Earl McClellan, spoke in big church a few weeks ago and delivered a sermon called: We Are The Church - Part 1you can listen here. He lays out the strategy of how our church is going to reach our community and I've never been so excited to be a part of what's going on here.
Our hope is to shift away from a professional clergy based church model. We want our congregation to see themselves as priests. We want people to think about church as something so much bigger than what takes place on Sunday. I'm guessing that this is the sort of thing that lots of churches talk about and kick around. We've talked about this paradigm for years now, but something is different now.
The people we work closest with are youth workers, young adults, and singles. They are getting it. There have been numerous occasions of them beating us to the hospital when someone is sick, having a baby, or going through a hard time. Personally, I'm realizing the work of a Pastor, to train and equip the saints for ministry. It's happening and it is beautiful. I can't wait to articulate some of these ideas to our middle schoolers this Sunday.
The big idea of the sermon comes from Jesus' words to Peter, "the gates of hell will not prevail against you." Jesus is in a sense calling a play for us, the Church (with a big C). He's saying, "beat back the gates of hell, beat back the gates of hell." It's up to the team and me to train these kids to be "Jesus with skin on" to their families, schools, and neighborhoods.
I'm not going to talk long, just set up this idea. Then we're going to do it. We had planned to have someone donate 10 inches of their hair on stage to locks of love, but the hair stylist fell through. Instead, we're having a Funraiser (yes FUN raiser) for Caleb's Place - an orphanage in Caleb Koke's memory. We'll also have a station to get them in a connect group and another for them to fill out cards for kids in Dell Children's hospital. Should be fun!
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