Online worship videos in response to COVID-19

Here’s a link for the live stream video, which starts at 10 a.m. on Sunday. If you join late, the link will also have a recording of the video, but you can skip the first few minutes, as the recording will start a bit early. We have occasionally had problems with losing our internet connection during the service. If this happens, wait a minute and refresh the page; hopefully the stream will resume shortly:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRBwwgP3i9WyxHsF41HCU9A/live

This will have the full Sunday video after the service is finished:

https://youtu.be/2DiNE8rm9Q8?t=325

Here’s a link for the children’s lesson:

https://youtu.be/iQcvX_gYoT0

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ICF has resumed meeting in-person Sunday mornings at 10 a.m.!!! We are very glad to be meeting together again! Our foremost concern is the health and safety of those who attend the services. Below is a list of precautions that we will be taking in order to follow directives from both the Kenyan government and Rosslyn Academy:
  • Parking will be outside the gate.
  • Each person will be required to go through temperature screening as they enter campus. Their name and temperature will be recorded. If anyone registers a fever, that person and those living in their immediate household will not be allowed on campus.
  • For the time being, ICF will be meeting in the gym, which is an open air venue, rather than in the auditorium.
  • Everyone is encouraged to arrive by 9:45 in order to get through the screening process and walk to the worship service venue before the service starts at 10:00.
  • People must wear face coverings at all times while on campus. If an individual is not able or willing to wear a face covering for any reason, they are invited to view the service online, and to return to ICF in-person services after face coverings are no longer required.
  • If anyone has cold symptoms (e.g. cough, runny nose), they should remain at home.
  • The church will not serve snacks or coffee.
  • Anyone attending the service is required to remain at least 1.5 meters from others at all times.
  • Chairs will be set up 1.5 meters apart for use during the service.
  • Hand sanitizer and sinks will be provided to wash hands before entering the service venue. All congregants must use one or the other.
  • The service will be live-streamed on the internet as well as recorded for people to watch later. Please go to this page on Sunday morning to find the link for the live-stream, which starts at 10 a.m.
  • There will not be children’s Sunday School, per the Kenyan government. However, we will provide activity sheets for children to work on during the service.
  • Rosslyn has asked that children do not play on the playground equipment.
We are so looking forward to being able to see each other in person, because we are brothers and sisters in the Lord!

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Oct 27 on Phil 1:22-26

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Oct 25 and the children’s lesson video:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Oct 21 on Phil 1:21:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Oct 18 and the children’s lesson video:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Oct 14 on Phil 1:19-20:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Oct 11 and the children’s lesson video:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Oct 7 on Phil 1:15-18:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Oct 4 and the children’s lesson video:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Sep 30 on Phil 1:13-14:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Sept 27 (please skip the first 8 minutes, and the last part of the service is in a different video below):

Here is the children’s lesson for Sep 27:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Sep 23 on Phil 1:12:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Sept 20 (please skip the first 5:56 minutes):

 

Here is the children’s lesson for Sep 20:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Sep 16 on Phil 1:9-11:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Sept 13 (please skip the first 3:10 minutes):

Here is the children’s lesson for Sep 13:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Sep 9 on Phil 1:7-8:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday Sept 6 (please skip the first 3:10 minutes):

Here is the children’s lesson for Sep 6:

Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Sep 2 on Phil 1:5-6:

Here is the children’s lesson for Aug 30:

Here is our online worship service video for Sunday August 30 (please skip the first 4:30 minutes):

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Aug 26 on Phil 1:3-4:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday August 23 (please skip the first 12:43 minutes):

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Aug 19 on Phil 1:2:

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Update on the Psalm 91 offering: As we reported last week, we used the funds that we raised through this offering to support two organizations in Nairobi. Here are two brief videos that have some highlights of how these organizations used the funds to distribute food, masks, and other practical help to those in need.

Ark School Community Centre Kariobangi

Afri-Life Kibera

Thank you for your generous giving. We are confident that these gifts will be used to further God’s two great purposes of this universe, namely, glorifying the Lord and increasing human well-being in the name of Christ.

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday August 16. The sermon is on Psalm 131:

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Aug 12 on Phil 4:4:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday August 9. The sermon is on Psalm 23:6:

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Aug 5 on Phil 1:1:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday August 2. The sermon is on Psalm 23:5.

