New Message Series: Keeping the Main Thing, the Main Thing
Students have moved onto their campuses. Classes for all ages are now, or soon to be in session. Professors and teachers are cueing up their lesson plans. Every year, the school education schedule is like a gate – once we enter through it, we find ourselves in a new space. I find this gate to be true for church life as well. Labor Day is like gateway opening to a new schedule. Summer is waning and Fall is waxing. As temperatures cool month by month, the pace of life may actually ‘heat up.’
It’s a perfect time to discern, what should my commitments be? How can I manage my time to engage the things that matter and lead to growth and to good balance? Where do priorities match up with activities?
I would like to encourage everyone to consider, where does faith and spiritual maturity and growth fit into your current priorities? For you, your family, your significant relationships. Where does Jesus fit? How about spiritual growth disciplines such as prayer and scripture leading to spiritual vitality work into your schedule? How about the church community? The practice of hospitality and the many ways of service?
Every September, I engage in a 2-4 week kickoff series on a mission/vision theme. This year, I’ve reflected on the essential nature of God’s church and what are its most important characteristics. For 20 years of ministry life in the pastoral role, I have wondered what it would be like to plant a new church. What would be the main thing to gather a faith community around? What is most important? And how would this faith community function? What would it look like? This four week series defines an answer to these questions: Christ Centered and Biblically Grounded, Engaged in Authentic Community and Radical Hospitality. (4 weeks: Keeping the Main Thing the Main Thing – August 29th – September 19th)
Sunday, we begin with Christ Centered. In past ‘Texts of the Quarter’, this characteristic of the church and the community of God’s people rings true. Simply review some of them: Philippians 3:7-11, Ephesians 3:16-21, Philippians 4:4-9, Hebrews 12:2, Revelation 1:5, 8, 17-18, 3:20… and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Looking forward to Sunday: What is one of the main things that makes the church the church? CHRIST CENTERED! And living into it is everything.