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Have you wondered what our 4th area of focus would be if we could only do 5 things as a church? So far our first three have been PrayerDeveloping Worshippers, and Multiplying Missional People and Missional Groups

4) Family - Health & Next Gen Priority

Do you remember what God's first and best way of filling the earth with glory and blessing was? If you asked someone today what God's best way for advancing His kingdom around the world is, you might hear a variety of suggestions. Church. An evangelistic ministry, mission or program. Compassionate acts. Revival prayer meetings. Maybe even your preferred model of church service or teaching. As wonderful as each of those things can be, they are not what God originally had in mind. God's first and -to this day- still His best way of advancing His kingdom around the world is: Family. God didn't put a church, a para-church ministry, Christian school, or prayer meeting in Eden. He put a couple in the garden and instructed them to multiply and fill the earth with His blessing. 

This reality has several implications for us to give serious consideration to today: 

  • This means the most effective environment for nurturing authentic and meaningful faith in your children and teens is family. Parents, close relations and the home are the vital ingredients of discipleship and passing faith along to next generations. 
  • This means we have to continue to give growing attention to equipping parents and grandparents for their important task. And this also means that as a church we need to come alongside single-parent families and households with new, little or no faith to help support the discipleship priority there. 
  • This means that family health is a very high priority for our church. 
  • This means that the strength of marriages is also of utmost importance. 
  • And this all means that topics like relational healing, forgiveness, emotional health, understanding the different generations, and communication are important for us to give time and understanding to. 
  • And lastly, this means maximizing the potential of our Children's and Youth Ministries. While they cannot be relied on to be sole discipler of our children, their potential for spiritual formation, connection and outreach are significant. Let's roll up our sleeves and serve! And let's also give our best efforts at home. 
Imagine with me the noise and messes of more children in our church building. Imagine their laughter and their love for this place.

Imagine with me the sight and sound of more teens and young adults in our Sunday gatherings. Imagine hands raised in worship, tears streaming down faces, and Bibles opened by eager absorbing hearts. 

Imagine with me parents or grandparents on the couch with an arm around a young loved one, eyes closed in sincere prayer for one another. Imagine the safe people and place children find their home to be to ask the tough questions and confess the difficult things. Imagine seeing a bible open in your child's room. 

It seems to me that we're not just imagining a church with a bright future; we're imagining the kingdom of God advancing on earth! 

Even as I write this I realize my need to give more time to this responsibility at home. How about you? Let's grow in this together!

His grace will make a way, 
Pastor Mike 

PS - Any guesses on number 5? Watch for next week's ebulletin!