We are excited to see you at our Family Gathering THIS Sunday, May 16, 2021, from 3-5PM, at Gold Avenue Church. We anticipate that it will be a joyful time of reconnecting and hearing more about what to expect when we regather for Sunday morning worship on June 6, 2021. Here is what we will do when we meet on Sunday: 

We will meet outside at 3:00pm on what looks to be a beautiful spring day, to enjoy fellowship and reconnecting. The south-east parking lot will be roped off to create a space for this, other areas that can be used are the patio on the east side of the building or the park across the street. Red lanyards will be available for people who would like to fellowship outside, but are very cautious. They are a visual reminder that the person wearing one would like to have people around them wear a mask and keep 6 feet of distance.

We will then move inside through the main doors on California St. We will be checked in before finding seats as a way to test our check-in system. Every other row of seating will have been removed in order to help with physical distancing. The floor space in the alcove on the south side of the sanctuary will be reserved for families with small children. Families may bring a picnic blanket and/or beach chairs so they can sit with their children.

Throughout our time inside we will hear from the Regathering Team about what our guidelines for regathering will be, and what we can expect when we regather for Sunday Worship. We will hear about the new interim positions that have been created to aid in our regathering, for which we are all very excited about. We’ll share more about what our testimony time will look like as we regather, and we’ll end with joyful worship. We are very excited to meet to talk about these things and that our regathering will begin in just a few short weeks on June 6!

Lastly, please keep in mind that there is still a pandemic going on, so things will continue to look different for a while. Below are the guidelines that the Regathering Team has prayerfully and carefully discerned regarding how our Gold Ave Church family can safely resume in-person services in the midst of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Our goal is to create as safe of an environment as possible and reasonable. We respectfully ask for much grace and ask that we all make every effort to follow the guidelines set forth by Paul in Ephesians 4:2-3   “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” First is a short infographic that summarizes our guidelines, and after that is the full document which explains each point in more detail. You are invited to view this ahead of the family gathering if you desire to.

 

Read our full guidelines ahead of the gathering here: Covid-19 Regathering Guidelines – Please note that since publishing these guidelines on Wednesday, there has been new guidance from the CDC and the State of Michigan, lifting mask wearing requirements for those who have been fully vaccinated in most circumstances (still subject to local guidance). As the Regathering Team is constantly monitoring these and prayerfully discerning how to apply them to our situation, this has led to a change in our guidelines. Since we will not be monitoring who has been vaccinated or not; our mask wearing requirement has changed to a recommendation to wear masks for all those who have not been vaccinated. We realize that some who have been vaccinated may choose to continue to wear a mask, while others may have health or other legitimate reasons for not wearing a mask, or not being vaccinated. In an effort to maintain unity and avoid any needless division, we ask to please not make assumptions about whether someone is or is not vaccinated by whether or not they are wearing a mask or not. Another addition is that there will be a limited number of N95 or KN95 masks available for those desiring a higher degree of personal protection.

Note that there will not be an open discussion time during the gathering. Please send questions to the regathering team at gold.regathering@gmail.com

We look forward to seeing you all on Sunday!

A note before you begin:  

 

This service was prayerfully planned and coordinated with worship planner Kayleen Jasperse  in conjunction with the pastors.

 

Our prayer is that this liturgy helps us to create cultures of worship in our homes or wherever we utilize them. May the Lord bless you as you enter into his presence and give him praise. May we each be met, blessed,  challenged, and encouraged to grow as disciples and disciple makers of  Jesus Christ.

Call to Worship: 

The Call to Worship serves to focus our attention on the living God who is present with us; it calls us to position ourselves as those who are ready to worship and ready to receive from our Lord.

 

Read the following out loud as you fix your eyes on Jesus:

 

From Psalm 24:7-10:

 

Lift up your heads, you gates;
be lifted up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.

Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
the Lord mighty in battle.

Lift up your heads, you gates;
lift them up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.

Who is he, this King of glory?
The Lord Almighty—
he is the King of glory.

 

Pray for the Lord to fill you, your household, and your home with His presence and His peace.  Fix your eyes and the focus of your heart on Him.

 

Worshiping in Song:

 

This is Amazing Grace

The Lord’s Greeting:

The Lord’s Greeting serves to remind us that we are in the presence of the living God. It makes space for him to greet us as our loving heavenly father who rules and reigns as the King over all and who is present with us as our loving heavenly father!

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read these words from 2 John 1:3 aloud:

 

Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.

