News From Up The Creek
DECEMBER 2, 2020
John 1:1-5, 14
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.6 There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. 9 There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.
This is one of my favorite Christmas passages of scripture. It speaks of the Light of God, Jesus, coming into our world. Christmas is the season of lights—all colors, on trees, on house eves, handrails, and roof tops, in store windows, and by candle in the hands of God’s people on Christmas Eve. Lights are best seen at night where they stand out against the dark backdrop.
John speaks of the Light breaking into the world of darkness, like pulling back the curtains of a cold, dark room and letting in the warm sunlight of a new day. He also says that, remarkably, some people would rather remain in darkness instead of receiving the Light. But others, oh the glory, would receive the Light, Jesus, and be given “the right to become children of God.”
This Christmas, with all the good, warm, cheerful emotions we get with the fun songs, and the inspiring feelings of Christmas hymns, those wonderful sounds, lets be sure to see the lights—the Light. When we turn down the lights in the room and all that is illuminated is the Christmas tree, let’s remember Jesus, our redeemer, who came into the world to save us. Remember Jesus when you see beautiful lights shining here, there, and everywhere. For our Father sent His Son from the light of heaven to this dark world because He loved this world so much. So that all who believe in Him would not perish in darkness but have the Light of eternal life (see John 3:16).
Let’s light those Christmas trees bright and sing those Christmas songs joyfully as we celebrate Jesus, the Light, coming into our world and into our lives.
Oh, come let us adore Him!
Spring Creek Cumberland Presbyterian Church
3411 Spring Creek Road
Montevallo, Alabama 35115
Phone (205) 665-4184 Dr. Scott Fowler, Pastor
March 17, 2020
Dear Church family,
These are some strange and difficult days we are experiencing of late. A song by Andrew Peterson was randomly selected by my Spotify app and played as I was driving home last night. I was immediately struck by the emotion and truth of the first line, “Do you feel the world is broken?” with the response, “It is” (from “Is He Worthy?”). The inspiring song echoes the message of scripture that the world is indeed broken, but harkens to the fact that “all the dark won’t stop the light from getting through,” and “the glory of the Lord (is) to be the light within our midst.” God is with us in this crisis, He loves us, and He has blessed us with one another to help us make it through to see better days.
On Friday as President Trump declared a National Emergency due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, along with our Governor, Kaye Ivey, declaring a state of emergency after the first case of the virus was verified here in Alabama, the leadership of our church was making plans to meet to address the needs of our church. We met on Sunday afternoon—the Session, Team leaders, and staff—to discuss and formulate plans for our church during this crisis. After prayer and deliberation, we all came to the consensus to suspend all services, meetings, and activities until after April 5. Our decision affirmed the new directive of “no gatherings over 25” issued yesterday. And of course, we will evaluate the situation as we get closer to April 5th and keep you informed of any variance to this plan.
As a church we love, love, love, getting together. This will be tough on us, but we also have some plans that we hope will help. One plan we are working on is to provide a video of an abbreviated worship service that will include scripture readings, prayers, a sermon I’ll preach, and possibly music. We are looking to have this video available by this coming Sunday morning. We will get the information to you on how to access the video on the internet, to view on your computer or smart phone.
Communication, getting information to you, sharing needs, hearing from you, is very important during this time. In addition to mail, texting, and phone calls, we will utilize the media of email, our website, and the church’s Facebook page to share church news and updates with you. Our Board of Elders, the current active members on the Session, have each been assigned individuals and families of our church. They will be in contact with you soon after you receive this letter. The Shepherds will be checking with you on how you are doing, share any current information on the church, and to receive prayer concerns. They will be there for you to contact should needs arise. I will also be available for you to contact anytime, keeping office hours most mornings, Monday through Thursday, office phone 205-665-4184, cell 205-901-8478.We love each of you and care for you dearly, and will try to help if we can, or find someone who can help.
Some have asked how we can give our tithes and offerings since we will not be meeting together during this time. Right now, we have three options; mail to the church address (printed on this letterhead), bring it by the office (call ahead to be sure someone is there), or call your Shepherd or me to arrange for a pickup at your home. Thank you for your support for Spring Creek Church and honoring the Lord with your giving. God will continue to bless us and His work.
Some of us may be spending more time at home under the current conditions. All of us will be watching less sports on TV, no live sports, and we won’t be attending games and events and activities like we used to. It will be a great opportunity to spend quality time with our loved ones and communicate with our friends. Let’s look for God to work through all of these opportunities.
Let me also encourage us to use our extra time to pray, read our Bibles and inspiring Christian books, and seek God for renewal and revival in ourselves, our church, our community, our nation, and indeed, the whole world. This virus has affected the entire world.We’ve all been shaken by this crisis. We pray that the entire world would be more open than ever to the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. And as we pray for healing and cures and vaccines for this coronavirus, may we also pray that God would use us to share His light and love with those around us (6 to 10 feet apart!), and those we speak with on the phone or text or correspond with through social media.
Though the days are trying, let us be assured God is with us and is empowering us, enabling us, to continue glorifying His great name. Though our schedules have been drastically altered, and the world shakes around us, our focus remains clear—Jesus Christ is Lord and we live our lives unto His honor and glory.
In His great love,
P.S. Here are some inspiring and encouraging scriptures to help in times like this:
Office phone — 205-665-4184
Scott’s cell — 205-901-8478
Web address — springcreekcpchurch.org