Weekly Update on 9/6/2020

Dear CCGR Family,
 
We continue to be blessed with being able to worship virtually in our homes, with ongoing deep appreciation to Boyd Lowry for recording CCGR’s weekly church services.
Please take a look back over the below last couple of weeks’ service recordings, and hear once again to the inspiring messages shared.
In addition to Pastor Terry’s weekly messages, we are thankful to Janet Montroy and the blessings of the beautiful music she shares with us…her talented gifts on the organ and piano, and for bringing us such wonderful guest soloists and instrumentalists.
How grateful are we having had Reverend Phyllis Palsma back again while Pastor Terry was away.
Community Church of Glen Rock Sunday Worship Service: August 23, 2020
Led by Reverend Terry O’Brien  https://youtu.be/OHRi5Z_1PaM
Scripture – Matthew 7:7-12 (Reader: Bruce Beal)
Organ Prelude: “Crown Him With Many Crowns” (arranged by Michael Burkhard)
(Janet Montroy)
Vocal Solo: “Make Me a Channel of Your Peace” (arranged by Sebastian Temple)
(Rusty Obra, Tenor)
Piano Solo after Sermon: “Here I Am, Lord” (arranged by Mark Hayes)
(Janet Montroy)
Community Church of Glen Rock Sunday Worship Service: August 30, 2020
Led by Reverend Phyllis Palsma https://youtu.be/KdCfoEeABKE
Scripture – Exodus 3:1-13 (Reader: Laura Bird Bennett)
Organ Prelude, Piano Solo, Organ Solo, Postlude
(Janet Montroy)
As Bruce Beal shared with us on August 23rd in his scripture reading from Matthew about “Asking, Seeking, & Knocking”, Jesus encourages us to continue to pursue God, despite assumptions that He hasn’t answered prayers for our ‘wants and our needs’. God will respond with what He thinks is best for us, in His timing, and we are encouraged to have patience, wisdom, and understanding that all His responses are out of His love for us. And we have the Holy Spirit to help us through that.
God wants us to be focused on the ‘today’ of our lives (the ‘happy todays’ and the ‘troubled todays), with Jesus reminding us “Do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will bring worries of its own.” Realizing hardships are a part of life, we must trust that God will bring us through our ‘today’s’ — to appreciate what we have in our ‘todays’, and that He is there with us, and will be there for all our ‘tomorrows’. Believing that God keeps His promises and that He is there for us, will help us grow stronger in our faith and gain peace within ourselves. Hardships will be handled with God’s help and protection, and as long as we wait and have faith, we’ll grow to trust more and be less doubtful.
But the main thing God wants us to have more of is time with Him — time spent with Him, to grow to have trust in Him, and to grow to gain wisdom to ‘do to others as you would have them do to you”. With God as the center of your days, you’ll have His love and guidance each step of the way.

Particularly beautiful during this 8/23 worship was Janet’s “Here I Am, Lord” piano rendition; it inspired me to look deeper into the background of the hymn. You may find this information interesting, as well.
I also found this beautiful YouTube video version you might want to follow along with.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K6fYAiqV-Bs
You may follow along with either Janet’s piano rendition, and/or the Youtube version. (See lyrics below.)
The Story Behind “Here I Am, Lord”
“Here I Am, Lord”, also known by its first line, “I, the Lord of sea and sky”, is a Christian hymn written by the American composer Dan Schutte in 1981. Its lyrics are inspired by the Bible verses Isaiah 6:8 and 1 Samuel 3 as this powerful song is a testament to Schutte’s Godly devotion. The chorus speaks of his dedication stating, “I will go, Lord, if you lead me” emphasizing the motives of humility and a willingness to act in accordance with the Lord’s will. May you be encouraged by the brilliant words and melody of this wonderful hymn!”
“Dan Schutte, the hymn’s author, never assumed the tune would become so well-known. Mr. Schutte was a Jesuit in his early thirties learning theology in Berkeley, California when one of his friends requested him to compose a song for a forthcoming ordaining Mass of deacons.
Schutte has stated that he frequently used Scripture as the foundation of his songs, so as he thought about the concept of being called for the ordaining Mass, he looked to the stories of the prophets, like Jeremiah, who asked God to bestow him with the best words to use.
Schutte describes his inspiration of the chorus as, “In all those stories, all of those people God was calling to be prophets have expressed in one way or another their humanness or their self-doubt.”
This biblical sense of doubt joined with counsel from the other St. Louis Jesuits was the reason Mr. Schutte altered the lyrics from a certain “Here I am, Lord; here I stand, Lord” to the self-doubting ultimate version: “Here I am, Lord; is it I, Lord?”

