Issue dated 19 March 2020
Dear New Lifers,
Everyday Covid-19 is on the news. The Yang Di-Pertuan Agung has decreed that the restriction in movements be observed by everyone, not only church people. In this letter, I am urging our folks in NLRC churches to make use of this time of restriction of movement to build your family spiritually.
This virus will pass. If we do not use this time to build ourselves and our family we’ve wasted this opportunity. We think we can go back to our former lifestyle. But this world is not going to be the same again. There are changes due to the pandemic. Economics, border security, daily buying and selling, travels & global controls, they have all moved from the status quo; just like 9-11.
With COVID-19 the world is shaken. The Stock Exchange, norms of life, money values, and religious practices, they are all shaken. Hebrews 12:26-29 says that only God’s kingdom cannot be shaken. The kingdom of God is invisible but it is in the realm of light and life and it’s an immovable kingdom. We must train our family to be strong in the Lord in the face of adversity. I urge all leaders and Pastors of NLRC to work together on building our people in faith in the Lord Jesus as an unshakeable force in this hour and hereon. It is a time of concerted unity, inter-dependent as the Body of Christ because this invisible battle is won by the power of faith and prayer in the invisible yet superior kingdom of God. Heed what experts are saying about prevention and what if COVID-19 happens around you. However, step up to a higher spiritual gear of prayer power. Turn up the Spirit’s heat to burn the enemy. (I heard heat destroys the virus).
Not having church service is something we have to face – for at least two weeks. But in this time we can turn up the heat of our family prayer altar. Parents gather your children and pray. Pray at least Psalm 91 over your family, church families, pastors and leaders, school friends, nurses, doctors, the nation, and whoever the Holy Spirit may impress upon you to pray. It may save someone’s life.
I saw the role of parents in spiritual nurture of the family and called it “Kingdom Family”. To my joy I later found out that John Wesley and Charles Spurgeon had spoken of the same thing. A friend said this morning that my book published in 2016 is prophetic. I think so but only out of instinct. I had said that the shape of the church may change in the years to come. Today, we have no choice but re-think church. Spurgeon called the family a “little church”. The Catholics in Vatican II in 1962-65 described family as ‘domestic church’. These people saw God’s heart on what really mattered. It is spiritually strong families that defeat the invisible enemy in this world. We can use this opportunity to start this family movement of powerful praying families that are strong in biblical awareness. In short, let us have family prayer altar and Bible reading with faith declarations.
Pastor Ron has written a sample “home church service”. I believe this template is useful for all. Use it for a start. You may creatively land on something that suits your family best. Note these elements: a time of worship, read the Word, prayer, sharing, reflection, testimonies and Holy Communion. Young and old participate in the spiritual activity. There is no star preacher. Dad and mum are facilitators and their legal spiritual authority in itself is good enough for faith to conduct the spiritual activity at home. Do listen to my short sermons on the series “Heaven in your Home”. I believe they will help you.
Pastor Jeremiah Yap
Group Senior Pastor
New Life Restoration Churches