We are in the process of selling our home and relocating to Beaumont where we have planted a church (the 30 minute commute on Sunday is no big deal but it hinders relationship-building in the community during the week). So we're cleaning stuff out, packing stuff up, and throwing stuff away. Last week I came across a treasure... the notebook that I scribbled six life-altering statements in. I remember seeking the Lord for direction in my leadership at my former church. I sought to put in a few simple statements the convictions the Lord had put on my heart about how Biblically healthy church life and mission. Initially I called these statements "plumblines for healthy church life". Ultimately these became the seeds of the vision for planting Cross Point Church. They grew out of my prayer life and conversations with my wife...
1. We envision a church whose members are always on mission in their lives as fully devoted followers of King Jesus and as faithful givers of the gospel by word and hospitality.
2. We envision a church among whom Christ is magnified and people's needs are met as we worship and hear God's Word together in weekly assembly and as we share life together in home-based small groups.
3. We envision a church who finds its life and vitality in hearing and obeying God's Word as Biblical expository preaching and teaching is presented weekly and as Biblical truth is taken seriously for life application.
4. We envision a church who is a display of God's glory in an ordered creation as we live out the roles of Biblical manhood and womanhood and as we honor and support those set apart as leaders.
5. We envision a church who has a simple program with central focus on Sunday worship and missional home groups so as to avoid feeding a consumer mindset (inside the walls) and so as to avoid taking us off mission (outside the walls).
6. We envision a church who is always reproducing for kingdom expansion as we train leaders and lifestyle missionaries and as we plant churches and start more missional home groups.
The Lord knew I needed to find that notebook just to have my eyes run across those statements again. Some form of them are printed on information brochures about our church and I've articulated these ideas numerous times but it is so easy to lose sight of the convictions that first set us on this course. It is easy to get anxious about attendance and finances and various sorts of issues but we must continues to come back to these measuring sticks. I am so thankful the Lord has set me on this course and thankful for those on this journey with me-- we must keep aiming to be shaped by God's Word and to be motivated by God's glory!