I, the Lord of sea and sky, I have heard My people cry. All who dwell in dark and sin, My hand will save. I who made the stars of night, I will make their darkness bright. Who will bear My light to them? Whom shall I send? Here I am Lord, Is it I Lord? I have heard You calling in the night. I will go Lord, if You lead me. I will hold Your people in my heart. I, the Lord of wind and flame, I will tend the poor and lame. I will set a feast for them, My hand will save Finest bread I will provide, Till their hearts be satisfied. I will give My life to them, Whom shall I send? Here I am Lord, Is it I Lord? I have heard You calling in the night. I will go Lord, if You lead me. I will hold Your people in my heart.


The hymn begins with the verse:
I, the Lord of sea and sky
I have heard my people cry
All who dwell in dark and sin
My hand will save
What a powerful reminder of God’s power! There is so much truth in the opening to this song. The Bible tells us that God is the Lord over the seas and sky:
6 You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you.  (Nehemiah 9:6 )
The Bible also explains that He listens to our cries:
I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God (Psalm 40:1-3).
The Bible also reminds us that God will save us from darkness and our sins!
13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves (Colossians 1:13)
The chorus is a response to the Lord’s calling us into action! It is not enough to simply hear the word of God. he wants us to act! He wants us to serve Him and each other.
Here I am, Lord. Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night
I will go, Lord, if you lead me
I will hold your people in my heart
The next verse speaks to God’s might and His promises. He is so powerful that he made the stars in the Heavens. So we can trust when He says He will make the darkness bright.
I, who made the stars of night
I will make their darkness bright
Who will bear my light to them?
Whom shall I send?
The final verse speaks to the resurrection. Only our Father who loves us so much would send His son to earth to sacrifice His very life so that we may live. He truly did bear our pain! In the shortest verse in the Bible it is simply written, Jesus wept. (John 11:35)
I, the Lord of snow and rain
I have borne my people’s pain
I have wept for love of them
They turn away
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As many of us continue to remain close to home during this time — or take precautions when we do venture out —  we ask that you continue to keep each other in prayer. 
Please continue to pray for our church members, families, and those close to us who have shared a special part of our lives — 
Please continue to pray for Doris, sons Rob, Eric, and Mark and all the Van Ostenbridge family for the recent loss of Bob — a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, and faithful friend to so many.
 
Our ongoing prayers continue for Anne Allen & Family (including Anne’s daughters, Liz & family and Sara & Boyd Lowry & Family); Ed Archbold; Rich Balch & family (on the recent passing of Rich’s Mother, Eleanor); Laura Bird-Bennett & Family; Okey Chenoweth & Family (on the recent passing of Jane); Rich Dethmers; Beryl Ferrari; Jean Franklin; Terry Gilligan & Family; Colleen Janssen & Family; Eric Lundquist & Family; Connie Sinkway and the Sinkway/Emery Family;  Rev. Jerry Wright and his family; Barbara Zucchino & Family; the Ruth Rankin Leaper Family.
 
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In addition, please keep all those whose lives have been affected and lost by the blazing ravaging wildfires in Northern California; and
those whose lives have been lost and devastated from the severe damages caused by Hurricane Laura in Louisiana and Texas (and Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.) Many of us have family and/or friends in these parts of the country.
 
We pray that God continues to strengthen, comfort, and provide for all who have lost loved ones, their homes or vehicles, special heirlooms in these disasters and that aid is provided in helping to put lives back together.
 
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Two of our church families are sending their young adults off to college for the first time —  Caitlin O’Brien (University of Delaware) and Angelina Monti (Stockton University) — and we ask that you remember them in prayer. As many of us know, anticipation of being a college freshman is exciting, yet stirs up mixed emotions and can create anxiety for both students and their families. During these unprecedented times, as we continue to navigate COVID-19, we especially ask that you keep these young women and their families in prayer and that they adapt safely to their new lives away from Glen Rock.
Suggested prayers for parents to pray for our college students during this time:
 
Lord, as my child embarks on his/her college years, we ask that You would guide and protect him/her. College is an amazing time, but it’s also a time when many young people become unfocused on their faith and divert their attention to following their peers. Please protect him/her. Please guide him/her to make the right decisions when it comes to peer pressure, partying and other negative influences. Please also help him/her to be a witness in the classroom and out of the classroom. I also ask that You would help him/her to seek Your will. In Jesus’ name, Amen
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We also ask that you keep all our children, youth and young adults in prayer as they head back to elementary, middle and high school in a few weeks (whether it be in person or virtually), as well as our college undergrads and recent graduates as they move forward with their education and future. We also pray for their teachers whose lives have been dramatically changed as well.
Suggested prayers for parents to pray for students entering elementary, middle, and high school during this challenging time:
 
