Christ’s Kids Starts on Sunday!!!

Christ’s Kids Starts on Sunday!!!

Announcements Christ's Kids

Christ’s Kids will be starting up again this Sunday, September 13th, at 10:30AM, and we are so excited!

What is Christ’s Kids? It’s a ministry that takes place during the Sunday worship-gathering hour at Ridgeview. It is for children from 6-months old to the 2nd grade. We exist to glorify God by coming alongside parents to help “train our children in the ways of the Lord” as we are commanded to do in Proverbs 22:6.

At Christ’s Kids we have teachers who LOVE Jesus and work hard to prepare lessons each Sunday that help the children grow in their knowledge of the Lord, and learn how they can live for Him. This year, all families must complete a Registration Sheet for their children, which includes a Covid-19 waiver. Click here to access that form. They will also be available Sunday morning at the check-in table.

Be sure to like and follow Christ’s Kids Facebook page for the latest info!  See you Sunday morning at 10:30! As always, we need helpers! If you are interested in teaching, leading music, or helping in any other way, please let us know.

On Sunday (May 10) We Gather

On Sunday (May 10) We Gather

Announcements

Dear Church Family,

On May 4, a new set of directed health measures went into effect for our area, and churches have been formally exempted from the 10-person limit on gatherings. Accordingly, we plan to gather together as a church on Sunday, May 10 at 10:30 AM. I can hardly wait. It feels like it has been years!

We will need to comply with a few conditions/stipulations from the authorities. So please note the following:

  1. The 6-foot Rule:
    1. Households are encouraged to sit together in the Worship Center, and maintain a seating distance of three seats from other households seated in the same row.
    2. Seating will be arranged with six feet of distance between the rows. Because most of the college students and all of the Job Corps students are presently away from Chadron, we believe we can use this method to both accommodate all who wish to come and also adhere to the distancing guidelines.
    3. Please do not congregate in the Worship Foyer and limit fellowship in high-traffic areas (entrances and exits). It might be better to fellowship outside, keeping six-feet apart.
    4. No nursery or child-care services will be provided. Parents, please keep your children with you, and help them comply with the 6-foot guidance.
    5. No coffee or beverage services will be available.
    6. Please avoid handshaking or hugging.
  2. The Lord’s Supper: we plan to observe the Lord’s Supper together. Special arrangements will be made so that the elements can be distributed while maintaining the social-distancing guidance.

Of course, if you are in an at-risk demographic, are constrained by work or quarantine requirements, or simply feel unsafe attending the meeting we would encourage you to stay home. We will still livestream the service so you can follow along from home. And we look forward to the day when all of us can gather together again.

I hope to see you this Sunday.

In Christ,

Pastor Mike, for the Elder Team

Why We Won’t Be Applying for Stimulus Assistance

Why We Won’t Be Applying for Stimulus Assistance

Announcements Word in Season

Recently, the President of the United States signed into law the CARES Act, known informally as the Coronavirus Relief Bill. There are many provisions in the bill that are intended to assist small businesses as well as faith-based groups like churches. The most relevant to Ridgeview is the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

Basically, this program makes it possible for churches to take out a loan equaling 250% of their monthly payroll. It is more assistance than loan, as the debt is 100% forgivable, so long as the funds are applied to the payroll and the payroll remains the same (no layoffs). Ridgeview researched this program with help from our primary banker and then we sought guidance from our elder team. On Sunday, the elders met to decide whether we will apply for this. And, as you can tell from the title of the post, we decided that we will not. For the good of the church, I think it is worth sharing our reasons.

First, no one on the elder team was convinced that we should participate in this program. Not all the elders were against it, but no one was clearly for it. And two of the elders felt strongly that we shouldn’t do this. To move ahead on something like this, we would need a strong and unified conviction that we should, and we are nowhere near that.

Second, while we do acknowledge that churches can trust God to supply for them AND also apply to these programs (seeing these programs as a means of God’s provision), we also believe that we can trust God to supply for the church through normal means; i.e., through the believers who make up this local church.

We believe that God would be more glorified by our looking to him alone to provide for our church through normal and biblical means – through the body of Christ.

