Welcome to Grace Community Church in Prunedale, CA

Welcome to Grace Community Church – Prunedale

No Perfect People Allowed

Pastor Bill Hardman

Givelify

Join Us for Outdoor Worship Sundays 10:00 AM

New Covid-19 Update – June 1st Update

We are excited to announce the reopening of GCC beginning with in-person worship outdoors on the game field at 10:00 AM on Sunday, June 7, 2020! Bring your lawn chair for best seating.

As of June 1, California is allowing churches to reopen if they adhere to “strict physical distancing, sanitation protocol and any CDC recommendations.”

That being said, we also know that there will be individuals who are not ready or able to begin coming back for worship services due to health risks.

We will continue our online music and message online on Facebook at 10:00am every Sunday. Printed copies of the messages and/or DVD recordings will be available upon request.

Review this list of things to keep in mind for Outdoor Sunday Worship!

Our Current Sermon Series

I Am Sermon Series

This summer’s sermon series, “I Am”

Check out the church directory here!

Dear GCC Family, (Sat, 6.6.20)

Reflect

Fresh fruit. One of my favorite breakfast meals, a bowl of fresh fruit. Varying kinds depending on the season, banana slices, blueberries, strawberries, maybe grapes, and my favorite, raspberries. Those aren’t the only kinds of fruit obviously, there are many others. Some fruit grows on trees, some fruit grows on those who follow Christ. In fact, Jesus once said, “By their fruit you will know them.” He said something else in one of his seven “I Am” statements, telling us who He is.

John 15:5, I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

If we are bearing spiritual fruit because we’re staying close to Him and His Spirit is working in us then God receives glory, we experience joy, and the world sees what they need to see in us.

John 15:11, I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.

Joyful Christians? A good test of a Christian may be, are they filled with joy? Too many of us seem to be hiding it if we are. I wonder. Do people see Christ’s joy in me? They need to.

I notice something else here. It looks like there’s another benefit to the believer who remains close to Jesus. He seems to suggest that it includes a friendship and special relationship also.

John 15:14, You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

Oh wow! That’s pretty amazing. Does Jesus lift his followers to a new level? We are no longer looked upon a His servants but friends of God. He could have kept us in the dark about His plans, but He has revealed His plans and purposes to us and treated us as friends. What do you think about that?

John 15:13, Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.

These words were directed to His covenant people, Israel. But when Paul is later writing to the non-covenant Gentiles who were by nature God’s enemies he says,

Romans 5:7,8 - For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet perhaps for a good man some would even dare to die. But God demonstrated his love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

Christ died for the ungodly! There’s another matter taken up in this section. Union with Christ leads to communion with God. But it also leads to disunion with the world and its systems. The world system hates Christ, put him to death. No surprise then if it’s hate shows up toward His church, even in a stressful time as quarantine due to Corona Virus. There’s been some of that. You noticed. Christ has rescued us out of this world system.

Stay close to Jesus and be wary of the world. Be joyful, He loves you enough to lay down His life for you. Peter adds some additional thoughts in his first letter to some persecuted believers.

1 Peter 4:14, 16 – If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name.

Pray with me,

Father, thank you for giving us the truth in Jesus. Thank you for giving us your Word, that unfolds for us the story of your love for us and how you have a plan to redeem those who come to you in simple child-like faith. As your followers we want to glorify you in every way. So help us be courageous and gracious in telling others about the one way to you. In Jesus name, Amen.

10,000 blessings,

Pastor Bill
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Dear GCC Family, (Fri, 6.5.20)

Reflect

GPS. Don’t you love it. Anywhere you want to go, any route you want to take you there, anything you want to make sure and see along the way. All you do is open the app, program in the address, look for the hidden icon that in some form says “start” or something like that. And you’re off on your new adventure. When you arrive you will hear the comforting words, “You have arrived.”

I wonder what caused Jesus to claim that he alone is the way, and the truth, and the life. And to make the exclusive and very narrow claim that nobody would ever see heaven and God unless they come by way of himself. I wonder how unpopular that must have been in a pluralistic society like the Roman empire during Jesus’ days here on earth. I don’t wonder how unpopular it is today.

John 14:6, Jesus told him, I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

That’s the fifth time Jesus had the audacity to stand up amidst a crowd of onlookers and his closest believers and followers and utter words beginning with ‘I Am’ followed by some description he claims exclusively for himself. Why does he keep doing that?

Someone has suggested that Jesus, in this passage at least, is addressing people with heart problems. No, not what you’re thinking, not that kind. But the kind of heart problem that steals your sleep and keeps your mind churning during daylight hours, almost incessantly. A joy stealer. This is right where Jesus’ followers were when he shocked them by announcing his soon departure.

John 13:33, Little children, I am with you a little while longer. You will seek Me; and as I said to the Jews, now I also say to you, Where I am going, you cannot come.

I wonder if any of them wondered, “Have we offended him so that he is going to leave us?” There is a clear disconnect between His perspective and theirs. They already feel abandoned by him in spite of several clear instructions about his having to leave them, predicting his death, burial, and resurrection. He had an all encompassing term for it all, glory. So Jesus needs to reassure them.

John 14:6, Jesus told him (and all of them), I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

It was meant as comforting words to them. And to us. His leaving has nothing to do with their behavior. His leaving has everything to do with God’s plan to redeem the world in the only (got it?) way that provide for the salvation of the world. There was no other way that will work. His going away will secure their future with God. It will provide the basis to secure your future with God too.

John 14:2, …I am going …to prepare a place for you. …I will come and get you …you’ll be with me.

So if heaven with Jesus is your preferred destination, be sure to follow The Way, The Truth, and The Life. There is no other way. Says Jesus. And when you arrive, you will hear, “Welcome home!”

Pray with me,

Father, thank you for giving us the truth in Jesus. Thank you for giving us your Word, that unfolds for us the story of your love for us and how you have a plan to redeem those who come to you in simple child-like faith. As your followers we want to glorify you in every way. So help us be courageous and gracious in telling others about the one way to you. In Jesus name, Amen.

10,000 blessings,

Pastor Bill
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