The leader of an Alabama church is still praising God and “rejoicing” after his house of worship caught fire and sustained severe damage.
Listen to them on the latest episode of “Quick Start” 👇
Pastor Sean DeMars of Sixth Avenue Community Church in Decatur, Alabama, published a Facebook post explaining he was informed about the blaze around 4:30 a.m. on Jan. 1.
Tragically, the building was deeply impacted by fire, smoke, and water damage.
“The entire meeting hall was consumed, and the rest of the building incurred significant smoke and water damage,” he wrote. “What caused the fire? The investigator on the scene said that the fire was caused by a wall heater in the foyer at the main meeting hall entrance.”
DeMars then posed a rhetorical question — one that offered a telling look into the depths of his faith.
“What now?” he asked, before proclaiming: “First, rejoice!”
The preacher shared Paul’s words from 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, which reads, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
Considering the monumental loss, pain, and chaos the house of worship and congregants are surely feeling, this encouraging reminder truly stands out.
DeMars went on to offer prayer points for church members and others to ponder, with each of those prompts starting with a faith-building word: “rejoice.”
“Rejoice that God’s will for our church is always good,” he wrote. “Rejoice that no one was hurt.”
You can see the full list of prayer areas in the original post:
DeMars also encouraged parishioners to pray and be there for one another, specifically mentioning the need to offer invocations as he and others deal with insurance issues and figure out how and where to gather this upcoming Sunday.
In a follow-up Facebook post, the church said it is “OK to grieve the loss” of the building so long as Christians don’t “grieve like those who have no hope,” citing 1 Thessalonians 4:13.
And in yet another post on Jan. 2, DeMars continued to encourage those grieving by sharing verses about the importance of rejoicing in all circumstances.
Continue to pray for DeMars and Sixth Avenue Community Church members as they deal with the many details still being figured out.
***As the number of voices facing big-tech censorship continues to grow, please sign up for Faithwire’s daily newsletter and download the CBN News app, developed by our parent company, to stay up-to-date with the latest news from a distinctly Christian perspective.***