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Here is George’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for July 29 on Psalm 37:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday July 26. The sermon is on Psalm 23:4.

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Here is Nate’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for July 22 on Psalm 84:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday July 19. The sermon is on Psalm 23:3.

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:

Elementary Lesson:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/8ecf9344-0cfc-4f12-f90e-bae618ef1d1f
Preschool Lesson:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/db28be2a-1c41-48f5-ba7c-3f8517bc2227

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Here is a link to Catherine’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for July 15 on Psalm 143:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday July 12. The sermon is on Psalm 23:2.

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:
Elementary Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/ff2facb6-93f0-4296-f9fb-fcde17c497ac
Preschool Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/d6ff12a3-402a-4917-ec47-9e8c509311be

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Here is a link to John’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for July 8 on Psalm 73:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday July 5. Pastor Peter is starting a new sermon series on Psalm 23:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:

Elementary Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/e6eae961-4e00-45fc-c7cb-7f8fb36abdf9
Preschool Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/7a6457fa-556a-4ee9-8aff-2dece25c40b1

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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for July 1 on Psalm 27:

FBI (Friday Bible Investigation) announcement: This Friday July 3, Pastor Peter will start a new study on the book of Philippians. It will be a five-week-long series through Zoom titled “Unspeakable Joy.” Please consider joining this study. Here’s a testimonial about FBI from one participant:

“Friday Bible Investigation (FBI) series on “the disciples of Jesus” gave me a whole new perspective in understanding the attributes of our Lord.   By learning about each disciple’s unique characters, strengths and weaknesses, I was able to learn more about the Lord’s way of thinking and how he wants us to lead our life as Christians.  The diversity displayed in His disciples mirrors today’s body of Christ, and the Lord’s interaction with each one of them embodies a profound mystery of the Christian faith.   I’m so grateful for taking the time to teach us this series.  It’s so profound and I have greatly appreciated it.   I’m looking forward to the next FBI series.”


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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday June 28:

FBI announcement: Pastor Peter has been leading a weekly Bible study on Friday evenings (FBI: Friday Bible Investigation) on the topic of Jesus’ disciples. This Friday July 3, he will start a new study for the FBI on the book of Philippians. It will be a five-week-long series titled “Unspeakable Joy.” We hope you can join us through Zoom.

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:

Elementary Classes:

https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/33fc28c3-6678-4abb-859b-c18af145931d

Preschool Classes:

https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/dc632d11-aeac-4b57-f57a-750aa54b2ece

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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for June 24:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday June 21:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:

Elementary Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/42947f42-f1a8-4605-f331-cb779133ef36
Preschool Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/33af7bbc-b2dc-4bd9-a498-0fd5592fdf2a

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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for June 17:

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Here is the Link to our online worship service video for June 14.

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ICF is starting a new initiative to raise funds to help needy Kenyans, many of whom are suffering even more than usual because of COVID-19. We are calling this our Psalm 91 offering. We picked this name because 91 is the reverse of 19, and because this is a psalm about God’s protection:

He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the disease that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.

In this case, God is using us (through our gifts) to protect and provide for vulnerable Kenyans. We will take any food or money that is given and distribute it to those whose basic needs are at risk because of COVID-19—through existing ministries connected to ICF members. The command to help those in need is one of the most common commands in the Bible. The outworking of our love for God propels us to love our neighbors in practical ways. We are asking everyone to consider if you are able to give something towards this. We know we are from a wide variety of financial backgrounds and that many of you are supporting your own extended families and honouring God in other worthwhile ways with your money; therefore, we do not expect this of everyonewe just ask that you prayerfully consider giving.

If you would like to contribute towards this with either food or money, contact us for details: http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us/

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ICF has partnered with BlueSky in its ministry to students for many years. The normal Camp BlueSky has been cancelled this year, but BlueSky has an exciting announcement for those of you with children:

Camp BlueSky 2020: Online Edition! gives your kids the chance to experience a camp day’s worth of activities right from your home each week! This will include videos and PDFs of arts and crafts, activities and competitions, devotionals, and other camp fun created by our team and volunteers. We’ll post the week’s main content on our website each Monday for four consecutive weeks (beginning June 22), and then campers can go through it at their own pace. There will be new content each week and opportunities to share what they’re doing with our team and other campers throughout the week. Register for FREE for access at blueskykenya.org/camp!

