DOWNLOAD OUR APPTHE MOVE to one worship service on Sundays (10:30 a.m.) should have some great effects on Riverbend as we move forward.One major benefit is that we should become more unified as a church body. With two services, we have been functioning like two separate congregations. It will be fun to get to see and begin to know people that we didn’t even know were fellow members.Also, we will benefit by the accompanying motivation to go ahead with the expansion of our facilities.You will be hearing more about it later in the year, but we plan to move ahead, God-willing, with a new education building. Pray for God to grant wisdom as we go forward.MANY OF YOU have expressed excitement about the new church schedule that we have announced some time back—especially going to one service. I am excited about that, as well, because it will help unify our church as family.As pastors of other churches have shared with your staff, it will help us feel more like one church and not two separate churches in the same facility.Our staff has deliberated and discussed the schedule situation and share the anticipation of those who asked if we could start the new schedule sooner.We have been making all the logistical plans for several weeks and believe we are ready for the change.Originally, we scheduled the changes to be effective in August. But in light of our church family’s enthusiasm, we have agreed to move the Sunday schedule (going to one morning worship time and one Bible Fellowship Group time) forward two months—to June. The new schedule is posted in this issue.Space for all on-campus BFGs to meet has been worked out. Plus, we will use overflow rooms to accommodate larger crowds for Morning Worship. In fact, when we have large numbers of guests (which has been frequent lately), please consider sitting in one of the overflow areas (Fellowship Hall and Choir Room). This will enable the guests to sit in the Worship Center and experience the real flavor of what Riverbend is all about. We want to avoid seating guests in the overflow rooms.Throughout the summer, you will be hearing about other changes—both in our facilities and in ministries. We ask for your prayerful support that through it all God will be exalted.Thanks again for your encouragement and your loyalty to our Lord and His church!
PLEASE DON’T miss the marvelous opportunities you have in the next several days to share the Gospel with family and friends.My reference, of course, is to the Ormond Passion Play (left), one of Riverbend’s major outreach tools.If you have seen The Promise, you know of the Truth it presents. You also understand the tedious work that goes into making it a quality presentation. If you have never seen it, then you are in for a unique blessing.One of our chief roles as Christians is to invite to God’s house those who most likely have not been saved from God’s wrathful judgment on sin.Be certain to be obedient to the Scripture by bringing people to this event. I cannot over-emphasize what Jesus said (Luke 14:23): “Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.”Bringing people to God’s house is not an option; it is an obligation. It is not a suggestion; it is a requirement. It is not a challenge, it is a command.Maybe the very one you bring will join the hundreds of others who have gained a clear picture of the Gospel and trusted in the shed blood of Christ as the only hope of heaven.Let’s do it. It’s our purpose. It’s our commission from the Lord.
APRIL MEANS we at Riverbend are in the thick of Passion Play season.Rehearsals of some kind are happening almost every night, finishing touches are being put on the set, our publications constantly remind us of what's ahead, plans are being finalized for the Dinner Theaters, the tech crew is programming the sound and lights, and on and on it goes.Many Riverbenders are involved in many different fashions in this great outreach event. But ALL Riverbenders can be involved in inviting people to see this quality event called The Promise. Have you invited anyone to attend this vivid presentation of the true Gospel? If not, you still haven't completed your involvement. Jesus said (Luke 14:23): "Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled."Take advantage of the invitation cards available at Information Station. Use them to invite family and friends. When they come, they will be blessed, you will be blessed and some of those who are lost will be saved.Praise the Lord!EASTER SHOULD be classified as an “empty” holiday for all Christians.Our belief in “Christ alone by grace alone through faith alone” centers around the “emptiness” that was so victoriously present at the end of our Lord’s physical time on earth.I’m referring, of course, to the empty cross and the empty tomb. Praise God that both are still empty. That emptiness is what separates real Christianity from the hundreds of other false beliefs and philosophies out there.As we celebrate Easter, remember we are celebrating the risen Christ who is forever alive and preparing a place for us. Glory to God!