Welcome to Northminster

We are a biblically-based Presbyterian church seeking to experience and share God’s love to transform our homes, community and the world. We hope you will join us.
 

Join us this Sunday!

We have Sunday school for all ages at 9:45, and the worship service is at 11am. We look forward to seeing you! Click here to find out where we are and get in touch. If you are not able to join us in person, we invite you to follow our livestream, which you can find here.

Upcoming Events

November 2021

Tuesday, November 30

12:00 pm – 12:30 pm
Lynchburg Daily Bread Meal Distribution

December 2021

Wednesday, December 1

10:30 am – 11:30 am
Pastor's Midweek Bible Study - In Person: Hebrews 10:18ff
10:30 am – 11:30 am
Pastor's Midweek Bible Study - Online: Hebrews 10:18ff
7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Choir Practice

Sunday, December 5

9:45 am – 10:45 am
Adult Sunday School: Adult Sunday school
9:45 am – 10:45 am
Sunday School (all ages)
11:00 am – 12:15 pm
Online Worship
11:00 am – 12:15 pm
Sunday Worship
6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Sunday Night Live

The Latest from our blogs…

November 2021 Pastor’s Corner – Dancing With The Devil

Tell me something, my friend. You ever dance with the devil in the pale moonlight? — The Joker
 
Don’t… tempt me Frodo! I dare not take it. Not even to keep it safe. Understand, Frodo. I would use this ring from a desire to do good… But through me, it would wield a power too great and terrible to imagine. — Gandalf
 
Something’s been nagging at the back of my mind for the past several months, and I thought I’d work through it with you in this space. Sometimes things happen in our lives and culture and we wonder how to think it through biblically, and that’s what I hope to do here.
 
Have you noticed the incredible surge in advertisements for sports betting apps recently? You can hardly watch anything on TV or stream on the internet without being barraged with advertisements for these apps. This has happened because sports betting became legal in Virginia as a result of two bills that passed through the Virginia General Assembly last year.
 
Now a referendum is coming up for Amherst County on the November ballot. Voting “yes” on this referendum will allow pari-mutuel wagering in the county. If it passes, a Rosie’s Gaming Emporium will open in Seminole Plaza. By this point, this should be old news — the amount of money and effort being spent to promote this referendum and change is pretty amazing (that alone should be cause for concern). It’s being presented as a “win-win,” particularly for Madison Heights and Amherst County. Bringing in Rosie’s, we’re told, will jumpstart a much-needed revitalization and transformation of our community.
 
I suspect this isn’t going to work out as we expect. Every time I see an ad for those betting apps or Rosie’s I keep thinking about the quotes at the top of this article. Take the lottery for example. It was supposed to provide a financial windfall for public education. But how has it worked out? The amount the state spends on education has been significantly reduced, a reduction almost directly related to the amount received from the lottery. So instead of a significant increase to education spending, schools have the same amount of money available.
 
This is what happens when you try and dance with the devil. He lets you think you’re leading and makes all sorts of wonderful promises, but it’s always too good to be true. He offers us shortcuts to the things we want, often even the things we need, but never comes through on delivering. Satan even tried the same thing with Jesus, telling him that if Jesus would serve Satan instead of God, then Jesus could accomplish all he came to do without the pain and suffering of the cross. But Jesus didn’t bite, because he knew it wasn’t true (you can read about this in Matthew 4).
 
We, as a church, have committed to being an active part in “transforming our homes, community and the world.” But there’s a key part of the transformation we want to see happen: the power of God. In fact, our purpose statement says that we are “seeking to experience and share God’s love to transform our homes, community and the world” (emphasis added). We want to see the Kingdom of God come so that Amherst County can experience and be transformed by God’s love and grace. There are no shortcuts in this work, and you can’t use the devil’s tools to accomplish it. Jesus said, “How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.” (Mark 3:23–24)
 
Honestly, I am sure Rosie’s might well provide some good for our community and our county. I’m sure you can win some easy cash using those betting apps. However, when the devil comes promising blessing, you can count (I was going to say bet, but the irony stopped me) on there being a catch. As Paul warned the Corinthians, “For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.” (2 Cor. 11:13–15) There might be some good… there will certainly be more bad that comes from it. Is it really wise and good to promote anything that will surely increase addiction, poverty and family dysfunction — issues that are already running rampant in our area?
 