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Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons for this week:

Elementary Lesson:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/fdcfad19-cc28-4e9a-a84d-6344c8d75ad7
Preschool Lesson: 
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/db8fe85d-a986-4c81-ee10-af9ae87b6b32

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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for June 10:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday June 7:

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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for June 3:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday May 31. Pastor Peter is starting a new four-week series on Jonah:

– Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:

Elementary Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/e4007718-d96e-48fb-f34d-9df9edb8b135
Preschool Classes:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/15c19857-d47f-4551-ea5b-b8e5c3532dc1

These children’s lessons are created by Lifeway. If you have not yet created an account with Lifeway, do so—it will only take a few minutes. After you have created your own account, clicking the link will automatically pull up the lesson for that week.
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– Offering: Because regular, sacrificial, joyful giving of our finances as an act of worship is an important practice for followers of Jesus, we are encouraging the ICF congregation to continue to give via M-PESA.  It’s also possible to give with an electronic transfer from a Kenyan bank account. It’s also possible to give from a US bank account in way that is tax deductible for US taxes. Please contact us for details on these giving methods. If you are not giving to ICF, it’s still important to be giving somewhere (for your own benefit, for the benefit of others, and for God’s glory), so this could be a good time to help those in need around you.
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Here is a link to Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for May 27:

ICF’s women’s ministry is organizing an exciting opportunity for ladies:

An evening of getting to know Pastor Peter and Rachel!

Saturday, May 30th, 7:30-8:30 pm

If you’d like to join and aren’t on the women’s ministry email list, you can contact us here: http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us

Dear Soul Sisters,

Pastor Peter and Rachel have not had the easiest start to their journey with ICF!  Two weeks after being commissioned as our Senior Pastor, Nairobi shut down.  Apart from seeing Pastor Peter in our Sunday services online, many of you have not yet been able to get to know either of them – or even meet them – and so this is an opportunity to do just that via live Zoom (and see each other a bit, as well!).  

The programme for the event is a short devotion by Pastor Peter, 30 minutes or so of questions & answers, and ending with 15-20 minutes of prayer.

If you have specific questions you would like to ask Pastor Peter and Rachel (either one or the other, or as a couple), please send them to me by Friday 29th by email, text or WhatsApp.  Topics for questions can include spiritual issues, biblical questions, personal questions, Christian living and so on.  (A few questions can also be asked on the night.)

I’m greatly looking forward to this chance to seeing you all, to rejoice and laugh together once again, and to get to know Peter and Rachel better.  Please join us!!!

Together in Him,

Catherine

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday May 24:

Here is the sermon text:

http://icf-nairobi.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Trusting-God-when-He-doesnt-answer-your-prayers-print.docx

For further study after watching the sermon, here are some passages with other examples of people who surrendered the outcome of events into God’s hands while facing hardships:

– 1 Sam 3:18
– Luke 1:38
– 2 Cor 12:7-10
– Daniel 3:18
– Job 1:20-22, 2:10, 13:15

Here is a video that compiles greetings from several church members into one video:

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for May 20:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday May 17:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:
Preschool:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/299f58b4-e4d8-4be8-f155-2f6680519c58
Elementary:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/d44244d4-f10e-44d3-92d7-b52833bed4a9
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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for May 13:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday May 10:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:
Preschool:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/1555b1f4-5d60-4909-e8fd-fa1713170f7f
Elementary:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/d7b6ab98-433d-4887-bc2f-e290e1f7646b

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for May 6:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday May 3:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:
Preschool:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/175487b1-aa84-43e0-ed8c-6c39be25dd8e
Elementary:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/bdae9284-729d-4c3d-89c7-e909f6e81f9d

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for April 29:

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday April 26:

Do you need help or support in any way?

