April 5, 2019
Dear Church Family & Friends,
This coming Sunday we will have a Fellowship Meal. Please bring one or more dishes of food to share with others! We also will celebrate communion, the Lord’s Supper as Jesus commanded us to. I am really looking forward to this Sunday. Last week, I felt as though something important happened. Several others including Carol also said that it seemed as if we (as a church) “turned a corner.” Although spiritual discernments are hard to describe I feel as though we are on an upward trend. God is raising up a people who will be the church in Western Albemarle County and people in our church family are responding to that call. The call of God for us includes attachment to one another, not just to a program or a meeting to truly to each other. God wants us to be marvelous friends who gather to love and BE friends to one another as well as gathering to DO ministry. This may be what is happening!
If all goes well, Clayton and I will have our have our new RCC website up and running before Saturday at noon. Please take a look at the beautiful new website that Clayton has so generously designed for us (after noon on Saturday!) We decided to renew the website in time time to connect with those who would be trying to access the sight from our Crozet Gazette ad that comes out today!
We also have an ad in the Crozet Gazette this month. This is one of several efforts that we are initiating to reach out in our community. If you get a chance, obtain a copy of the Gazette and share the invitation with neighbors to come for our Easter Sunday events!
Our Wednesday evening Revival Meeting with Dr. Jen Miskov from Redding California was amazing! It was incredible night of true worship and spiritual encounter with God. Many hearts were eternally affected. The church building was nearly full. Those who came seemed to be hungry and open to the move of God. It was clear to all present that God was empowering and moving in the meeting. The Revival Meeting began with prayer and an hour of worship led by Lauren Stonestreet and Jon Bannan. The building was full of the sound of passionate worship! Spontaneous expressions of worship, singing prayers and praise and clapping characterized this hour of encounter with God. The Presence of God was palpable in touching hearts and ministering in lives. Some people were on their knees, others were weeping. After this season of worship and a time of waiting on the Lord, announcements and offering, Jen stood up to begin sharing in ministry. She began by sharing briefly and then a season of waiting quietly on the Lord. An awe and wonder of God that filled the room. In this environment God raised our expectation for visitation and clarified our hearing of His voice. Jen then shared the Word; humbly, gracefully and clearly sharing about what it means to steward revival. For me, it was one of the clearest and timely messages I have every heard on this topic. Among the many points, Jen talked about what happens when revival comes; She told us that Revival is messy! She encouraged us to be open to the move of God in our lives no matter what! She shared that each move of God will be different with different people. Jen told us that just as they did in Jesus day, people will resist the supernatural move of God because the move of God is supernatural and not natural. Supernatural signs and wonders accompany the supernatural move of God. If they were natural, they would be exactly what we have been experiencing; what we have seen in the past. She explained that when a baby is born, when the “new life comes,” that it is messy! Other messy things come along with the baby. She encouraged us to expect that when revival comes (just like with every revival in the past) that some level of “mess” comes along with it. She encouraged us to “look for – and embrace the baby” and refrain from “throw out the baby” just because other messy things come along with the new life! This truly is a word for us in this hour.
As a student of revival in the past, I want to affirm what Dr. Miskov is proclaiming. When God does a new thing that it often seems distasteful in the religious context of it’s day. In fact, Revival ALWAYS has comes with events that call for faith and focus on God. The primary example of this is the ministry of Jesus. During Jesus ministry it was the habit of good people to resist what He said and did. They questioned his sabbath practices. They questioned his authority. They accused Him of being demon-possessed and doing miracles by the Devil’s power. Eventually they arrested Him and crucified Him as a disruption to the religious status quo. This is the pattern of Revival History. It ALWAYS starts with and upheaval of the religious status quo; someone doing supernatural things that make good religious people feel uncomfortable.
Consider Acts chapter two: The church gathering for prayer when God poured out supernatural signs and wonders that caused onlookers to accuse them of being drunk. It seems normal to think about this now. Just imagine how you might respond if the room was suddenly filled with the sound of wind blowing, tongues of fire come to rest on each person and then everyone begins to spontaneously blurt out gibberish (speaking in unknown tongues!!)
In 1775 Albemarle County was experiencing the powerful revivals of the First Great Awakening! During that time, a revivalist preacher, Devereux Jarratt was preaching loudly to large crowds. These crowds gathered on street corners, in fields… often standing in the rain. God signs and wonders followed happened during these meetings. In addition to the signs an wonders, it was the move of God that precipitated and informed the declaration of Independance from Britain in 1776. Jarratt was one of the most influential and prolific preachers during the first Great Awakening in Virginia.