 

Greeting One Another:

It might feel a little odd doing this at home, but take time to say these words to greet each other, as you shake hands, hug or elbow bump.

 

Consider sending a greeting text message to a church family member.

 

“The Lord be with you”

 

and in response: 

 

“And also with you”

 

And if you’re alone:

 

“The Lord is with me”

 

King of Kings

 

I will Follow

 

Testimony/Family Prayer Time:

 

Please be in prayer for Pastor Dave, Anne, Pieter, Sarah, Rachel, and Matthew Westra as they received word on Wednesday, 5/5 that their brother-in-law and uncle, Dave Mantel (married to Pastor Dave’s sister, Christine), passed away Tuesday evening after a long and painful battle with cancer. Dave’s passing is a tremendous loss as he leaves behind his wife Christine and their 4 children. You can read more about the Westra’s brother-in-law and uncle  here.  If you would like to send a card, you can access the Westra’s address in the church directory directly from your Weekly Update email.

 

Take a few minutes to pray for the Westra and Mantel families, our church family, neighborhood, and the world as the Lord leads.

 

Consider asking a church family member how you can be in prayer for them, or invite a church family member to pray for you.

 

 

Regular Offering:

Support ministry at Gold Avenue Church by giving to the general fund (Click the picture for more giving options):

  1. Text:  send amount (number only, no extra symbols) to (616) 319-2259 and follow prompts to give securely
  2. Give online at https://goldavenuechurch.breezechms.com/give/online or give through PayPal here.
  3. Mail a check payable to Gold Avenue Church at 49 Gold Avenue NW Grand Rapids, MI 4950

 

Song of Preparation

The Song of Preparation serves to prepare our hearts to receive the Word of the Lord.  Continue to fix your eyes on Jesus and surrender your attention and heart to him as we transition and prepare to enter into His Word. 

 

Refiner’s Fire

 

The Preaching of the Word:

Our current sermon series is written in connection to and alongside a helpful tool that we have developed called the Gospel Tool. Disciple Groups at Gold Avenue Church are working through lessons that are based upon the Gospel Tool, and we want to make this resource available to every listener. Click here to check out the Gospel Tool, the Visual Gospel overview, statements, & scriptures.

 

Access the audio of the sermon here: Sermon Audio Recording

 

Song of Response:

The song of response gives opportunity to consider, apply, and respond to what we’ve just heard from the Word. If you need to and are able, take a few minutes to process what you’ve just heard and experienced and how the Lord may be inviting you to respond. Sing in response as you feel led.

Build Your Kingdom Here

The Lord’s Blessing:

The Lord’s Blessing serves to make space for us the Lord to bless us to continue to walk in faithful obedience and to grow up into maturity.

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read the following out loud:

 

From Numbers 6:24-26:

 

The Lord bless you
and keep you;

 

the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;

 

the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace

 

Closing Song

We Love You Lord | We Exalt Thee

 

Dear Parents,

Thanks for joining us again as we do Children’s Worship from home!  

Note: Please let us know about how your family is enjoying Children’s Worship! Take some pictures of your family participating in Children’s Worship or share a story. You can post to the Gold Avenue Church Facebook page or send by email at goldavechurch@gmail.com

Sleeping Through the Storm

Based on: Mark 4:35-41

EQUIP:  

(It’s not an activity, but just a little background on the story for you, the parent, to read.) 

 

During the worst year of my life, I received a unique gift: a tiger swallowtail butterfly. It had been rescued from the middle of the busiest, dirtiest street in the city, plucked from certain death in an improbable way and placed in a take-out box. In an impossible place, this delicate creature had rested and been graced with a rescue as it rested. Its presence in my hands reminded me of the lack of rest in my own life as I scrambled to fix everything myself, on my own terms.

 

As Jesus slept through the howling wind and crashing waves, His peaceful nap reminds us that He had made this water and called forth this wind— they were His! Jesus’ actions astonished His disciples, mainly because they didn’t fully understand yet who He was. Today, we have complete information about Him. Knowing fully that He is the Savior sent by God, we also must answer His questions: “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (Mark 4:40). He is still Lord, still able!

 

From the outside, the peace Jesus offers us may look as improbable as a butterfly resting in the middle of a busy street—or as Jesus Himself sleeping peacefully through a storm! But as we rest in His peace, we receive the ability to sit tight in the middle of the worst possible situation, trusting Him to do more than we can imagine!

