Since it’s the time of resolutions, we thought it would be cool to have a few for our church, so here they are:
1) We will continue to be a place where everyone is welcome. And we mean EVERYONE. Rich, poor, black, brown, white, large, small, gay, straight, homeless, peaceful, angry, doubting, hoping, despairing, you name it, you are welcome. Why? Because Jesus welcomed everyone to his table so who are we to deny anyone access to his fellowship. And, because it makes for a great, diverse environment where we can all learn from each other. If you can’t stand worshiping with certain people down here, you are going to hate heaven, because it’s going to be more diverse than we can ever imagine.
2) We will not wear masks. We will tell it like it is, and encourage you to do the same. We will not have secret meetings, secret decisions, secret committees, or anything that is not out in the open. Evil lurks in the darkness. If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing in the open. We also want New Story to be a place where you can be yourself, struggles and all. We never want anyone to feel like they have to put on a happy face at church. Come as you are.
3) We will always live out our calling to love God and our neighbor. We are a church with a bias towards action. We don’t believe in just talking about making a difference. We believe in making a hands on difference in our community. We will do this through our homeless ministries, our food ministries, our clothes closet, and our outreach to those in recovery. We’ll also have many varied opportunities to learn about Jesus and his great love for us, and how He can help us have a New Story.
4) We will do our very best to keep it simple. We’ve all been to places that have tons of programs that use up lots of time, energy, and money, without making that big of a difference. We won’t do that. We strive to do a few things, and to do them very well. If something seems overly complicated, we believe that might be God telling us to slow down and rethink it. We will also never have so much going on that we burn out our volunteers. We like people to volunteer in one area that touches their heart, and then let God use them in this area to make a difference in our church and our community. Life is complicated. Church shouldn’t be.
And that’s it. Those are our resolutions. Sure, we could think of a whole lot more, but that wouldn’t be simple, would it?
Blessings to all in the New Year, Pastor Scott