Greetings beloved family of Common Ground,

I so miss all of you, in person, in public, flesh and blood, real human togetherness. I pray no one is getting comfortable in living as we are today.  I hope no one is getting too relaxed or even lazy in this unreality church scene today.  Beloved, virtual church is not virtually church.  What we are doing is trying to stay connected as best we can during this quarantine. 

Pray that God would soon restore us as the body of Christ gathered together in sweet fellowship and heartfelt worship in Word, Sacrament, and Prayer.   We belong together and need one another.  I love this definition of a true church immediately following the Apostle Peter’s sermon on Pentecost as found in Acts 2:41-42 So those who accepted his message were baptized, and that day about three thousand people were added to them. 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer.”

I want to lovingly challenge all of you to be devoted in reading and studying God’s Word, stay hungry and thirsty in prayer, look for creative ways to contact one another via phone, FaceTime, sending an email, actually writing a letter and sending it by mail, driving over and saying hello from the sidewalk or car.  And continue to look for gospel opportunities for lost loved ones.  Beloved, keep focused on Christ as His grace and mercy abound in each one of our lives!

Please consider how you can help people in need within our church family as well as those outside of our church family.  Many have lost their income to provide for their families during this shutdown.  The food shelf is an excellent way to serve others.  I also just received the following as seen below:

Hi Gary!  I hope that you are doing well!  I have been looking for ways that churches can connect with refugees and immigrants during this time of “Shelter in Place.”  Yesterday I heard of a way that people can get involved through the internet.  The East St. Paul SALT Site is looking for people 18 and older who can help children and youth with their homework online.  There are a number of Somali families who have requested help.  Volunteers are asked to connect with the students once or twice a week for an hour in the evenings.  There is also a need for volunteers to tutor women in English. If a potential volunteer has questions, they should contact Bill Cameron at 651-587-4205 or  bcameron1959@gmail.com.  Before a person can volunteer, they need to fill out an Arrive Ministries volunteer application at https://www.volgistics.com/ex/portal.dll/ap?AP=2002757235 .  Please contact me if you have any questions.  Thank you for your time and consideration.  May the Lord continue to bless you and use you!  

Rick Wallace
Site Coordinator | Envision Twin Cities
651-208-5876
rick@envisiontwincities.org

Please send me any prayer requests no matter how big or small so that we as a family of Common Ground can lift each up in holy, heartfelt, God-glorifying prayer!  I have yet to receive a single prayer request from anyone, except Chris R. 

Making Much of Jesus!!!

Pastor Gary