It’s imperative that Christians love each other by carrying out the “one another” commands found in the New Testament (bear one another’s burdens, serve one another, exhort one another, pray for one another, etc.). Even though it’s harder for us to carry out these commands as a church while we are staying separate, we still want to make efforts to love and help each other in practical ways. So if you need support, encouragement, or prayer for any reason, please let us know. We can work to find ways for others in our congregation to “one another” you in appropriate ways during these troubled times. You can contact us here: http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:

Preschool:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/033714e5-85cf-4c60-d2d5-055ff28cf89d
Elementary:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/ae2249c2-887d-456e-a060-5261f11db0af

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for April 22:

Would you like to meet with Pastor Peter and Rachel Chin?

After Peter joined ICF as our pastor, he and Rachel were planning to spend this time meeting with people in the congregation, getting to know everyone better. However, this has not been possible with the COVID lockdown. So Peter and Rachel would love to get to know people in our congregation using video chat through the internet. If you would like to meet with Peter and/or Rachel to get to know them better, or for spiritual encouragement, feel free to contact them here: http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us

Here’s a new idea we have to try to stay connected with each other even if we can’t gather together physically:

We want to see you!

As a congregation, it is sad that we can’t see each other personally and have fellowship! To at least see all of you, we would like to make a fun video of all of us! Please send a 15-20 second video of you or your family with a greeting, dance, or fun thing to share with the ICF community! We will create a fun compilation video for all of us to enjoy!

There are different ways to send the video. Contact us to ask about this: http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us

The video should be in landscape (larger width than height), and the higher the quality, the fresher you will look! It should be really, really short (max 20 seconds). If yours is longer, we will play it faster and make you sound all funny 🙂

We want to see you, wherever you are, and we want to see your whole family! So make it fun!

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Here is our online worship service video for Sunday April 19:

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for today:

FBI (Friday Bible Investigation): Pastor Peter is going to lead a weekly online Bible study using Zoom video-conferencing starting this Friday, April 17, at 7:00 pm. This will be different from our other online videos because it will be a chance to interact with others in real-time. The study will start with looking at the 12 disciples of Christ, and the title of this series is “The Thirteenth Disciple.” Please join us! Here’s the link for the video conference:

Topic: ICF Zoom FBI Friday Bible Investigation
Time: Apr 17, 2020 07:00 PM Nairobi

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us04web.zoom.us/j/9127057890?pwd=MUJRbFRmeCtkTDgvcTlMU2NTcjJmZz09
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Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Here is our online worship service video for Easter:

Here are the links for the children’s Sunday School lessons:
Preschool:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/f3cf4973-51d9-4d5d-ef91-9e251c09142a
Elementary:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/33c97bfa-4e76-4c71-9aad-8a5cfa3d9540

Easter is the most joyous of holidays, so it’s unfortunate we can’t gather together to celebrate, but we pray that you will experience overflowing joy and hope as you worship in your home. Christ’s resurrection from the dead is the event that truly separates Christianity from every other religion: We follow a Savior who not only gave us brilliant teaching while on earth, but has conquered sin, suffering and death—and reigns forevermore—and promises to give us the same victory. His resurrection is the proof and foretaste of the fact that God is making all things new (including us), setting all things right, and healing this world of its brokenness.

The misery we experience is not the end of the story. Suffering will not have the last word. Death will not have the last word. Evil will not have the last word. Poverty will not have the last word. Sickness will not have the last word. Failure will not have the last word. War will not have the last word. Christ’s resurrection means: Peace will have the last word. Joy will have the last word. Love will have the last word. Victory will have the last word. Justice will have the last word. Beauty will have the last word. Life with have the last word. Because Jesus will have the last word.

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Here is our online Good Friday video:

https://youtu.be/Nt7WNd4PMUU

In addition, here’s an encouraging bonus quote from a blog written by missionary doctors serving the poor in Uganda: “Good Friday is a day of devastation, and a day of glory, and a day to ponder the paradox that the extremes of both intersect on the cross. Many times this week I’ve been reminded of my own heart’s desire to blast evil out of the way, to smash it with a lead pipe, to impose a triumphant order on this mucky world. That is what the disciples expected of Jesus. But that was not God’s plan. Being called to the slower path of bearing the weight of malnutrition and poverty and hate and loss: Seeing it, touching it, sometimes experiencing it. That is the way of the cross. That is the way that evil truly meets defeat. That is the way seen only by eyes of faith, Good Friday eyes that squint ahead to believe that Resurrection morning will come.”