 

Activity One:  Read the intro. Watch the video of the story.

Activity Two: Discuss the story using provided questions as prompts. Prayer.

Worship: Singing 

Activity Three:  Respond to the story by doing the activity. 

Activity Four:  Bless your children 

 

 

Activity 1:  STORY

 

Introduction to read the children:

Jesus and His friends were near the Sea of Galilee. They were with a huge crowd of people who had come to see Jesus. All day long, Jesus was teaching and healing. He and His friends were getting tired, but even when it got late, the people stayed. They weren’t going anywhere!

 

Jesus turned to His friends and said, “Let’s get into the boat and travel to the other side of the sea.” This would give Jesus and His friends a chance to rest before another crowd of people gathered!

 

Watch video:

 

 

Conclusion to read to the children

 

Jesus proved that He has power over all of creation. He can keep us safe in any storm. He can give us peace in any scary situation. Show bike lock. Does your bike have the ability to keep itself safe from being stolen? No! That’s why you lock it up. Then you have peace of mind that it is safe! In the same way, when times are hard and scary, there is no one like Jesus to depend on. When we ask for His help and remember His power, it gives us peace of mind in scary times.

Our Bible verse today tells us the BEST way to lock onto that peace! Read aloud Philippians 4:6.  “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.”  Don’t worry! In every situation, we can pray and trust Jesus! When we thank Him and trust Him, He gives us peace. He helps us feel safe and cared for.

 

Activity 2:  DISCUSSION

  • Why do you think Jesus continued to sleep during such a bad storm? (He knew God would take care of them. He knew He had power over the storm.)
  • Why did Jesus’ friends think He didn’t care about them? How did Jesus show them He would help them when they asked?
  • Why do you think Jesus’ friends were so amazed when He stopped the storm? (They didn’t realize He had power over wind and waves. They didn’t realize how powerful He really was.)
  • What do you think a kid who needs peace should do? (Ask a trusted person for help. Pray.) What does Philippians 4:6 tell us to do? (Tell God your worries.)
  • What are ways to have peace when you are worried or afraid? (Pray. Believe Jesus. Trust God. Thank God for His help.)

Let’s pray now and ask God for peace for something that is bothering us and to trust Him to take care of it.

Encourage children to pray for God to help them with something they need peace with this week in their own words. Then, transition into a time of prayer for personal requests.

 

Worship Songs:

 

 

Activity 3: RESPONSE ACTIVITY #1

Jesus Brings Peace Crayon Resist Art

 

Help kids remember this Bible story about Jesus calming the storm and bringing peace for the disciples and for us, too, with this craft.

 

Supplies

  • white crayon (or a wax candle)
  • watercolor paint
  • cardstock or watercolor paper
  • paintbrushes

 

Instructions:

  1. Have children write (or you write) “Jesus gives me peace,” or Jesus gives me peace in scary times,“ or the verse Phillipians 4:6 on the cardstock using a white crayon.
  2. Paint over the cardstock with watercolor paint.
  3. Let dry, and voila! Crayon resist art!

 

Activity #2  Print and Color

Activity 4: CLOSING BLESSING

 

This week when I’m at work or home, I’m going to talk to God about things that worry me. I’ll pray that you remember to talk to God, too.

 

(______________), may God bless you with His peace this week and forever!

 

Please join us for our Family Gathering NEXT Sunday, May 16, 2021, from 3-5PM. We anticipate that it will be a joyful time of reconnecting and hearing more about what to expect when we regather for Sunday morning worship on June 6, 2021. We’ll share more details in next week’s update so be sure to check it out!

A note before you begin:  

 

This service was prayerfully planned and coordinated with worship planner Kayleen Jasperse  in conjunction with the pastors.

 

Our prayer is that this liturgy helps us to create cultures of worship in our homes or wherever we utilize them. May the Lord bless you as you enter into his presence and give him praise. May we each be met, blessed,  challenged, and encouraged to grow as disciples and disciple makers of  Jesus Christ.

Call to Worship: 

The Call to Worship serves to focus our attention on the living God who is present with us; it calls us to position ourselves as those who are ready to worship and ready to receive from our Lord.

 

Read the following out loud as you fix your eyes on Jesus:

From Philippians 2:5-11

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

 

Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.

And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
        even death on a cross!

 

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

 

Pray for the Lord to fill you, your household, and your home with His presence and His peace.  Fix your eyes and the focus of your heart on Him.