As the saying goes, “the house always wins.” At the very least, you can count on Rosie’s getting more out of Amherst County than they put into it. There are better ways to revitalize Madison Heights and Amherst County. It might take longer and more work, but it’ll be better for the people and the community in the long run.
 
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. — 1 Peter 5:8–9)
 
Blessings,
Rev. David Garrison

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October 2021 Pastor’s Corner – Taste And See

Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good!
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him! — Psalm 34:8
 
Thursdays are becoming something of a problem for me. That’s the day you’ll find The Wandering Donut 2 in the Town & Country Shopping Center, and I am of the opinion that Wandering Donuts are some of the best donuts you can find in the greater Lynchburg metropolitan area (Mama Crocketts are pretty darned good, too). The only thing working in my favor is that I rarely drive past that shopping center — out of sight, (usually) out of mind. The thing about donuts, though, is that they aren’t something you eat to satisfy your hunger; they provide very little nutritional value. The donut is entirely about the experience, about throwing a party for your taste buds, a little sweet something for your sensory system that brings a smile to your face. Talking about a donut doesn’t come close to explaining what makes a good donut so incredibly fantastic; hearing others share their donut stories (like this article) can’t convey the delight that a donut can deliver.
 
I enjoyed my donut this morning (a maple bacon donut, since you asked, which was invented in heaven and brought down to earth by the angels) along side a steaming cup of coffee as I spent time in Scripture and prayer. As my soul was nourished by the Word and the Spirit, and my taste buds were tickled by sugar and bread, I thought of the Psalm quoted above. The life of faith, the journey of walking with Christ, is one that is meant to be experienced and savored. So often we intellectualize and compartmentalize our faith. We talk about it, we are inspired and encouraged by the stories others share of their relationship with God, we even spend time studying our faith and our Bibles. Those are good things to do…but they can’t compare to the actual experience of “taking refuge in the Lord,” of “tasting and seeing that the LORD is good!”
 
In Revelation 10:8-11, the Apostle John is given a scroll by an angel, who says, “Take and eat it; it will make your stomach bitter, but in your mouth it will be sweet as honey.” (Rev. 10:9) We “taste and see” when we live out what we read in the Bible, when we spend time with the Lord in prayer, when we love our neighbor as ourselves, when we love the Lord with all of our heart, mind, body, and strength. Sometimes, that will taste bitter to us, such as when the Word of God or the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sin. Often, it will be as sweet as honey, like when we are overwhelmed anew with the wonder of God’s great love for us. Unlike a donut, any time spent in God’s Word and in prayer, even if we aren’t fully “tasting and seeing” is good for us. It really is a case of anything is better than nothing. But if infinite joy and delight, if “more and better life than you’ve ever dreamed of” (John 10:10, THE MESSAGE) is being offered to us, why wouldn’t we want to experience as much of that as possible?
 
It’s been almost an hour since I partook of that particularly potent pastry, and my taste buds are still smiling. Tasting the joy of the Lord satisfies our soul in a way that is far more rich, true and deep. What is keeping you from tasting and seeing the goodness of your Lord today? How might you experience His lovingkindness more fully this week? If that’s something you’d like help with, reach out and let us know.
 
Blessings,
Rev. David Garrison

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What Is Sunday Night Live?

For the past several years, we have had a strong and healthy youth ministry (grades 6th-12th) meeting on Sunday nights.  But we got to thinking: Why should the teenagers be the only ones to have all the fun?! On Sunday nights we are looking to provide opportunities for everyone in the church to learn more about who Jesus is, grow as disciples of Jesus Christ, and build strong, healthy relationships with each other.  Sunday Night Live provides age- and developmentally-appropriate programming, games and lessons to meet Christians of all ages wherever they may be in their walk with Jesus Christ.
 

