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Local Pastor Encouraged by Response to Online Worship Services: ‘There Is a Sense that God is Doing a New Thing’


Editor’s note: The following article is adapted from a recent Facebook post from Pastor Terry A. Smith regarding the transition to online worsip services and church activity during the recent Coronavirus Pandemic. 

By Pastor Terry A. Smith

I experienced a high level of distress the first week COVID-19 forced us to go all livestream on Sunday. I was more than a little nervous moving all ministry online – preaching to an empty room – with a chat room as the new lobby and amen corner.

And then I witnessed this overwhelming response from our congregation and a lot of good folks who had never visited our church before. Much to my amazement we are ministering to many more people on Sundays than ever in our history. We are serving more people in need throughout the week than ever before. We are engaging more people through the week than we ever have through TLCCTV (The Life Christian Church TV).

The spiritual hunger and awareness and need is palpable. The grace of God preparing us to meet this moment is providential. The opportunities to serve people are endless.

Like many of you, we have had to change almost everything. From working remotely to going all in for everything online. But there is this sense that God is doing a new thing. That nothing will ever be the same and that it will be for our good.

I can’t wait to get back to physically engaging the people I serve and the folks in our communities. But I don’t think we will ever get back to normal. And that’s ok. The new normal will be good. We must seize all the positive possibilities of this moment and prepare for a future that is more and better.

Terry A. Smith is the lead pastor of The Life Christian Church in West Orange and Paramus. He is also the author of the Amazon best-seller “Live 10: Jumpstart the Best Version of Your Life” (Thomas Nelson), and “The Hospitable Leader” (Bethany House).

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