 

Worshiping in Song:

 

There is a Name

The Lord’s Greeting:

The Lord’s Greeting serves to remind us that we are in the presence of the living God. It makes space for him to greet us as our loving heavenly father who rules and reigns as the King over all and who is present with us as our loving heavenly father!

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read these words from 2 John 1:3 aloud:

 

Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.

 

Greeting One Another:

It might feel a little odd doing this at home, but take time to say these words to greet each other, as you shake hands, hug or elbow bump.

 

Consider sending a greeting text message to a church family member.

 

“The Lord be with you”

 

and in response: 

 

“And also with you”

 

And if you’re alone:

 

“The Lord is with me”

 

Jesus There’s No One Like You

 

To Our God

 

Testimony/Family Prayer Time:

 

How has the Lord been at work this week? Consider sharing your story with those around you or writing it down. Give glory to the Lord for the good work that He has done!

 

 

Take a few minutes to pray for our church family, neighborhood, and the world as the Lord leads.

 

Consider asking a church family member how you can be in prayer for them, or invite a church family member to pray for you.

 

 

Regular Offering:

Support ministry at Gold Avenue Church by giving to the general fund (Click the picture for more giving options):

  1. Text:  send amount (number only, no extra symbols) to (616) 319-2259 and follow prompts to give securely
  2. Give online at https://goldavenuechurch.breezechms.com/give/online or give through PayPal here.
  3. Mail a check payable to Gold Avenue Church at 49 Gold Avenue NW Grand Rapids, MI 4950

 

Song of Preparation

The Song of Preparation serves to prepare our hearts to receive the Word of the Lord.  Continue to fix your eyes on Jesus and surrender your attention and heart to him as we transition and prepare to enter into His Word. 

 

Open the Eyes of My Heart

 

The Preaching of the Word:

Our current sermon series is written in connection to and alongside a helpful tool that we have developed called the Gospel Tool. Disciple Groups at Gold Avenue Church are working through lessons that are based upon the Gospel Tool, and we want to make this resource available to every listener. Click here to check out the Gospel Tool, the Visual Gospel overview, statements, & scriptures.

 

Access the audio of the sermon here: Sermon Audio Recording

Communion

If you are a baptized member of a church that declares Jesus is Lord, and if you are walking in the light and in pursuit of righteousness, we welcome and encourage you to join with us as we celebrate the Lord’s Supper! If you are not yet baptized or are not walking in the light, we encourage you to take some time to pray and reflect with the Lord or to confess and repent of your sins.  God’s Word promises that when we confess, he is faithful to forgive! We welcome baptized children of believers to the table as parents discern they are ready, and also invite you to pray blessing over your children who are not yet ready to partake. 

 

Song of Response:

The song of response gives opportunity to consider, apply, and respond to what we’ve just heard from the Word and the Communion that we’ve just received. If you need to and are able, take a few minutes to process what you’ve just heard and experienced and how the Lord may be inviting you to respond. Sing in response as you feel led.

Glorify Thy Name

The Lord’s Blessing:

The Lord’s Blessing serves to make space for us the Lord to bless us to continue to walk in faithful obedience and to grow up into maturity.

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read the following out loud:

 

From Numbers 6:24-26:

 

The Lord bless you
and keep you;

 

the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;

 

the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace

 

Closing Song

 

Doxology

Dear Parents,

Thanks for joining us again as we do Children’s Worship from home!   

Note: Please let us know about how your family is enjoying Children’s Worship!  Take some pictures of your family participating in Children’s Worship or share a story. You can post to the Gold Avenue Church Facebook page or send by email at goldavechurch@gmail.com

Working on the Sabbath?

Based on: Mark 2:23-28; 3:1-6

 

EQUIP:  

(It’s not an activity, but just a little background on the story for you, the parent, to read.) 

 

One Sunday, I watched as a visiting family arrived early to the worship service and chose a place to sit. A few moments later, a family who had attended our church for many years came and found that “their” seats were taken. Instead of finding another place to sit, they left, and the following week they made sure they arrived at church earlier. It was sad that the family missed out on seeing God at work in the visitors’ lives.

 

If we’re not careful, we can find ourselves in similar situations. That’s what happened to the Pharisees. They stuck to their traditions and were upset when Jesus healed someone during “their” Sabbath service. This week, examine areas of your life where traditions or being comfortable where you are may hinder you from being a part of something wonderful that God has planned.

