I have spoken to our eldership team at Abundant life and we have decided on the following plan of action going forward for our church family: We will be having remote services for the next couple of Sundays. This may extend longer. We will keep you updated frequently. By remote we mean the following:
- You can listen or watch our services from your home, in your car, etc. We will have a worship service that will be streamed on Facebook (facebook.com/getabundantlife), put on YouTube, sent in email, and even by mail if needed to those who do not have abilities to stream online.
- We will have a dedicated space on our website (getabundantlife.com) for these services. We will include notes, children’s activities, family devotionals, prayer request forms, pastoral care forms, etc.
- Due to how quickly this was sprung upon us, tomorrow’s service will not be available online until around 2pm.
- We will continue to be a church family. This may look different than we are accustomed to, but I believe that it will be a great opportunity for us to grow close together and support one another through the days ahead. I would encourage you to reach out to others. Use any methods you have at your disposal to reach towards other people. I am praying that the spirit of Christian unity would grow in us and our love for one another would only increase.
- At this time we are suspending our regularly scheduled activities at the church until further notice. This includes mid-week services, men’s groups, women’s groups, etc.
We will continue to care for one another. If you are in need of counsel or pastoral care, please call our church offices (833-942-3093). Please continue to check for updates on our website, getabundantlife.com, and also please continue to give your tithes and offerings (easytithe.com/alf) as we still have people, ministries and areas of the world that we support in addition to our church facility to care for. You can also mail any tithes and offerings to our church facility (P.O. Box 22 Boonville NY 13309).
For those people in our church family who do not have email or device access, we will be calling them to inform them of this decision.
The Lord bless you and keep you,
Pastor Brandon & MaeLeah
Friday March 13, 2020 (Previous Update)
I am writing to you with an update about how we are handling our current circumstances regarding the recent health precautions put in place by the authorities surrounding the Corona Virus. Please understand that this is a very evolving situation with many unknowns and uncertainties surrounding it, specifically about the recommendations that are being put in place for gatherings of groups our size. I have consulted with our eldership team and have established the following plan for this weekend.
I will start by reminding you of some thing we shouldn’t do. You should not be worried (Philippians 4:6-7). You should not be fearful (2 Timothy 1:7). These actions will not help in times like this. What you should do is pray (Philippians 4:6-7). You should walk in wisdom (Proverbs 4). You should remain at peace (John 16:33). We trust in the Lord our God, the maker of Heaven and Earth and regardless of what happens with this circumstance, we know who is the King of our Hearts. Based on recommendations from local, state and national health authorities, we have a few things that we are considering regarding our Sunday services. After this, I will list some precautions that should be practiced.
Please note that at this time we are planning to have our regular Sunday service. If you are someone who would be in a “high-risk” category we would encourage you to follow the recommended safety protocols put in place by the local government. To see who the people at higher risk are, please read here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html#who-is-higher-risk. We are taking more precautions with cleanliness at our facility, we will have hand-sanitizer available in our children’s wing and in the foyer.
Possible Considerations For Our Sunday Service (We will decide on the course of action on Saturday by 5pm)
Please note that these are listed from least extreme option to the most extreme option
Current Plan (Option 1). We will have our regular Sunday Service. This is our current plan.
Possible Option 2. We will have our regular Sunday Service split into two service. One would be at 10am and the other would be at 12pm. We would have the 10am service be for people whose last name is from A-K and the second service for people whose last names are from L-Z. This would split our gathering number in half, which is the recommendation of the NYS authorities at this time.
Possible Option 3. We would have our church meet in smaller, home group settings. This would be a church service style meeting in a home. This would lessen the number of people in attendance of course but would still provide the care and community that we receive by coming together.
Possible Option 4. We would have our services online. We would have a regular Sunday service, but you would enjoy it from your home. We would have the regular message, worship and announcements, but you would stream this from your computer. The Sunday service would be made available online by 2pm.
We will make a decision on this by Saturday at 5pm and will do our best to communicate this to our church family. We will post this on Facebook, on our website, send and email and call those who don’t have online service.
Please continue to check for updates on our website, getabundantlife.com, and also please continue to give your tithes and offerings (easytithe.com/alf) as we still have people, ministries and areas of the world that we support and also our church facility to care for. You can also mail any tithes and offerings to our church facility (P.O. Box 22 Boonville NY 13309)
What you can do (safety measures that are recommended by authorities at this time)
1. If you are sick, particularly with respiratory related illnesses, we ask that you stay home. Know that you are loved by your Abundant Life Church Family. Please enjoy our online services. If you have need of pastor care, please call myself, or the office and we will serve your needs.
2. Wash or sanitize your hands prior to entering the sanctuary. We have soap and dispensers in the children’s area as well as in the restrooms.
3. We will temporarily forgo physical contact, including hugging and handshakes during our service. This is a recommended measure by health officials.
4. Precaution and wisdom are important in times like this, but please fact check any source of information you read during this time. There is a lot of things online that are spreading misinformation and are fear inducing.
Many blessings to you and your family. We serve a good God who reigns in our hearts and on this earth.
Pastor Brandon & the Eldership Team