who we are
The church is more than just a group of people who hang out together around a shared belief system. The church is meant to grow and develop in a number of ways. To grow numerically like any healthy family, to grow spiritually and emotionally as individuals, to grow in our love and devotion to God, and to grow in our love and care for one another. What does that look like practically?
It's all about Jesus. We believe that He is our saviour and our lord. He sacrificed His own life to set us free from sin and its effects. He conquered death through His resurrection and therefore He is worthy of our praise, our thanks, our worship and our obedience. Worship is more than just singing songs, it is an attitude of love and devotion to our lord.
Jesus instructed his followers to “Go and make disciples of all nations, teaching them to obey everything I have taught you” (Matthew 28:19-20). Paul the apostle further taught the early church that they were called as ambassadors for Jesus, with a job of reconciling the world to God (2 Corinthians 5:18-20). The fundamental mission of Jesus followers has not changed. We are called to take the good news of Jesus and His kingdom into all the world. Demonstrating his love, compassion, goodness and power without fear or favour to every person. We want to the world to know who Jesus is and to know his love, goodness and power. We want them to know his willingness to set them free from their past and bring them into a new and full life.
The second key component of our culture is discipleship. This means that every believer should come to understand their new identity in Christ, and how to successfully apply His commands and teachings to their life. We want every person to have a solid foundation in life. To be rooted in God. To know Him as father, friend and helper, and to find their peace and security first and foremost in Him. In practical terms this means that we meet in small groups regularly, sharing our stories, being accountable to one another and seeking to grow and to become more like Him.
There are a number of metaphors used in the Bible to help us understand the nature of the church such as a body, a flock, a bride, a house. The picture of the church as a family is one of the most helpful. Jesus once said that those who do his will are part of his family (Matthew 12:47-50). This is helpful for us to understand not only how we should relate to one another, but also the depth of that relationship.
Like a family, the church is made up of people who love and are committed to one another. Brothers and sisters, fathers and mothers, sons and daughters, who want the best for each other and who spur one another on to be the best they can be. Each of us, unique individuals, with different gifts and abilities, different strengths and weaknesses, different roles and callings, yet all equal in value in God’s eyes.