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Apr 8:

Here are several announcements related to upcoming ICF initiatives:

Good Friday Service: This week we’ll have a special Good Friday video to help us all reflect on Christ’s death for us.

Easter Service Communion: For this Sunday’s Easter service, we’ll include communion. We hope that you can join us by partaking at home. So please prepare to have some bread and grape juice available to use when you participate in the Easter Sunday worship service online. You can take communion by yourself or with your family/household. If you cannot find grape juice, you can use another liquid. Paul said “Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup” (1 Cor 11:28), so we would encourage you to examine your life and confess your sins in anticipation of celebrating Christ’s victory over sin and death on Easter.

FBI (Friday Bible Investigation): Pastor Peter is going to lead a weekly online Bible study using Zoom video-conferencing starting April 17. This will be different from our other online videos because it will be a chance to interact with others in real-time. The study will start with looking at the 12 disciples of Christ, and the title of this series is “The Thirteenth Disciple.” More information will be forthcoming later this week about this.

ICF Facebook page: We have set up a Facebook page as one more way to get information and interact with others in the church. We hope this will evolve into a space for people to share prayer requests and insights they are learning—we could add a private group for this if it’s helpful to our community. Feel free to check it out and like/follow it and reply to posts. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/InternationalChristianFellowshipNairobi

We are offering these ways to connect that are more than just watching a video because all of us need the spiritual encouragement that can only be obtained by interacting with others (see passages below). We pray that each of you will find ways to nurture your faith during this lockdown.

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Here is our online worship service video for Apr 5. Pastor Peter is preaching on “The Cross: Love so Amazing” from Romans 5:6-8 as we begin Holy Week (the week before Easter):

Because regular, sacrificial, joyful giving of our finances as an act of worship is an important practice for followers of Jesus, we are encouraging the ICF congregation to continue to give via M-PESA. Our number is 0795 715 115. When money is sent, it will indicate that the funds are sent to Loewer Blake, who is the ICF treasurer. This is not his personal M-PESA account—the account is used exclusively for ICF. It’s also possible to give with an electronic transfer from a Kenyan bank account. It’s also possible to give from a US bank account in way that is tax deductible for US taxes. Contact us (http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us) for details on these other giving methods. If you are not giving to ICF, it’s still important to be giving somewhere (for your own benefit, for the benefit of others, and for God’s glory), so this could be a good time to help those in need around you.- It is hard for us to stay connected to each other without gathering in person. However, because we all need the encouragement that only fellowship with other believers can provide, we suggest you look for ways to stay connected with others during this lock-down. Maybe you could be proactive to connect with others using email, phone, or video chat. Hebrews 3:13 is just as applicable now as always: “Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.” How are you encouraging others (and being encouraged by others) daily during these trying times? If you have prayer requests or other needs that our church could help with, please contact us (http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us) to let us know.

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Apr 1:

In addition, here are some thoughts about how to keep your joy and peace in the midst of the current upheaval from COVID-19. These are a few research-based facts about how we as humans tend to react to bad news:

  • When people hear both good news and bad news, they usually fixate on the bad news.
  • Taking in a constant stream of alarming news increases your stress and anxiety—and has long-term negative consequences for your physical health, too.
  • A diet of bad news hurts our ability to make good decisions—especially under circumstances where the future seems uncertain.
  • Negative news can lead us to be less kind and helpful toward others because we are acting out of fear, distrust, and self-protection (e.g. buying 3 years’ worth of toilet paper and not leaving any for others).

And right now, our world is filled with a lot of bad news. So it’s easy for us to be caught in a cycle of fear and distress. I hope that we as Christians can focus on the good news of the Lord’s righteous reign and sovereign goodness and wisdom more than the bad news swirling around us. Then we will be a light to the world in these troubled times as we magnify God as our all-satisfying hope. When we express peace, courage, and love in the midst of trial, it shows that God is more precious than anything else, including health or money. We can have joy even if we lose everything in this world because we are attaining something of immeasurable value that can never be lost: our salvation through Christ. In fact, this is the reasoning that Jesus gives when he commands His followers to rejoice when they are persecuted:

“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven.” (Matt 5:11-12)

So let’s keep our focus on the good news of God and His unfailing mercy and faithfulness—and the riches of our salvation—in these tumultuous times, which will glorify His great name.