 

When Jesus’ actions on the Sabbath went against the established rules of the Pharisees, He showed the authority given to Him as God’s Son, the Savior. When we decide to be followers of Jesus, we give Him authority over our lives, too. We choose to love Him and follow His example of loving others.

 

Lisa Pham, Editor

 

Activity One:  Read the intro. Watch the video of the story.

Activity Two: Discuss the story using provided questions as prompts. Prayer.

Worship: Singing 

Activity Three:  Respond to the story by doing the activity. 

Activity Four:  Bless your children 

 

Activity 1:  STORY

 

Introduction to read the children:

 

By now, Jesus and His friends had become pretty well known. And no matter what Jesus did or said, it seemed that there was always someone watching Him who complained, argued or even told Jesus that He was breaking a rule! Today’s Bible story starts on one of those days when the Pharisees, the religious leaders, were watching Jesus.

 

Watch video:

 

Conclusion to read to the children

 

Jesus showed what God’s love is really like when He cared about the needs of the people around Him. And He chose to do that every day, not just on days when other people thought He should!  Jesus wants us to show God’s love every day, too.

 

Following Jesus is about more than just obeying a bunch of rules. When we follow Jesus, we do the things He did—we show love to other people and care about their needs. And we choose to do these things because we know that Jesus really loves us! 

 

A Bible verse tells us how we can show God’s love to others! Galatians 6:2 says: Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”  We carry each other’s burdens when we help each other and care about problems that other people have.

 

Activity 2:  DISCUSSION

  • Why were the Pharisees upset with Jesus? (They cared more about their way of doing things than about showing love to others.) 
  • What did Jesus want them to do instead?
  • What did the Pharisees choose to do? Why?
  • What would Jesus tell kids your age about doing what’s right?
  • What do you think the law of Christ is? (Following Jesus by showing His love to others. What does Galatians 6:2 tell us to do? (Carry each other’s burdens. Help each other.) Helping and caring for others is a way to do what’s right in Jesus’ eyes! How have you helped someone who was having a hard time? How has someone helped you?

Encourage children to pray for God to help them with helping others this week in their own words. Then, transition into a time of prayer for personal requests.

 

Worship Songs:

 

Activity 3: RESPONSE ACTIVITY #1

Jesus Heals Craft

 

Help kids remember this Bible story about Jesus healing the man with the withered hand and how we need to help others for Jesus. 

To make this helping hands craft, you will want to cut hands out of brightly colored construction paper.

 

Next, have kids tape (or you could glue) hands to make a circle. We found that 7 was the perfect number and made a good size circle.

 

Have the child write by themselves or with help ideas of how they can use their hands to serve Jesus by helping others. Some of the ideas included:

  • set the table
  • do my best in school
  • hold the door open for someone else
  • hug my grandma
  • rake neighbors leaves
  • clapping praise during worship

 

Response Activity #2  Print and Color

Activity 4: CLOSING BLESSING

 

Helping each other is a way to do what’s right. No matter what you do this week, look for ways to do what’s right in Jesus’ eyes!

 

(______________), once again, may you find ways to go beyond what is expected in helping others this week

 

A note before you begin:  

 

This service was prayerfully planned and coordinated with worship planner Marissa Walters  in conjunction with the pastors.

 

Our prayer is that this liturgy helps us to create cultures of worship in our homes or wherever we utilize them. May the Lord bless you as you enter into his presence and give him praise. May we each be met, blessed,  challenged, and encouraged to grow as disciples and disciple makers of Jesus Christ.

Call to Worship: 

The Call to Worship serves to focus our attention on the living God who is present with us; it calls us to position ourselves as those who are ready to worship and ready to receive from our Lord.

 

Read the following out loud as you fix your eyes on Jesus:

From Psalm 34:1-3

I will extol the Lord at all times;
    his praise will always be on my lips.
I will glory in the Lord;
    let the afflicted hear and rejoice.

Glorify the Lord with me;
    let us exalt his name together.

 

Pray for the Lord to fill you, your household, and your home with His presence and His peace.  Fix your eyes and the focus of your heart on Him.

 

Worshiping in Song:

 

Psalm 34 |  Taste and See

The Lord’s Greeting:

The Lord’s Greeting serves to remind us that we are in the presence of the living God. It makes space for him to greet us as our loving heavenly father who rules and reigns as the King over all and who is present with us as our loving heavenly father!

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read these words from 2 John 1:3 aloud:

 

Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.

 

Greeting One Another:

It might feel a little odd doing this at home, but take time to say these words to greet each other, as you shake hands, hug or elbow bump.