In his diary Jarratt wrote:
“Some wept for grief; others shouted for joy … the people shouting with a great shout, so that it might be heard afar off. Occasionally, penitents stayed at the chapel all night long, praying and singing. Sometimes the meetings seemed to descend into chaos, with different people speaking all over the chapel, and some falling into catatonic trances.” Jarratt, like many moderate evangelicals, was afraid that attendees might seem more like a “drunken rabble, than the worshippers of God.” But he accepted the emotionalism, in general, as an unfortunate by-product of real revival. – from Encyclopedia Virginia Online by Thomas Kidd
The affect of God touching lives often produces mixed responses. History shows us that when God shows up in revival that unexplainable supernatural signs and wonders follow. Along with Jen, I want to invite all people who are praying for revival to understand what we are asking for! Our prayers for revival include giving God permission to do things in the way that He wants. We must keep our eyes on God and understand that byproducts of revival are messy! But the FOCUS for the revival must be maintained through it all. God is supernatural and His ways are supernatural. We must know that God is not primarily interested in our comfort. He is, however, very interested in revealing Himself with power among us. God is starting to break in to our area and region with awakening in our communities and revival in our churches! As members of the Body of Christ in this area, will we allow God to do what He wants when He comes? God is supernatural and He wants to show up in in supernatural ways! Isn’t this what we have been praying for?
I also want to invite everyone in our congregation to attend the meetings at Connect Church tonight (Friday, April 5th, 2080 Lambs Road, Charlottesville) Both men and women are invited to the meeting tonight. Tomorrow (Saturday) morning the Women Abide conference (for women only) starts at the same location. You can register online by clicking HERE. teaches revival history at Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry in Redding Ca. Jen Miskov is the Founding Director of Destiny House in Redding, Ca., author of books: “Walking on Water” and “Writing in the Glory” with Heidi Baker. She also has co-authored a book “Defining Moments” with Bill Johnson. She is an anointed speaker and teacher. Jen has a wealth of knowledge and speaks, teaches and writes about revival, intimacy with Jesus. Dr. Miskov received her Ph.D. in Revival History from the University of Birmingham, U.K.
I also wanted to announce that Madison Anderson will be participating a bake sale this coming Saturday (the 6th) from 12-4 at Great Value here in Crozet. She is raising money for PACEM as part of her “Passion Project” through her school. The money is not for the school, but for PACEM directly. Please consider supporting Madison and the group for this wonderful project. I received an email from Ryan this week. It appears that he can type! This is good news. Continue to prayer for Ryans healing. Also, If you would like to bless Ryan and Rebecca with a meal just click on this link: https://takethemameal.com/meals.php?t=OSLQ2541 to sign up! RCC is partnering with Life Journey church to provide meals for the family during this time of recovery.
On Good Friday, April 9th we will be joining with the Charlottesville House of Prayer for a special Good Friday Service at 7pm (to be held at 115 10th St. N.W. Charlottesville) in the Wellhouse Cafe building. This special service with be a commemoration of the Lords Supper with communion and a recognition of the amazing sacrifice of our Lord on the Cross. All are invite to attend!
Easter Sunday morning we will be joining with Hillsboro Baptist Church for a Sunrise Service at 7:30. Then we have a carry-in meal at 8:45 (at RCC) and then our Resurrection Celebration at 10am! Hillsboro Baptist Church is located at 6406 Hillsboro Lane in Crozet just off of Rt. 250 on the way in to Crozet less than 2 miles from our building. Pastor Jim and I are planning to work together on the service. I am excited about this opportunity to partner with our neighbors at Hillsboro! To attend this meeting, just park in the Hillsboro parking lot. The sunrise service will be held at 7:30 am in the area just behind the building.
We be partnering with The Dwelling Place for a Carry-in Meal at 8:30am and then we will have our Joint Resurrection Service at 10am. Please plan to bring a dish or two to share with other church family and members of the community! We want to invite everyone who does not have a home church to go to come to RCC this Easter!! Easter Sunday is the time of year when many people are interested in attending church. You may want to start asking them to come now!
Please reach out to your friends and neighbors to invite them to come for the events on Easter Sunday!
See you Sunday,