May 19, 2021

Dear Friends,

Two things this week.

First, masks.

As I said on Sunday, our plan is to transition this week to a “mask optional” for our Sunday morning worship service. Most of you know, the Centers For Disease Control has issued new guidelines, saying that people who have been fully vaccinated can go without masks in most settings. Those who have not been vaccinated should continue to wear a mask to protect themselves.

Here in Arkansas, State Epidemiologist Dr. Jennifer Dillaha said that she agrees with the new CDC guidelines. “Of course, people who are fully vaccinated can safely go without wearing masks. My concern is that people who are not vaccinated will also go without wearing masks and increase risk not only to themselves but to others.”

We are reserving the south section of the worship center (the section nearest to the parking lot) for people who need to or choose to continue wearing a mask. If you sit in this section, please, for the sake of those around you, have a mask on.

If you have been vaccinated and elect to not wear a mask, please keep an appropriate distance from those who are masked.

In addition to going “mask optional,” we will also re-institute our practice of having people come forward in the service to receive communion elements. For those who would prefer to continue using the pre-packaged elements, you can continue to pick up the communion pack as you come into the worship center.

I know some of you, for a wide variety of reasons, don’t feel comfortable gathering together on Sundays yet. The live stream of the service will still be available.

Any questions? Email me if you have some.

Here’s the second thing.

When we moved into our church building almost two years ago now, we knew one of the things we wanted to add as soon as we could was an outdoor play area for our kids.

Well, it’s time. And we need your help.

We are making plans to order and help install a commercial grade play area on our property, at the back of our education wing. It will look something like this (in earth tones, not primary colors):The playground will include wood chip surfacing and perimeter boarders. If you’re interested, you can drive by and check out the playground in the Pleasant Valley neighborhood, by the neighborhood pool on Happy Valley Road. The company who will provide the equipment and supervise our installation is the same company that did that project.

As we’ve talked about the play area, we’ve agreed that we’d all love to have more than just the playground. We’d like some benches. Some shade. A fence that surrounds the playground and provides some additional play space. Even a second area for littler kids to pay (something like this, maybe):Installing the big playground will cost about $28,000. Adding everything else will just about double that cost.

This is where you come in.

We’d like to go ahead with as much of the project as we can afford. To do that, we are hoping we can raise $30,00 in the next 30 days. The good news is, we’re already half way there.

Here’s what I mean by that. I was sharing about this project with someone recently and they said they’d like to add some extra motivation for each of us to contribute to this project. They said they will match every donation we receive that is designated for this project dollar for dollar, up to a total of $15,000. That means any donation you make between now and June 15 for this project will be effectively doubled. And each donation makes us possible to move forward with some of the play area add ons – the fencing, shade, benches, etc.

Help us move forward with, not just a playground, but a “Playground Plus” project by making a designated donation. If you make your donation online (by clicking here), just send an email to let us know your gift is for the Playground Plus campaign (

I’ll keep you up to date on our progress over the next 30 days. Thanks in advance for whatever you’re able to do to help us great a great play space for our kids!

Speaking of donations, next time you’re at the store, don’t forget to add a few packages of hot dogs, some small bags of chips or some individually packaged cookies. Leave them in the kitchen. We’ll need them for this:

Our first picnic, June 2, will feature a food truck. Your family can have all the tacos you can eat for just $10 per family! Singles, you can form your own family, or pick the family you want to adopt you for the night, and it’s taco time! We’ll have bottled water for everyone. A game time for the kids. We’ll have a shaded area. Bring some folding chairs. And some friends.

Lots of interest in the Gun Lap study for older guys this summer. Here again is the info.

Jesus knew the mission He was on would require a sacrifice. He knew it was His Father’s will that as the Good Shepherd, He would have to give His own life for His sheep. No one took His life from Him. He willingly offered Himself for us.

We’ll be back in John 10 this Sunday.
See you in church.

Soli Deo Gloria!
Pastor Bob

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