 

Consider sending a greeting text message to a church family member.

 

“The Lord be with you”

 

and in response: 

 

“And also with you”

 

And if you’re alone:

 

“The Lord is with me”

 

High and Lifted Up

 

Holy is the Lord

 

I Love you Lord/We Exalt Thee

Testimony/Family Prayer Time:

 

How has the Lord been at work this week? Consider sharing your story with those around you or writing it down. Give glory to the Lord for the good work that He has done!

 

 

Take a few minutes to pray for our church family, neighborhood, and the world as the Lord leads.

 

Consider asking a church family member how you can be in prayer for them, or invite a church family member to pray for you.

 

 

Regular Offering:

Support ministry at Gold Avenue Church by giving to the general fund (Click the picture for more giving options):

  1. Text:  send amount (number only, no extra symbols) to (616) 319-2259 and follow prompts to give securely
  2. Give online at https://goldavenuechurch.breezechms.com/give/online or give through PayPal here.
  3. Mail a check payable to Gold Avenue Church at 49 Gold Avenue NW Grand Rapids, MI 4950

 

Song of Preparation

The Song of Preparation serves to prepare our hearts to receive the Word of the Lord.  Continue to fix your eyes on Jesus and surrender your attention and heart to him as we transition and prepare to enter into His Word. 

 

Holy Spirit Rain Down

 

The Preaching of the Word:

Our current sermon series is written in connection to and alongside a helpful tool that we have developed called the Gospel Tool. Disciple Groups at Gold Avenue Church are working through lessons that are based upon the Gospel Tool, and we want to make this resource available to every listener. Click here to check out the Gospel Tool, the Visual Gospel overview, statements, & scriptures.

 

Access the audio of the sermon here: Sermon Audio Recording

Song of Response:

The song of response gives opportunity to consider, apply, and respond what we’ve just heard from the Word that we’ve just received. If you need to and are able, take a few minutes to process what you’ve just heard and experienced and how the Lord may be inviting you to respond. Sing in response as you feel led.

Spirit Move

The Lord’s Blessing:

The Lord’s Blessing serves to make space for us the Lord to bless us to continue to walk in faithful obedience and to grow up into maturity.

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read the following out loud:

 

From Numbers 6:24-26:

 

The Lord bless you
and keep you;

 

the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;

 

the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace

Closing Song

 

God of Justice

Dear Parents,

Thanks for joining us again as we do Children’s Worship from home!  

Note: Please let us know about how your family is enjoying Children’s Worship! Take some pictures of your family participating in Children’s Worship or share a story. You can post to the Gold Avenue Church Facebook page or send by email at goldavechurch@gmail.com

Friendship and Forgiveness

Based on: Mark 2:1-12

 

 

EQUIP:  

(It’s not an activity, but just a little background on the story for you, the parent, to read.) 

 

A few years ago, a major league baseball player became a media sensation simply because he showed up for every game to do his job. Because our culture doesn’t have  very high expectations of sports stars, it became a big deal that the player had perfect attendance!

Today’s Bible story shows us the beauty of doing more than is expected—both on the part of the four friends and also on the part of Jesus Himself! Helping others may sometimes require courage and creativity as we follow Jesus’ example to go beyond what is expected in showing love.

 

For me, the times others have gone out of their way to help me are memories that I treasure. And they motivate me to want to take extra measures in helping others. But the abundant love of Jesus is the real life changer! There is no way to pay back His love. We can only live a life of love in grateful response to the way that Christ has loved us.

 

Jesus’ healing of the paralyzed man gives us a complete picture of how Jesus intervenes in our lives. Jesus, God’s Son, not only healed the man’s legs, but healed the man’s soul as well. The healed man was a living witness to Jesus’ power over sin. We, too, when we believe in Jesus, can be forgiven of our sin and be witnesses of His power in our lives.

 

Mary Davis, Senior Editor

 

Activity One:  Read the intro. Watch the video of the story.

Activity Two: Discuss the story using provided questions as prompts. Prayer.

Worship: Singing 

Activity Three:  Respond to the story by doing the activity. 

Activity Four:  Bless your children 

 

Activity 1:  STORY

 

Introduction:To read the children:

 

Wherever Jesus went, there was plenty of excitement! On this particular day, Jesus and His friends were in Capernaum. Of course, news spread like wildfire—”Jesus is here!” Once people found out where Jesus was, what do you think happened? (a) They set off fireworks. (b) They gathered for a fish fry on the beach. (c) They crowded in and around the house where Jesus was staying. Pause for students to respond. And the answer is C! People crowded inside the house. When it was full, more people crowded around the windows and doors and all around outside! The house was packed, inside and out!

