A Vision

Jesus instructed his apostles, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28: 19-20) Jesus provided very simple and powerful instructions. In his book “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten,” Robert Fulghum provides some very simple rules for living. At the top of his list, his credo for life is this: Share Everything. We need to do the simple, powerful thing–share Jesus with others.


The Power of a Mission

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:36-38 NIV). Webster’s dictionary includes these words to describe love: warm attachment, enthusiasm or devotion. While we can never fully describe what it means to love God, we can take those words to attach some description of this command. We are called to be in constant contact with God – attachment. We are asked to fully express our feelings toward Him and comply to His will – enthusiasm. We are implored to exhibit our bond and indebtedness to Him – devotion.


Love People

God created us with the desire to serve and Jesus made it clear as Christ followers, we are to serve. He didn’t just tell us, He showed us. One of the most well-known example is when He washed the feet of His disciples at the Last Supper. That simple act shocked His band of twelve, but He was teaching them by example. At First Christian, serving others is part of our mission and we are given numerous opportunities to serve, both locally and globally. God provides us with gifts that allow us to serve people in different ways. Serving others is our calling as Christians and we must answer the call.


Serve with What You Have

In Matthew Chapter 25, Jesus tells us when we serve others, we are serving Him. In verse 35 He says: “For I was hungry and you fed me. I was thirsty and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger and you invited me into your home.” God calls us to a service far beyond anything we could ever imagine. We were put on Earth to make a contribution. God designed us to make a difference because He wants us to give something back. In the Bible, the words “servant” and “minister” are synonymous, as are service and ministry. God has a ministry for us in His Church and a mission for us to serve others.


Honor the Truth

The Bible was written over a time span of 1,600 years by 40 authors beginning with Moses and ending with John. It was composed by kings, shepherds and prisoners. It contains over 300 prophecies about the life of Christ that were written over 400 years before His birth. No story, no fact contradicts any other story or fact in the Bible. Every message written by each of the 40 writers was inspired by God. If the Bible is read cover to cover, the consistency of one theme becomes apparent-it is God’s story of His love for each of us and how He redeems each of us. All that is left for us is to read it and believe it.


Be Bold and Intentional

Good intentions accomplish very little. Significant accomplishments almost always require taking bold actions that are based on focused intents. Being bold is usually uncomfortable. It’s much easier to avoid risk and the possibility of failure. But throughout history, God has honored people who act boldly to accomplish His work. This has certainly been evident in recent years at First Christian and we are confident there are greater things to come. Fear, passivity and trepidation are attitudes that need to stay in our past. Purposeful, bold, actions need to define our present.


Deep and Wide

Stand on the rim of the Grand Canyon – look down, look side-to-side, look across…to understand it, try to see it all. How deep is it, how wide is it and how far across is it? It is so big we cannot see it all, nor comprehend its size. How big is the love of Christ? We must look to the Kingdom. When Paul prayed for the Ephesians, he prayed they “May have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ.” (Ephesians 3:18) Our earthly understanding has so many limits. When we have faith, when Christ dwells within our hearts and we focus on the Kingdom, then we will grasp the fullness of God’s love.


Excellence Matters

We’ve all more than likely heard the words, “If it is worth doing, it is worth doing right.” We all are upset when we buy that “lemon” product that just doesn’t work correctly. We expect the things we spend our money on to work right and perform the tasks that were promised to us. God also expects his products of love, grace, mercy and truth to be conveyed in a manner that is not only productive but is also of the highest quality possible. Colossians 3:23 tells us “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.” God expects us to strive for excellence in all that we do for Him.

The Cool Kids’ Table

In 1 Corinthians Ch. 9, Paul talks about the need for us to step out of our comfort zone in order to lead people to Jesus Christ where he says: “I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel that I may share in its blessings.” (NIV) Jesus calls us to be in the world, but not of the world. He was known as the friend of sinners, but He never compromised His holiness. One way to keep our balance is to keep our goal–to save some–in view at all times. Our reason for going into the world is not to participate with them in whatever they are doing, but to lead them to Jesus.