Letter from Pastor Willam – April 2020
Dear Church Family and Friends of Bethany
It has been almost four months since we last communicated on this platform. I trust that this letter finds all of you in good health. We certainly miss you and miss having church as an assembly.
The talk of the town these days is health and healthy living especially now that we found ourselves lockdown as per government instruction, until the end of April for us in South Africa. The rest of the world has similar setups and rules in place to ensure the safekeeping and health of its citizens.
Suddenly moving overseas does not look so attractive any longer. We do not seem safe anywhere else, no matter what the geographical location. The virus has captivated the lives and the attention of most people on the planet. I want to make use of the opportunity to offer sincere condolences to those of you who might have lost a loved one or friends that you know that suffered because of this virus. Please be there for friends and family. The insecurities that people experience are also an opportunity to comfort, encourage and to show support on many different levels. Contact those you know, especially the vulnerable, feed the hungry and pray for everyone that you know during this time. The truth is, God our Father cares for each one of us. He is trustworthy in good times and in bad.
I am sure that you have noticed the openness of people towards spiritual things during this time. Yes, our jobs matter and yes, our financial challenges are difficult and even daunting, but the reality of looming death and the regular daily updates on the media platform does not make it easier for any of us. People think about eternity, life and even death at this time. On the one hand is this a good thing as it takes our attention away from this world and the things of this world and it creates an opportunity to consider God. It is unfortunately also a playground or should I say fertile soil for bad seeds to be sown into people’s lives, as they are vulnerable. Please be the sound voice of truth for the enquiring minds and searching hearts. It is for times like this that we need to be ready. 1 Pet 3:15 comes to mind… ‘always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.’ Many will not have such opportunities again to give them access to a loving God and Saviour.
Its unfortunate times and circumstances but I can only imagine how the Lord must smile on all of us while we are ‘locked up’ in our homes. People that does not usually eat together or even talk to each other are now forced to face each other and willing or not, to hear from each other. We pray that eyes, ears and hearts will open to the value and preciousness of each role-player in our families. Family has always been Gods heart for all of us. Here on earth and most certainly in heaven above. This is what God had in mind in that famous Our Father prayer. May our hearts be knit together with our earthly families. At the same time is it an opportune time and season to hear from God and to connect with Him as your Father and friend. The lack of time is suddenly not an excuse any longer. May the future testify of a life changing divine intervention during this time of lockdown… with God and His Word.
Church via Video
Who would have thought that we would have been forced to re-invent church without assembling in one place? Our focus is the church locally and the Kingdom eternally. Suddenly, the media team had to spring into action. Special thanks to each member of the media team. Thanks especially for the support and excitement of the church to buy into this new platform and new season of ministering to more than just ourselves. The feedback from all over the world is overwhelming. One of the video messages have been watched more than 520 .times. I trust God that we can continue using this platform even when the lockdown rules are changed or eliminated altogether.
We do however need extra equipment to continue this type of recording from the church platform. We were fortunate that we could use Brett’s Personal Computer and we improvised with lights from our home to have a quality product. Kindly help us so we can purchase lights and a PC/Laptop that is suitable for editing and setting up video live streaming of our services. The effort and skill to edit such recordings are very laborious and time consuming. Hours of work goes into every video shooting before and especially after the recording. We are in our baby shoes with this new venture but trust God to do the best with what we have.
I will be writing regular blogs on our website and want to invite you to start engaging with us on that platform as well. I will give summarized versions of sermons as well as words that the Holy Spirit laid on my heart. In this way, you can both watch, listen and read the things that God spoke to us during this time. I will be sending one such writing today to be on the website. See www.bethanychristianchurch.org.za.
May the Lord expand and personalize these writings and messages to you and through you as you share the good news to others during these trying times. I have learned that you can only feed others spiritually, if Jesus our Lord has fed you.
Together in His Service.
Ps William Coraizin