Who is Sunday Night Live for?

Sunday Night Live is for anyone who wants to learn more about who Jesus Christ is and the life He offers each of us, and those who want to grow deeper in their relationship with Christ.  Right now, we are offering two programs at Sunday Night Live.  As more people plug in and express interest, we will expand the opportunities accordingly.  If you’re looking for a Sunday Night Live program, but don’t fit in the groups we’re already offering, just ask!
 
F.A.S.T (Fourth, Fifth And Sixth, Seventh Together)
Our late elementary & early middle school group is called FAST and is for all students in 4th through 7th grades.
 
Youth Group 
The late middle school and high school group is called Youth Group (because we’re just creative like that) and is for all students in 8th through 12th grades.
 

When is Sunday Night Live?

Sunday Night Live is (somewhat obviously) every Sunday night, from 6:30-7:45pm.  We will take some Sundays off for holidays and special events.
 

What Happens at Sunday Night Live?

Over the course of the evening, we’ll play games, study the Bible, build relationships with each other, and share the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  
 

Not Just Sunday Nights, Though

While our “program time” will be on Sunday evenings, we believe that we grow as followers of Christ throughout the week.  A couple of  key components of Sunday Night Live are devotionals for the students to use throughout the week, and emails for parents to help them connect with and grow alongside their students.  We firmly believe that no one has more impact on the life of a student than his or her parents, and we want to come alongside parents as they grow with their children in their relationship with Jesus Christ!
 
Weekly Student Devotionals
Weekly student devotionals can be found by downloading the YouVersion Bible app (it’s free!) from your phone’s App Store.
 
Parent Cue Emails
Parent Cue emails are sent out at the beginning of each series.  Simply let us know you’d like to receive these emails, and we’ll be sure to add you to the list!
 
If you can’t tell, we’re really excited about Sunday Night Live.  Whether you are a regular worshipper at Northminster or not, you and your student are welcome to join us.  If you have questions that we didn’t answer above, be sure to let us know!

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Upcoming Event Changes at Northminster

Due to the current state of COVID infections in Amherst County, we have made a couple of changes to upcoming events that we wanted to bring to your attention.
 
  • The Community Worship Celebration at Madison Heights Baptist Church on Sunday, September 19 has been cancelled. We look forward to partnering with our sister churches in Madison Heights for other opportunities in the future.
  • The Kickoff for Sunday Night Live, originally scheduled for this Sunday, September 12, will now be next Sunday, September 19 from 6:30-7:45. Look for more information about this via email and mail in the days to come.
  • Sunday Morning Worship will continue to be offered in-person and online.
 
We continue to be grateful for the wise and prudent manner with which you are handling the pandemic and these outbreaks. As we are not seeing many of you on a regular basis, please do not hesitate to reach out to us if there’s anything we can do for you. You are all in our prayers!

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Sunday Night Live Kicks Off September 19!

SUNDAY NIGHT LIVE is finally here!

For All Students in 4th-12th Grades

Mark your calendars and plan to join us on Sunday, September 19 at 6:30pm for the kickoff of Sunday Night Live! This is a brand new opportunity to teach our children and youth about the fulness of life offered by Jesus Christ and how to live as disciples of Christ. With age-appropriate and focused lessons and games, we’re really excited to see how Sunday Night Live encourages our children and youth in their walk with the Lord and their families as well. Want to know more? Plan to join us September 19!

**Note: Feeling left out? Wish there was a Sunday Night Live opportunity for your younger children or perhaps for adults? Talk to Sharon Bryant, chair of CE, or David Garrison. While we’re starting out focused on 4th-12th grades, we’d love to expand beyond that. All you have to do is let us know you’re interested!


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