Habakkuk 3:

17 Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.

19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength;
he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
he enables me to tread on the heights.

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Here is our online worship service video for Mar 29. Pastor Peter is continuing his sermon series on the beatitudes with “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness:”

In addition, Martha is sending out a weekly email to parents of children who are involved with our Sunday School program with a link to free online resources for kids. If you are not receiving this email and would like to, please contact us (http://icf-nairobi.org/contact-us). Here is the email she sent out yesterday:

Dear ICF Parents,

Through the generosity of our curriculum publisher Lifeway, we are excited to announce that we will be offering families a weekly online lesson from The Gospel Project for Kids. This is the curriculum we have been using on Sunday mornings this year, which Lifeway has simplified and adapted for at-home use. We hope it will prove to be a great resource for your family and a way for your kids to feel some continuity with their regular Sunday morning classes as they interact with a lesson that is presented in a familiar format. Although we are unable to “pick up where we left off” in our Old Testament stories (the lessons provided are from the New Testament), we are happy that our ICF children can keep learning from God’s Word!

Here’s how it will work:

1–Each Friday morning I will send out an email with an “easy link” to the lesson for that Sunday. (If you have children in preschool as well, you will receive a second email, as their lesson/video is a bit different.)
2–Click on the link. The first time you do this, you will be prompted to register/create an account with Lifeway–this is an easy step that should only take a minute or two. After that, you will need to log in with your email and password.
3–Once you have registered or logged in, the weekly lesson should pop up. For example, this week’s lesson is “Jesus as a Child.”
4–Navigate through the lesson following the simple prompts. There will be a personal introduction to the lesson from me, downloadable (and printable) activity pages, a Bible story video, a time to discuss the story using the questions on the activity pages, another video called “Questions from Kids,” and a guided prayer time.
5–Here’s the link to this week’s lesson:
https://curriculum.lifeway.com/#/easy-link/XVMN/e1b67176-6315-4a52-cb31-aaff00a51f57

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Here is Pastor Peter’s WIN (Wednesday Inspiration Now) message for Mar 25:

Peter’s WIN message is very fitting for these times of uncertainty, talking about Psalm 13, where David asks “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?” How do you wait on the Lord with confidence when He doesn’t appear to be answering your prayers?

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Here is our online worship service video for Mar 22:

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Here are changes we are making because of COVID-19:

– Starting this Sunday, we will be having weekly online worship services instead of meeting at Rosslyn. We will cancel any other official meetings associated with the church for the foreseeable future. All of us still have need for encouragement and worship. So we plan to record a video each week with an abbreviated service and post it online. This will help us all to feel connected to each other even if we don’t see each other face to face, and to continue to worship the Lord from our homes. We’ll send out more details this weekend about the video.

– We also plan to produce a shorter midweek video message from Pastor Peter each week. Here is the first of these midweek videos as an encouragement to you in this time of distress:

– Because regular, sacrificial, joyful giving of our finances as an act of worship is an important practice for followers of Jesus, we are encouraging the ICF congregation to continue to give via M-PESA. Our number is 0795 715 115. When money is sent, it will indicate that the funds are sent to Loewer Blake, who is the ICF treasurer. It’s also possible to give with an electronic transfer from a Kenyan bank account. Reply to this email for details on how to do an e-transfer.

– If you know of someone who is not receiving this email, they can contact us to get added to the news email list.

– It’s important that we honor God by living with confidence in Him rather than living in fear, and by loving each other and our community during these difficult times. Even though we are avoiding official meetings, we don’t want to stop our fellowshipping altogether because everyone still needs support and care. There might be some in our congregation that are particularly hurting because of the crisis (e.g. some will lose their income). So feel free to send your ideas to ICF leadership about how we can continue to love and encourage each other while our meetings are cancelled. You might consider meeting with others one-on-one to “spur one another on toward love and good deeds” (Heb 10:24). Let’s help each other to keep our eyes on our magnificent Lord in the midst of turmoil.