As you have heard Governor Inslee has issued some new Covid mandates for Washington state. I know that the initial shock of new restrictions was hard on all of us. We got used to our “new normal” and with the holidays approaching quickly, none of us are excited for the changes. However, the governor is still our elected leader and we are called to be good citizens (Rom. 13) and we, above all, want to love neighbors our city (Mark 12:31) and do our part to bring this pandemic to a swift end. So we will do our best to comply with new mandates and restrictions while maintaining our connection as a community and our worship of Jesus.
So, what do the new restrictions mean for the church? Can we still meet in person? The long and short answer is, yes! The Cordova will remain open on Sunday mornings following the same practices and guidelines that we established months ago: Masks are still required and seating will continue to be socially distanced for the safety and health of the church and the city.
The mandate however does also state that “congregational singing” is, for the time being, prohibited. Obviously this is not ideal as singing is, and always has been an important part of Christian worship! (See Ephesians 5:19-20!) Though this mandate is difficult for us, we know that worshipping Jesus through singing is not the end all, be all of our worship. We look on the outer things, but God looks at the heart - he sees what’s inside, he hears the silent prayer and the worship of the heart. (Mt. 6:7-13, I Sam. 6:7, Hab. 2:20)
Though singing as a congregation is prohibited, we will continue to lead the church in ‘live worship’ by safely broadcasting our worship in song and teaching from the upper room studio at the Cordova. We invite you to join us at the Cordova, and worship Jesus - even if you can’t do it with your voice. Feel free to express your worship in other ways, journal, to draw, to hum along or to dance your worship on the backspace while we sing from upstairs. Anything done to the glory or God brings him worship. (I Cor. 10:31)
If you are unable to, or feel uncomfortable gathering with us at the Cordova, our online worship service is still available for you - and you can sing at the top of your lungs in your own home! Additionally, Youth group, college group and certain small groups will continue to meet face to face as they still fit within the current mandated boundaries.
No matter which way you plan to engage with worship - know that Jesus loves you very much and Heidi and I do to. We appreciate your courage, encouragement and patience as we continue to do our very best to be a safe space for anyone to meet, fall in love with and grow up in - Jesus.