Christopher StitesComment

5IVE

Christopher StitesComment
5IVE

This past Sunday our church celebrated it’s 5th year.
Our church isn’t perfect.
(And PSA, we’re not trying to be.)
We have our stuff.
We are a group of sinners…so we sin.
Sin against God and against one another.
We don’t have the corner on how to “do church”.
In some ways, we are still figuring this thing out.
Yet, in spite of it all, God has been present & active among us.

Here are 5 things I am encouraged by in our church that I hope will encourage you as well!

1. STORIES. We count something more important than attendance. Sure, we care about growth and numbers because each number is a person, and they matter to us and God. And although we are seeing numerical growth, what we count more, what we applaud more, what we weigh more, are the individual stories of transformation. The raw stories of real repentance, real forgiveness and real obedience. Sometimes in churches we do this silly thing where we think that more people = healthier. I’ve made that mistake often. But Jesus isn’t asking us to be big, He’s asking us to be faithful - and we are understanding that more and more.

2. PASTORS. We have 6, soon to be 7, qualified, humble elders (pastors) that serve the church faithfully. Each of our covenant members are under the care of a specific pastor so as to make sure know one is being overlooked and each member is being rightfully cared for.

3. GRACE. For the most part, we all know we are a bunch of undeserving sinners who are not entitled to any of the graces we get to experience together and individually. Gratitude is a real thing here in our church and it’s not just because it’s a value. We are, more and more, understanding the scandalous grace of Jesus directed toward often scandalously unholy people. Grace is less of a “Sure, you can add that to my religious life” thing to us and more of a “If I don’t have this, I am screwed” type of thing. We know it's not about us because good still happens to comes even when we fumble and faulter.