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Longing for uninterrupted worship forever

Dear Grace Family,

I hope you are staying well and having a good week! I was saddened that we were not able to worship over our normal Zoom call this past Lord’s Day. Apparently, there was a problem on Zoom’s end (several other churches also experienced similar issues). Hopefully you saw the sermon on Facebook live. If you missed it, you can find it on Facebook or Sermon Audio.

It seems like Zoom has fixed the problem, so we will continue to meet on Zoom over the next few weeks as we wait on further updates from Baltimore County related to meeting in person. Please keep the session, deacons, and staff in prayer as we plan for what worship will look like when we do return.

If for any reason Zoom does not work in the meantime, we will use Facebook live as a backup option.

However, the timing was curious, wasn’t it? Of all the days and times for Zoom to malfunction, I am sure it was no coincidence that this problem happened on the Lord’s Day morning as churches around the country were preparing to worship the risen Christ. It certainly felt like a spiritual attack, because there is nothing that Satan loves more than to keep people from worshiping the Lord.

Jesus reigns (Ps. 2), and he has defeated Satan through his death and resurrection (Col. 2:15). Satan’s doom is sure, but he is determined to go down swinging – and the Lord lets him land a punch now and then.

Indeed, he prowls around like a lion, seeking someone to devour (1 Pt. 5:8). But make no mistake – he is no match for the Lion of Judah, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world (Rev. 5:5-6, Jn. 1:29)! Satan is bound, like a dog on a leash (Rev. 20:1-3). He can still wreak havoc and cause great pain in our world, but he is unable to deceive the nations and to keep the gospel from going out to the ends to the earth. He has no power to stop the Holy Spirit from calling people from every tongue, tribe, and nation and bringing them to Jesus.

In this season of disruption, whether we are faced with a minor inconvenience or an overwhelming and tragic loss, we must remember (as Revelation 4-5 encourages us) to view all of life from the perspective of the Throne of God. Our God is in the heavens and he does all that he pleases (Ps. 155:3). Christ IS reigning and he is actively subduing his enemies as he rules and defends his church.

I’m sure that I am not alone in admitting that I don’t always understand why the Lord works in the ways he does, but Scripture reassures us that he knows what he is doing. His ways are perfect (Ps. 18:30)!

It may not always look like God is in control, but appearances can be deceiving. In spite of all the evil in our world – whether sin or natural evil, like sickness and natural disasters – Jesus is still working ALL THINGS for the good of those who love him (Rm. 8:28). And even better than that, he has promised that one day he will return. And when he does, he will wipe away every tear from our eyes and we will see him face to face and be with him in uninterrupted worship forever (Rev. 21:1-4). Let’s long for that day and keep praying together, “Come, Lord Jesus!”

In Christ,

Pastor Eric