 

Watch video:

 

Activity 2:  DISCUSSION

  • What does it mean to be paralyzed? (Cannot move. Cannot move arms and/or legs.)
  • What did the friends of the paralyzed man do to meet the needs of their friend? (They carried their friend to see Jesus. They dug a hole in a roof and lowered the man down.)
  • What did the friends expect Jesus to do? (Heal their friend.)
  • How did Jesus go beyond what was expected?  (He healed the man AND forgave his sins.)
  • What can you do this week to follow Jesus’ example in helping others? (Look for people to help. Try to help people in my family before they ask for help. Treat friends kindly and respectfully.)

Encourage children to pray for God to help them with helping others this week in their own words. Then, transition into a time of prayer for personal requests.

 

Worship Songs:

 

Activity 3: RESPONSE ACTIVITY #1 

Supplies

  • Card stock
  • Crayons
  • Glue
  • Yarn in a variety of colors
  • Scissors

We can use our hands to help others. What are some ways you can use your hands to help someone at school? At home? This week, see if you can not only meet a need by helping someone, but also see if you can go beyond what is expected!

Give each child a sheet of cardstock and a crayon. Child traces one of their hands on the piece of paper and then applies a thin line of glue to the crayon lines. Child places a length of yarn on the line of glue. Child then prints on the card stock a word or phrase as a reminder to help others. Students add designs with glue, covering the glue with different colors of yarn.  Using crayons instead of markers to trace hands will help students avoid getting marks along the edges of their hands.

Response Activity #2  Print and Color

Activity 4: CLOSING BLESSING

There were lots of unexpected actions in this story! The four friends not only carried their friend to Jesus but also tore a hole in the roof! And, best of all, Jesus not only healed the man’s legs but also forgave his sins! The man’s needs were met in unexpected ways. Every day we can look for ways to meet the needs of others, too.

(______________),  May you find ways to go beyond what is expected in helping others this week

 

Dear Gold Avenue Church Family,

 

The Regathering Team, along with the staff, have continued to seek the Lord’s leading as we work towards regathering for Sunday morning worship. Today we are pleased to share that we have set a target date of June 6 for our launch. This means that our plan, the Lord willing, is to resume our in person Sunday morning worship at church on a weekly basis, beginning June 6.

 

The Admin Elders have approved the creation of two new, part-time, interim staff positions to aid with the transition of resuming Sunday worship gatherings, while supporting our other ongoing ministries. We praise God that from within our congregation, the Lord has raised up two people who are willing and eager to use their gifts in this way. Kayleen Jasperse will be our Worship Coordinator, and Katie Harrison will be our Communication and Technology Assistant. We are excited to welcome them into these roles and are grateful for the Lord’s leading them.

Ahead of our launch, we’ll have a family gathering at church on May 16 where we hope to enjoy sweet fellowship together, share what to expect on Sunday mornings, and have time for Q&A. More information will be forthcoming about this family gathering; we hope that as many people as possible will be able to participate.

 

As we continue to work on planning the details and pulling all of the teams together for Sunday mornings, please pray for wisdom and guidance. There will be several precautions for Covid safety, which will be shared ahead of the May 16 family gathering for you to review. We are working to minimize their impact on the service. Covid numbers and guidance from government and health officials may continue to change, so we will need continued wisdom as we adapt. Please continue to be in prayer for the Regathering Team and staff as they seek the Lord and plan. We are committed to following the Lord’s leading, keeping safety as a priority.

 

Peace,

The Regathering Team

A note before you begin:   

 

This service was prayerfully planned and coordinated with worship planner Derek Sterenberg  in conjunction with the pastors.

 

Our prayer is that this liturgy helps us to create cultures of worship in our homes or wherever we utilize them. May the Lord bless you as you enter into his presence and give him praise. May we each be met, blessed,  challenged, and encouraged to grow as disciples and disciple makers of Jesus Christ.

Call to Worship: 

The Call to Worship serves to focus our attention on the living God who is present with us; it calls us to position ourselves as those who are ready to worship and ready to receive from our Lord.

 

Read the following out loud as you fix your eyes on Jesus:

From Isaiah 52:13-53:6

See, my servant will act wisely;

he will be raised and lifted up and highly exalted.

