Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Today, I’d like to introduce you to a man named Charles Simeon. Rev. Simeon was born in 1759, within an aristocratic family. While attending university, he was obligated to participate in communion. But this posed a problem for him, since he knew that he wasn’t a Christian. He would later say, “Satan himself were as fit to attend as I!” So after fasting, praying and studying God’s word, he began to understand the reality of substitutionary atonement. It was on April 4, 1779 (Easter Sunday) that he awoke with assurance of salvation and could, in good conscience, participate in the Communion service.
But his parents and acquaintances were not thrilled with his conversion to Christianity. They basically ignored him. In spite of this mild opposition, and perhaps because of it, he continued to grow in Christian maturity. When he had opportunities to preach, he took them. By 1783, he was appointed a minister of Holy Trinity Church in Cambridge (England). When he preached his first sermon, people protested by not attending, by locking the pews, and in the evening service, even locking the doors of the church to keep him out. But he stayed… for 54 years. He endured opposition and harassment for the first 30 years at the church. But he knew God had called him to be faithful, so he stayed and served and pointed people to the Savior.
He knew that preaching God’s Word could change people’s lives. So, he woke up at 4 am each morning to devote hours to studying and meditating on God’s word. He trained university students in preaching. He later explained that he was neither Arminian, nor Calvinistic, but a Bible Christian. He went on to publish sermon outlines, as helps for other preachers. When completed, he had compiled 2536 of these outlines, covering the whole of Scripture. He also worked to encourage other pastors and church leaders through “parties” for clergy and their wives.
My own preaching has been shaped by Rev. Simeon. As a reminder, I have at the head of every manuscript, a quote about preaching from Simeon: “Do it so plainly and simply that all may understand and be ready to say, ‘I could have made as good a sermon myself.’” My hope is that you continue to benefit from the life, witness and ministry of Rev. Charles Simeon.
Also, please continue to pray for the nation of Ukraine. Here is a suggested list of prayers if you are at a loss for words in how to pray: https://send.org/story/hh_pray_for_ukraine. Thank you for kneeling on behalf of the people of Ukraine and Russia, and taking a stand (or a knee in prayer) against the forces of darkness in this present age.
This Week (April 21-April 27, 2023):
1. Tonight, April 21, 2023, the Living Stones Friday Night Bible Study is meeting from 7:30-9:30 to begin our study about My Encounter With Jesus. You can read John 5:1-27 in preparation for this time of fellowship. Join in person in Room A-216 or online via the following link at 7:30 pm:
Meeting ID: 685 376 249
Join by phone: +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)
2. The Living Stones Sunday School and Grace Ambassadors Sunday School classes are wrapping up their classes on April 23.
a. The Grace Ambassadors (Young Adults) will be meeting at 9:45 am (in-person in Room A-202)! We will be taking time to discuss Chapter 15 of Tim Keller’s book on Prayer. More info is found on the YAs Messenger Chat. For further info, contact Jillian Yuan.
b. “Understanding the Old Testament” Sunday School is this Sunday at 9:45 in-person (Room A-216) and online via the following link:
Meeting ID: 491 248 585
Join by phone: +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
3. This Sunday, April 16, 2023, at 11:25 am, Pastor Sean Lee will be preaching. Pray for him! Join us for worship at CBCGL!
a. Text: Ephesians 2:11-22
b. Title: The Greatest Reconciliation
c. Live stream via Youtube: https://www.cbcgl.org/live-stream/
4. Each Wednesday, such as this week (April 26) at 7:45 pm, you are invited, encouraged, and requested to join our weekly prayer meeting. We will not grow in Christ without growing in our dependence on God through prayer. In April, we will be taking time to pray using our 2023: Blessed to be a Blessing. The link is found below in the section on prayer.
Administration / Events
1. Break out your cleaning skills, and be more zealous than in your own home, because we have a chance to bring order out of chaos, to restore structure to disarray, to clean a messy cafeteria. Join us in the main cafeteria ***Sunday, April 23*** at 1:20 pm to wipe tables, sweep the floor, stack chairs, mop the floor and take out the trash in the cafeteria and kitchen. This is your final opportunity before the fall of 2023! See you there!
2. We have a missions update (so check out the missions tab from the bulletin)! This week, we have an update from Tim and Judy who are serving international students in the US (since the Pandemic). They have a number of things for which to praise God (like a celebration of cultures, or God’s provision of their 2022 budget), even as they seek to serve a scholar, D, who has become a believer (though he is from a restricted nation). Please check the missions tab in our bulletin to read through their report and learn how you can support our missionaries.
3. If you’re interested in joining CBCGL as a member, please contact Pastor Nathan Willems for more information on how to become a member and to schedule a membership class.
4. Save the Dates:
May 6th – Worship Leader Training, 1 to 5 pm (@ CBCGL) – Here is a link to sign-up: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0944a9a92aabf5c52-worship
May 13th – Marriage Conference, 9:30 am to 5 pm (with dinner on your own afterwards) – (@BCEC Chinatown). Sign up here by April 30. If you want free parking, let Pastor Willems know by April 23! https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd7q8okp-BLsRtvdPv_etJRCXFQ4CDHpOPGKj8VN7SNr0Q4sg/viewform?usp=sf_link
5. Sunday Lunch Service began again at CBCGL on Jan. 8th with $5 lunchboxes! To place an order, please use the following link: https://forms.office.com/r/nCwQnMruKv Orders need to be placed by Friday at 11 pm so that the kitchen can prepare the correct amount of food. Note: The selection which states “Number of Meals” refers to the cooked food/lunch box/Chinese food option.
6. CBCGL’s COVID-19 guidance has been updated. We still are following CDC guidance for travel and participation in activities following travel or exposure to a positive case. Please note, wearing a face mask to church is now optional.
7. All other announcements can be found here (in our CrossPoint Community bulletin).
1. The one who lives without prayer lives as if there is no God. Truly, our time in prayer shows what we think about God! Do you see your need of Him? Or are you trying to live this life without / apart from Him? Please join our Wednesday night prayer meeting (7:45 – 9:00 pm) even if you can’t participate the whole time.
Meeting ID: 758 587 937
Join by phone: +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)
2. We’d be glad to pray for you. If you need prayer, you can submit your prayer request via the following link: https://www.cbcgl.org/pray/
In Christ, your servant, SDG,
Rev. Dr. Nathan Willems
Associate Pastor of CrossPoint Community – A Ministry of CBCGL