Third, we feel that we, as a church, need to grow in our theology of giving. God calls us to be cheerful and sacrificial givers, not merely people who give out of our abundance or prosperity. These are trying times, but in these times we are not called to be any less cheerful or sacrificial in our giving. Taking advantage of this assistance would not help us grow in this area, and it could even hinder us, as we look to the government to do what God has called us to do.

Fourth, and most important, as an elder team we believe that God would be more glorified by our looking to him alone to provide for our church through normal and biblical means; through members of the body of Christ. Honestly, it would be easier for us to turn to this program, and it can feel more secure to do so. Yet God is not always honored when we take the easy path. He is glorified when we find our security and our rest in him alone. And more than anything, we want to glorify God.

None of this is to say anything about churches that decide differently than we did. We recognize that there are coherent and valid arguments for choosing to apply for these programs. These are simply our convictions, before the Lord. We also sincerely pray that many small businesses (especially local businesses) and individuals receive the help they need through the CARES Act.

For the Glory of Our Risen King,

Pastor Mike

Consider This…

Consider This…

Announcements

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. Hebrews 10:24

I recently preached a message at my church on Hebrews 10:24-25. This passage challenges believers to consider ways to stir up one another to love and good works by gathering together and encouraging each other. As a follow up, I thought it would be helpful to write some articles for the next couple of weeks to stimulate in our minds and hearts ways to encourage and stir up one another in our churches and communities. The purpose will be to study God’s Word and use our own creativity to find ways to practically live out this command from Hebrews 10:24. Hopefully this will be the first of several articles that can help us think of ways to outdo one another in love.

Bear With One Another

One phrase from the Apostle Paul that always makes me giggle a little is when he commands Christians to “bear with one another” or as the NIrV says in our modern lingo “put up with each other”. The quote is slightly laughable because it accurately presumes that we as humans are not always easy to get along with. A part of considering how to stir one another up in love and good deeds is being able to get over our differences.

This idea of bearing with one another comes from two verses in the writings of Paul: Colossians 3:13 and Ephesians 4:2.  Both passages are encouraging the church to love one another, and each has a slightly different focus. Let’s look at both passages, find the distinctives, and come to some practical ways we can use these truths to stir up one another.

Forgive One Another

The Colossians verse contains many ways believers are to live because they are in Christ. Paul points out in 3:11 that all differences we once had become moot under the truth that we are servants of Christ above all else. Neither race nor social class, neither profession nor political bent exist in Christ, when we are Christ’s he is in all and is all. Our difference are secondary to our unity in Jesus. 

In light of that we are to be humble, kind, meek, patient, and, as we are focusing on here, to bear with one another. Paul helps us to do this by commanding us to forgive each other as Christ has forgiven us. This is a great application for stirring up one another. What better way to encourage our community than to live everyday with a heart of forgiveness. In this time of fear and confusion many will say and do things that will harm us and others. As Christians, we will need to be ready to forgive and bear with those offenses. On the other hand, we can also seek forgiveness. We are not perfect. We have and will hurt others and need to be ready to seek forgiveness as well as give it. What a great way to stir up the church in love!

Eager to Maintain Unity

Ephesians 4:1-5 uses a lot of the same language as Colossians (humility, gentleness, patience), but it has a slightly different focus. In Ephesians, Paul is encouraging believers to eagerly bear with one another for the sake of unity in the Spirit. True unity in Christ does not come from having similar hobbies, careers, or movie preferences. It comes from having one Spirit. Verse 3 says our bond is that of peace – peace with God because of Christ’s sacrifice. We are united in our common salvation through the savior. Therefore we should be eager to maintain that unity because it was bought with a price.  We can bear with one another because Christ bore our sins on the cross. 

Practically speaking, we should be a people who are visibly eager. Eager to make Christ known, eager to love fellow believers in spite of our differences, and eager to keep the body united. What does this eagerness look like? Call someone who you have not seen since last time you met in person. Message someone who you do not normally talk to because you run in different circles. The bond of peace that we share with fellow believers is one that we should eagerly hold on to by bearing with all differences and barriers that seem to keep us apart.

