Hello, neighbors! Yes, 2021 is here and it is already February. Last month, I spent some time talking about the transition from 2020 to 2021. Now, I want to talk more about the vision I rolled out to the neighborhood on January 17th during Sunday morning worship. I believe this is the direction God is leading us in and lead us into a fruitful future at Marble.
The vision begins with the characteristics of what a neighbor is at Marble -
A Neighbor is…
Loving – Showing love or great care towards everyone.
Kind – To each other and anyone new to the neighborhood.
Faithful – Being loyal to God, the church, and the community.
Compassionate – Showing sympathy and concern for all.
Peaceful – Making the neighborhood harmonious, calm, and at peace.
Patient – Being able to accept change or deal with problems without being anxious or stressed.
Joyful – Feeling or expressing happiness for all God gives us.
Generous – With our time, gifts, and talents, but willing to give more when it is not expected.
Respectful – Making sure everyone feels loved and valued in the neighborhood.
From there we move into the Core Values -
1. As neighbors, we are seeking to love God in worship through prayer, preaching, and praise.
2. As neighbors, we are looking to include everyone in what we do with love and respect for all.
3. As neighbors, we are willing to serve others through outreach in our community and the world.
4. As neighbors, we are continuing to grow in our faith with small groups, Bible studies, and mission work.
Then we add our Vision and Mission Statements -
These statements look different than what has been in place but fit better with the rest of the vision.
To be a welcoming neighborhood, so that all may experience God’s love and grace.
To meet new neighbors, nurture their relationship with Christ, and transform the world together.
As your pastor, I am excited to see what the future holds for us at Marble. In our last newsletter, I made mention about changes still to come. Together we will work through struggles. Remember that change is an opportunity for growth, too. We must get in the habit of evaluating our practices and systems to make sure we move forward in a way that pleases God. In my message about this vision, I shared a statement that is hard for some to hear, but is the truth. The church’s purpose is not to make us happy. The purpose of the church is to make us more like Jesus. Knowing we have the chance to grow, share the Good News, and expand our neighborhood, doesn’t that excite everyone?
Please continue to be in prayer for this vision, leadership, Marble, and the neighborhood. My hope is for Marble to become a thriving church. No, I don’t mean the biggest church in town, but one that reminds everyone that they are loved, valued, and welcome to be our neighbor.
Until next time, peace be with you! ~ Pastor Matt