Daily Update from Pastor David March 16, 2020
Monday, March 16
Update & Prayer Notes
Yesterday the Elders met during our regular service time to pray and plan in the midst of the ever-changing realities of Covid-19. We will attempt to communicate on a daily basis the situation and how it relates to Burnett Fellowship.
Services canceled for the next three weeks. While we do not know how quickly we will again be able to assemble, we are hopeful that it might coincide with Easter Sunday, and that, by God’s grace, we can meet again on April 12.
Online Services: For the next few weeks we plan to stream a Sunday service. We can share a “virtual” sense of community if we watch this in our respective homes at the same time—our 10:00 am service time.
Serving Others: We would hope to use this time to serve others, first within our Burnett family, and then in the community of Maple Ridge. Should you be aware of needs, please contact the office. Staff will be keeping office hours. If you can help serve our church and community, please let us know.
Pray for impact: Some of our seniors are now isolated. We are aware of some who have been laid off work. Let us pray those most impacted, be it loss of health, loss of companionship, loss of employment, or other loss.
Generous Giving: Even through we are not meeting together, ministry goes on. In fact, ministry needs will increase as the church rises to help our faith and neighbourhood communities. Please give regularly and generously as you are able during this time. You may find the easiest way is through the website.
Hope: God is still on His throne! He rules. He is in control of all things.
Each day as part of my devotional reading I look up what happened on the date in the past. Yesterday I read the following story and was reminded that, when life is toughest, God remains sufficient.
1God is our refuge and strength,
a helper who is always found in times of trouble.
2Therefore we will not be afraid,
though the earth trembles
and the mountains topple into the depths of the seas,
3though its water roars and foams and the mountains quake with its turmoil.
[and even though a pandemic sweeps our world!] —Psalm 46:1-3
Quaker evangelist, Mary Bray Pryor felt called to preach the Gospel in America following the marriage of her last child. In fact, she was certain God was telling her to take passage on a boat named Fame which was in terrible shape. Her son, who worked for the insurance company Lloyds, pleaded with her not to sail on the leaky ship. Again she asked the Lord, and felt convinced he wanted her on that boat. She was over sixty.
God's purpose soon was clear. The ship sprang a serious leak. Sailors and passengers worked the pumps night and day to keep it afloat. This effort continued for several weeks as the ship made slow sailing. All became exhausted. The Captain drowned himself in drink. But Mary's constant prayers and words of assurance put heart in the men.
They were ready to quit when Mary came from her cabin, promising that God had shown her all would be rescued that very day if only they worked the pumps a few more hours. She even named the ship that would rescue them: the Archibald. However, water was now entering faster than they could pump it out. The ship began to sink.
Remakably, within the two hours, the Archibald was spotted as Mary had promised. It was just a small fishing boat and short of water, and the coast of America still 600 miles away. But the fishermen agreed to reduce their own water rations and they crammed the Fame's entire crew and passengers aboard.
Mary landed in Philadelphia on March 15, 1798. Immediately, she fell to the ground. A friend who had met her at the ship, thought she had stumbled and he leaned over to help her up. But a passenger, recognizing that she was kneeling to pray stopped him from pulling her to her feet. The Captain, the crew and the passengers gathered around her, removing their hats as she poured out her heart in thanks to God.
Pray: God is in control and He is sovereign. This world-wide pandemic can be an opportunity for our faith to captivate and change the world. As we fall on our knees, God will answer. And God will be honoured. We may well look back and realize this was the church’s finest hour.