From Our Staff:
From Pastor Gary:
Operation Christmas Child This year we are partnering with our weekday Ironbridge Community Christian School (Preschool) in preparing Christmas Shoeboxes for Samaritan’s Purse. These shoeboxes go to over 100 countries around the world and are messages of Jesus’ love and grace. It is estimated that over 2 million children have made decisions for Christ and that over 1,000 churches have been started because of this outreach. You will see information elsewhere in this BridgeBlast about picking up (November 1) and returning (November 15) your shoeboxes to start on their journey around the world.
Good News With all the bad news we have been overwhelmed with this year, it is a great time to focus on the “good news”, the gospel of Jesus Christ. I will be preaching a series on witnessing the first three Sundays of November. Our greatest privilege is to share the life-giving message of Jesus as we live out our lives in this world. This series will remind us of this opportunity and give practical insights on how to be a better witness for Jesus.
Pray! Pray! Pray! As we hopefully end this national election season, there has never been a more urgent need for prayer. This Saturday, October 24, from 10:00-12:00 noon, we will be having another prayer walk for our nation and our church. If you can come to this outdoor event, we look forward to praying with you. If you are unable to attend, please set aside time for specific prayer for God’s leadership, peace, and moving in a mighty way in the USA.
Vote! As Americans we have the privilege to vote for our elected leaders. I want to urge you to make every effort to vote by or on November 3rd. Vote for leaders that you believe will protect the Christian values that are built into the fabric of our country. Much deception is afoot; please vote for the leaders that you believe will do what they promise to do for the good of this nation.
From Pastor Paul:
I really want to take a moment to encourage those of you who are not currently part of a Bridge Group to give this some real consideration. We are called to have fellowship with one another. These certainly are difficult days to accomplish that in any way that we have been used to. Our Bridge Groups Leaders have tried to think creatively about how to keep their groups together and growing, and they are doing an amazing job. We as leaders, and as the Church, need to do this all the time…think creatively that is. Our message is the same. However, our methods do need to change, and we need to find new and different ways to connect. All of this is to say; don’t let the fact that we are doing things a little differently this year keep you from venturing out and discovering a group. There are many to choose from, and they can easily be accessed online from our church website at www.ironbridge.org. From there you can learn about different meeting times and locations. You can also learn about groups by accessing your Church Center app. In joining a Bridge Group you will find connection and fellowship; growth in your relationship with God through studying His word; support through praying for struggles and victories; and mission opportunities here at Ironbridge and out in the community. Groups are either meeting in person, by Zoom, or a combination of both. We want to make it easy for you to become a part. You can also email me at email@example.com and I will be glad to help you in your search.
WORSHIP TEAM/TECH TEAM/WELCOME TEAM
From time to time I like to give emphasis to some of our teams. You may be sitting dormant in the congregation with gifts that could be used for His glory. We are given gifts to build and encourage the body of Christ. You too will benefit with personal growth as you step out and serve with your gifts. Please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have an interest in any of these areas.
Since this Bridge Blast is coming out a little earlier than normal, I would love to give you an invite to the next 2 Classic Services. The dates are Thursday, October 29th, and November 19th. Our November Service is just a little earlier in the month because of Thanksgiving. This is a great place to experience worship a little differently than on Sunday mornings. We sing classic hymns of the faith, hear a great message, and then fellowship around a safely prepared meal by Debbie Starnes. If you are interested in coming, please contact Debbie by calling 804-751-9065 and leaving her a message. We want to be able to prepare for the right number of people. Come join us!
From Student Pastor Zach:
Are you a cow or are you a buffalo? Near the mountains of Colorado, storms roll over the peaks at a blistering pace. Cows in the valley respond by doing what is natural. They run (as fast as cows can) away from the storm. In doing so, they waste energy, get separated from each other, and spend more time in the misty clouds. They end up lost and weary.
Buffalo, on the other hand, chose a counter-intuitive approach. They pack together and run directly into the storm. In doing so, they still get wet, but they remain together and get through the storm quicker.
At Ironbridge student ministry, we want to provide a community for your students to face the challenges of life with other Christians. They do not have to be alone. They can have a Christian community mixed with older believers and people their age.
We are accomplishing this aim by providing Wednesday night gatherings at 6:30 pm that involve a free dinner, worship from a student-led band, and biblical preaching. On Sunday’s at 9:15 am we gather again for an hour of breakfast items and discussion groups rooted in God’s truth.
This month we will continue to cultivate community through a Friendsgiving Dinner providing an opportunity for students to invite their friends.
And for those who are young adults, a gathering has begun on Monday nights at 6:30 pm in the students building. If you are an 18-29-year-old who is seeking Christian community, this is a perfect opportunity and time to explore this group.
As we move into a season focused on thanksgiving, know that we are grateful for your prayers and support.
From Children’s Director Tammy:
November is the month we focus on thankfulness and gratitude.
We are thankful to have kids meeting in-person on Sundays during the 10:45am Service. Thank you, families, for your resiliency in adapting to added processes and faithfully supporting Children’s Ministry. As a reminder, pre-registration is required for Sunday Service. Go to Church Center App, click Events, click on BridgeKidz Logo. Registration opens Every Monday for the following Sunday and Closes Saturday at 11:59pm for all kids, infants – 5th Grade.
A big Thank You to the BridgeKidz volunteers who work as a team every Sunday to prepare lessons and activities with the kids, and to follow through with all the additional cleaning and sanitizing every week. They do this because they love your kids and your family. All scheduled volunteers wear masks, and responsibly social distance during class time. Hand washing prior to service and hand sanitizing is encouraged as needed during service.
We are grateful to each of you for honoring the kids’ time each Sunday at 10:45am. You have allowed us to secure the entire BridgeKidz Wing to maximizing social distancing and minimize the number of people the kids are exposed to while in the building.
What’s Happening in BridgeKidz?
Have you wondered what the kids are doing each Sunday? Beginning November, there will be large signs with the theme, weekly Bible Lesson & focus, bottom line, memory verse, and key question for pre-school, elementary, and pre-teen classes. These will be located near the Check-in Area in the Gathering.
We are updating the Parent Resource Area in the Gathering
Wait! What? There’s a Parent Resource Area? There is, and we are revising it to provide grab-n-go resources for families. Beginning November, there will be God-Time Cards for k-3 kids for weekly devotionals, at-home activities to do with pre-school kids, and Family Guides for our Pre-teen families. All of these resources are linked to the lessons the kids are doing in their Sunday Classes. This is just the beginning!