You have probably heard the old adage “blood is thicker than water.” We use it to express how much more important family is than normal friendships.. However, I have been told that this idiom comes from an older saying that goes something like: “the blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb.” What a great truth? The bond that we have in Christ’s blood is deeper and stronger than any other. May we be a people willing to bear with one another in order to keep that bond and stir each other up to love and good works in the name of Christ. 

Our New House-Church Movement

Our New House-Church Movement

Announcements Word in Season

How I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house… – Acts 20:20

Christians and house churches go way back. Some of the earliest churches met in homes. Even today, many Christians meet in homes. And now, at least for a while, we will too.

Today, the Governor of Nebraska restricted all public gatherings to no more than 10 people. This restriction will remain in place for at least two weeks, but possibly much longer. Obviously, this makes it imprudent for us to continue meeting as we normally have.

Thus, the church leadership has developed a plan for us to still meet, while also complying with the law. And that plan involves meeting in homes.

Every Sunday at 10AM (Update: Beginning, Lord-willing on March 29), Ridgeview members and attenders are invited to one of several homes (click here to sign up to attend a group). The groups will each have a leader and will worship and pray together. And then, at 10:45, the groups will all watch a message preached live in one of the groups, and broadcast via Facebook Live.

Those in greater danger of COVID-19 and others who feel safer by sheltering-in-place might choose not to meet at one of these groups (and that is totally fine!). You can still catch the sermon online. If you need any help arranging this, please contact us and someone would be glad to walk you through it.

Many people will see these things as very negative developments, and in some ways they are. These are hard times! Yet, we see so many opportunities to love the church, to see people discipled, to evangelize the lost, to develop new leaders, to serve one another, and to glorify God as a unified church meeting in diverse locations. It’s true: for a time we are not able to gather together as the full local expression of the body of Christ that Ridgeview is. Yet we can still meet, freely and without persecution. We just have to meet in smaller groups. We are very blessed.

And Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Check back here later this week for more specific information. Also, sign up for Remind (text @rbcchadron to 81010), and check out our Facebook page for the latest developments. Everything in this post – except for God 🙂 – is subject to change as things change and develop in our state and nation.

Ridgeview & the Coronavirus

Ridgeview & the Coronavirus

Announcements

As a church leadership it is important for us to consider the physical safety of our people, as well as our spiritual needs. It is also important to neither panic, nor scoff when it comes to public health scares like the coronavirus pandemic. We don’t panic, because our hope is in God. We take seriously verses like Philippians 4:6-7:

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

We don’t scoff because we are called to be wise. To that end we have formed a team to oversee our precautions and form a plan of response as this health concern comes closer to home. At this point, we have not cancelled any regularly scheduled events. Our posture is to proceed with caution.

The caution we want to proceed with is in the following recommendations and decisions:

  1. We recommend that those who are elderly or who suffer from respiratory issues consider staying home should cases appear in Chadron. From the medical advice we have received, these demographics are at the greatest risk. We plan to live-stream our services so that you can log on and not completely miss out. Also, if you decide to stay home, please let an elder or deacon know so that we can show better care to you during this time.
  2. We recommend that we avoid handshaking (etc.) at our public gatherings until this concern has past. Maybe the famous elbow bump (click here to see what I mean) is in order.
  3. We recommend washing hands regularly and taking advantage of the hand sanitizer stations (which are now very limited, due to the demand).
  4. We decided that will not be serving coffee or hot drinks for the next few weeks. The coffee station is a common place of touch, as people pump the coffee canisters and cream, etc. We will continue to offer free bottled water.
  5. We recommend signing up for Remind to get the very latest information from the church concerning event scheduling, cancellations, etc.. To do that, just text @rbcchadron to 81010.

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Let’s do what we can to love one another, love our neighbors and make much of Christ during this difficulty, for the glory of God!

Church… Honestly, it’s for Everyone!

Church… Honestly, it’s for Everyone!

Announcements

Ridgeview Bible is a featured church on MyBridge Radio this month! They will be highlighting how God is moving in our church on 105.3, and we have an opportunity to share how God is moving here, too! They’ll be featuring Ridgeview Bible on their website, mybridgeradio.net, where you can leave a review, sharing your Ridgeview Bible story (click here for link)! We encourage you to share a review, and invite a friend to try the church that you love by having them tune in at 9:30ᴀᴍ every Sunday in March, when one of our most-requested sermons will be airing.

New Year, New Shepherding Plan

New Year, New Shepherding Plan

Announcements

It is a new year, and the elders and deacons of Ridgeview are implementing a plan to show better care to ALL the members of Ridgeview. It is pretty simple, but we think it will help a lot.

We have grouped the membership list alphabetically and assigned each member to a deacon or an elder. We’ll keep these assignments for 3 months, and then rotate the list. So, every Ridgeview member will have an elder or deacon praying specifically for them all the time. And every 3 months, a new leader will be praying for you!

Don’t be surprised if a church leader reaches out to you to find out how you are doing and how they can pray for you or help you. It is our hope that this will help members and church leaders to get to know one another better!

Please keep praying for the elders and deacons as we seek to shepherd the congregation well, with love and humility; for the good of the church and the glory of God.

Note: As always, members are welcomed and encouraged to contact any elder or deacon with their needs. You can find the elder & deacon contact info in the weekly bulletin. Also, each church leader will continue to be responsible to shepherd every member, not only the ones assigned to them each quarter. This plan is an added bit of structure to help us do that better.

The Church Needs the Church

The Church Needs the Church

Announcements Word in Season

The church needs the church. Not just on Sunday to help with Sunday school, potluck, greeting newcomers, nursery care, or worship. The church needs the church for everyday life. And if you haven’t noticed, life can be hard in our fallen world. We groan with all creation at the fallen-ness of this world and the effects it has on our lives (Romans 8:23). 

Conflict in relationships, health struggles, financial unknowns, child rearing, disabilities, marriage challenges, injustices at our workplace, death, addiction, and the list goes on. Christians and non-Christians alike are needy people. The difference is where we go to address those needs. As Christians we turn to God, our loving Father, and cry out to him with our needs. And then we turn to the body of Christ, in our local church, or at least we should. God is gracious to provide the body, our family of brothers and sisters, to help each other as we walk through life. 

Ed Welch explains this well (Side by Side, p.11):

We were meant to walk side by side, an interdependent body of weak people. God is pleased to grow and change us through the help of people who have been re-created in Christ and empowered by the Spirit. That is how life in the church works.

Christ has commanded us to love one another (John 13:34). He is speaking about the family of Christ loving each other. This love must be visible to the world as our love and care for each other in the body becomes a witness to others of our love for Christ (John 13:35). We all have a responsibility within the body to do this. This is what it means to be a disciple and to disciple others. 

It is critically important that we do this well for one another not only because Christ commanded it, but also because the world cannot offer the help the body can offer to each other. Our hearts and minds have been transformed by the gospel. The gospel and God’s Word radically shapes how we think, feel, and deal with all of those hardships listed above. 

But how? We need wisdom on how to love each other well. I highly encourage you to join the 13-week class on Discipleship/Counseling, on Sunday Mornings, 9-10 a.m. (during Sunday School hour) beginning January 12, 2020. You can sign up here

I need you and you need me. The church needs the church. 

New Class on Biblical Counseling

New Class on Biblical Counseling

Announcements

The Ridgeview elders invite you to join us for a 13-week class on Discipleship/Counseling, on Sunday Mornings, 9-10 a.m. (during Sunday School hour) beginning January 12, 2020.

This class is about how to deal with life’s issues and to help others work through difficult things. Topics include: the Sufficiency of Scripture, Comparison of Approaches, Marriage, Child-rearing, Anger, Depression, Sexual Sin, Suffering, and Communication.

In a sense, we are all counselors. Let’s learn how to be good counselors, equipped to provide answers that will help us and the people around us grow into maturity.

The sign-up sheet will be in the Worship Center Lobby this Sunday, or you can sign up online by clicking here (click here).

If you have questions, make sure to talk to Kassy Herbert or Maya Johnson.