February Family Talk
I have to admit...State of the Church Sunday is one of my favorite days of the year...and yesterday was AWESOME!! The choir was great, the praise team uplifting, the hymns meaningful, the orchestra beautiful...and seeing all of our church family together in one room at one time, worshiping together was inspiring! Go ahead and mark your calendar for our next combined service, Sunday, May 29th!
Yesterday, I feel like I came at you with a wall of information forty feet wide and twenty feet high! Over the next several weeks, I will be fleshing out the vision for this year in a number of ways: regular emails from me to you, emphases in some of my messages on Sunday mornings, and newsletter articles will all be included, as well as lots and lots of small group conversations with you in a variety of informal settings.
If you didn’t come away from yesterday with anything else, I hope that you left with the overwhelming understanding that we must shift our focus outward to the community around us and the people literally on our church doorstep who are dying without Christ. Internal issues are important and cannot be overlooked; but they should never, and from this point forward will never, take priority over the main purpose for which Christ placed us as His church in this location: to go, make disciples, baptize them, and teach them. This is why we were founded in 1954, and today, 62 years later, it is still the driving heartbeat of our mission!
As part of our commitment to growing deeper in our walk with Christ, each month we will emphasize one aspect of our Christian lives. This month, our theme is on family. There are several events going on, a new ladies’ Bible study, and a couples’ retreat to Branson. Look around in this month’s Messenger for more information…. We will also continue our emphasis on The Deeper Life, which began with the webcast last month. If you would like to know more about becoming a part of the movement toward having a deeper life with Christ, you can find information about that as well.
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One other really big thing that you need to know about is called 24-D. This is a church-wide discipleship process that we have just begun working on. It is not a program, or a course of study; really, it is a mindset that we will incorporate into our church DNA over the next two years. Every month, on the third Sunday, immediately following morning worship, there will be an open discussion time about a particular aspect of our church life and ministries. Some people have already signed up to be part of a work group to team up between sessions and work on assignments with their friends. Whether you choose to be a part of that work group or not, everyone is invited to attend the monthly discussions. Since our first session was held last month (before you really knew much about it), there will be a “second chance” this Sunday, February 7th, for any of you who would like to get in on the conversation. I can guarantee you that, whether you get involved in the sessions and the ensuing discussions or not, your life will be affected by this two-year process! So, why not go ahead and get in on the ground floor while everything is still new!
This is going to be an amazing year for us as we clarify, concentrate, and re-prioritize our ministries with a focus on reaching off our campus to the world around us. Start looking for ways that you can be a part of changing the world for Christ...one person at a time!