Just as there were many who were appalled at him—

his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any human being

and his form marred beyond human likeness—

so he will sprinkle many nations,

and kings will shut their mouths because of him.

For what they were not told, they will see,

and what they have not heard, they will understand.

 

Who has believed our message

and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot,

and like a root out of dry ground.

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,

nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

He was despised and rejected by mankind,

a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.

Like one from whom people hide their faces

he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain

and bore our suffering,

yet we considered him punished by God,

stricken by him, and afflicted.

 

But he was pierced for our transgressions,

he was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him,

and by his wounds we are healed.

 

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,

each of us has turned to our own way;

and the Lord has laid on him

 

 

Pray for the Lord to fill you, your household, and your home with His presence and His peace.  Fix your eyes and the focus of your heart on Him.

 

Worshiping in Song:

 

This is Amazing Grace

The Lord’s Greeting:

The Lord’s Greeting serves to remind us that we are in the presence of the living God. It makes space for him to greet us as our loving heavenly father who rules and reigns as the King over all and who is present with us as our loving heavenly father!

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read these words from 2 John 1:3 aloud:

 

Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.

 

Greeting One Another:

It might feel a little odd doing this at home, but take time to say these words to greet each other, as you shake hands, hug or elbow bump.

 

Consider sending a greeting text message to a church family member.

grace

“The Lord be with you”

 

and in response: 

 

“And also with you”

 

And if you’re alone:

 

“The Lord is with me”

 

Death Was Arrested

 

O Praise the Name

 

Testimony/Family Prayer Time:

 

How has the Lord been at work this week? Consider sharing your story with those around you or writing it down. Give glory to the Lord for the good work that He has done!

 

 

Take a few minutes to pray for our church family, neighborhood, and the world as the Lord leads.

 

Consider asking a church family member how you can be in prayer for them, or invite a church family member to pray for you.

 

 

Regular Offering:

Support ministry at Gold Avenue Church by giving to the general fund (Click the picture for more giving options):

  1. Text:  send amount (number only, no extra symbols) to (616) 319-2259 and follow prompts to give securely
  2. Give online at https://goldavenuechurch.breezechms.com/give/online or give through PayPal here.
  3. Mail a check payable to Gold Avenue Church at 49 Gold Avenue NW Grand Rapids, MI 4950

 

Special Offering for April: Benevolence

Once a month we take a special offering to support special causes the Deacons have prayerfully discerned. This month’s special offering is the Gold Avenue Church Benevolence Fund. The definition of benevolence is a kind act or gift or the doing of kind things for others. This fund helps out our church family and neighborhood with needs based help such as groceries, bill pay assistance, etc.

The deacons receive requests and pray together about how to help each request.  There is a Deacon Referral Form if you click here. By doing this our church family is able to be the hands and feet of Christ to each other and to our neighbors.

You can give to the special offering by:

  1. Text:  send amount space benevolence (ex: 50 benevolence) to (616) 319-2259 and follow prompts to give securely
  2. Give online: select special from dropdown menu or type “benevolence” in memo line
  3. Check: write “benevolence” in memo line

Song of Preparation

The Song of Preparation serves to prepare our hearts to receive the Word of the Lord.  Continue to fix your eyes on Jesus and surrender your attention and heart to him as we transition and prepare to enter into His Word. 

 

King of Kings

 

The Preaching of the Word:

Our current sermon series is written in connection to and alongside a helpful tool that we have developed called the Gospel Tool. Disciple Groups at Gold Avenue Church are working through lessons that are based upon the Gospel Tool, and we want to make this resource available to every listener. Click here to check out the Gospel Tool, the Visual Gospel overview, statements, & scriptures.

 

Access the audio of the sermon here: Sermon Audio Recording

 

Song of Response:

The song of response gives opportunity to consider, apply, and respond what we’ve just heard from the Word that we’ve just received. If you need to and are able, take a few minutes to process what you’ve just heard and experienced and how the Lord may be inviting you to respond. Sing in response as you feel led.

Good Good Father

 

The Lord’s Blessing:

The Lord’s Blessing serves to make space for us the Lord to bless us to continue to walk in faithful obedience and to grow up into maturity.

 

Fix your eyes on him as you read the following out loud:

 

From Numbers 6:24-26:

 

The Lord bless you
and keep you;

 

the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;

 

the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace

Closing Song

 

The Stand