Elementary School-Age:
“Lord, please bless our child. We ask in this back-to-school prayer that You give him/her strength and courage to be away from his family — and that You sustain and guide him/her as he/she learns and grows. We ask that You protect and be with him/her this school year and that You equip us as parents to help guide him/her. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Middle School-Age:
“God, as my child heads toward middle school I pray that You would guide him/her. There are new pressures coming as high school approaches. I ask that you protect my child’s heart and mind. Help him/her to focus on You and to remember You in his/her interactions with others. I also pray that You would help him/her to find the right friends and influences. Please guide me as a parent as I navigate the middle school waters and help guide my child.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.” 
High School-Age:
“Lord,  Please guide our family and protect our child throughout these high school years. I pray that You protect him/her against peer pressure, and that You help him/her to take his/her studies seriously. Peer pressure concerns me, especially in a culture that embraces so many values that contradict what we have tried to follow in our family. Please protect him/her as he/she navigates the waters of high school. I am so grateful for the ways in which You have guided my life and I pray You do the same for my child. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.”
Praying for Students, Teachers, and FamiliesClipart.jpgAnd, A Prayer for our Teachers:
Lord, I recognize that prayer for teachers is essential. Please help my child’s teacher(s) have strength and perseverance this upcoming school year. I ask that You would also give clarity so that he/she can focus on academics and imparting knowledge and wisdom on the children. Please help the school year to move smoothly for everyone this year. In Jesus name, Amen.
During these stressful times, we pray that God walks alongside these parents and students, and teachers, to reassure them of His presence and His peace.
 CCGR PRAYER RESOURCES – 
 
Are you looking for a quite place to pray, or others to pray for you?
 
CCGR’s sanctuary continues to be open for prayer and meditation each Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Please feel free to come by anytime during these hours, in the quietness and peaceful solitude of our church. Feel free to stay as long as you’d like. Know that all precautions have been taken to make our sanctuary a safe place. Please use the entrance/exit doors adjacent to the Memorial Garden.
 
For those more ‘private’ prayer requests, it gives us comfort knowing our church has a small group ‘CCGR Prayer Chain’. We share prayer needs in confidence on a regular basis those prayers shared with us that you would like to be kept private. If you have a need for prayer that you feel you would like us to share confidentially amongst the small group Prayer Chain, please email requests to Candy Hall at candy.hallccgr@gmail.com and Donna Nihen at blackvelvet1299@aol.com, and of course, Pastor Terry at pastor@communitychurchgr.com
 
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Please continue to show your support to CCGR —
Though we cannot be together in person, we continue to be together spiritually as we face this health crisis together.  We are gifted with our weekly virtual services and continue to pray for each other. If you’re able during this unprecedented time, please remember supporting Community Church in your time of giving. In addition to mailing contributions, you may access CCGR’s website and donate on-line, as well:  https://communitychurchgr.com
CCGR Book Group
The next Zoom CCGR Book Group Meeting is scheduled for Friday, September 11 at 7 p.m. Current reading is “The Redheads by the Side of the Road” by Anne Tyler.
Community Thrift Shop
The Community Thrift Shop is now open — with limited hours — to receive donations of clothes, linens, and shoes, and some bric-a-brac. They are now beginning to receive fall and winter items. They request that you limit clothing to 2 kitchen plastic garbage-size bags (or 4 paper grocery bags), and 2 small boxes for bric-a-brac.
Their current ‘limited’ hours are:
Monday: Drop-off Only (10 a.m. – 2 p.m.)
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday: Open for Sales (10 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
Wednesday &  Friday: Closed
 
 (85 Godwin Avenue, Midland Park  — in the lower level behind Kings Shopping Center; 201-652-7661)
 
*Please remember to mention ‘Community Church‘ (#3), as we will receive a percentage of any of our donated items.
God Bless!Pray
~Donna
P.S. —-
A Message from CCGR’s Office Staff — Josh Gottheimer’s Office Outreach of Support:
For your information only — Barbara Zucchino (from our church office)  suggested I share the following:
 “Katie (201-803-0560), from Josh Gottheimer’s office,  called our church office relaying that any members of our congregation having problems with social security, unemployment, grants, etc., can call her for help.”  (Gotheimer’s main office # is 201-389-1100.)
PLEASE NOTE:  (If you do end up calling, we suggest you do not provide any personal information, i.e., social security number, bank account number, etc.)
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