Throughout the history of the global church, there have been times of persecution, times of harvest, seasons of hardship, and seasons of conquest. I´d argue and say that in the persecution and hardship, the church was conquering and preparing for harvest. For it is in difficulty that the strong rise, in the lies of fear that the truth of Christ stands like a banner over His people.
In John 16:33, Jesus told His disciples, and tells us today, ¨These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”. I think it’s safe to say that what has caused social distancing and self-quarantine is a global affliction. But it is in this time of isolation that God wants us to draw near. The way I see it, quarantine is the perfect setting to establish deeper connections, first with God, and then with our community. After all, it was in the middle of persecution that the early church flourished and grew strong.
Scripture says, ¨42 All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer. 43 A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. 44 And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. 45 They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. 46 They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity— 47 all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved¨ (Acts 2:42-47 NLT).
We believe it’s time to dedicate ourselves to the teachings of our pastor, Pastor Cesar, read the books that teach us about the power of the blood of Jesus, and stay connected. Although we cannot meet in the houses as the disciples did in Acts 2, we have technological alternatives that they did not have. We can continue to have fellowship through programs such as Zoom, Google Hangouts, FaceTime, Skype, and WhatsApp Video. Just like in Acts 2:44, it’s time to witness miraculous signs and wonders. Verses 45 to 47 of the same chapter teach us about generosity and worship, two attitudes of the heart that are reflected with our actions and are closely linked to each other. Need is what united them! Remember you can give your offering and tithe online during this time. God wants to bless you and honor your generosity! Let’s remember that generosity, much like worhsip, opens the heavens over our lives. That is why we encourage you to have times of worship with your cell group online as well as with your family. The big promise is in the last verse: “And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved..” We believe that the gospel flourishes in the midst of a crisis and that this is the time of salvation for each of our nations!
We have the opportunity to innovate and grow in the way we consolidate and disciple. It is important to understand that our focus is to nurture and grow relationships. Spending time together on a video call is a little different than we´re used to, but it can be effective if we do it right.
We want to share a few recommendations to make the most of this time:
Create the right environment. It is a good idea to:
- Invite your guests to connect 15 minutes before the meeting to test their cameras and microphones. Be patient, many are connecting for the first time.
- Motivate them to find a place in their home with few distractions, and activate their camera, it will allow them to concentrate better.
- Remind them of the importance of taking notes, preferably in a notebook to prevent being distracted by their phone.
Enjoy the conversation.
- Start with a prayer or a time of worship.
- The key is to connect with them. Share the Word and ask reflection questions. You can also plan a video call for everyone to take turns sharing what they learned from a sermon or book you are studying together.
- This is a great opportunity to hear what is in the hearts of our disciples and motivate them with teaching of the faith.
- Share Pastor Cesar´s teachings and posts in your ministry and family group chats.
- You can arrange to pray at the same time every day together as a cell group.
- If you have a group chat for your cell group, everyone can take turns sharing their rhema word.
- Stay connected to G12´s live streams (now available in english here). Follow Pastor Cesar on social media and stay informed with the virtual activities programmed by your church.
How to stay connected:
MCI Livestreams and donations:
For your kids: