Updated: Nov 14, 2019
ST. PAUL'S, a family for those seeking to make a breakthrough journey to a deeper relationship with Christ and one another.
St. Paul's is embarking upon a breakthrough journey toward an awakening, where anyone is invited to experience and show the love and joy of Jesus. Our family will be a tapestry of relationships where life and faith are shared in authentic communication and trust.
We will practice Worship, Scripture, Prayer, and the Presence of the Holy Spirit such that we discover God's overwhelming love, become whole and tell everyone about our journey.
In a season when many question the endurance of St. Paul's, even Christian faith itself, we will encourage each other on this journey.
Now more than ever Christ urges us, of every generation, not to draw inward, but to open our hearts to our neighbors.
"In the Last Days," God says, "I will pour out my Spirit on every kind of people: Your sons will prophesy, also your daughters; Your young men will see visions, your old men dream dreams." Acts 2:17
We will foster leadership development, doubling the number of our leaders equipped to train and mentor us in spiritual transformation.
Thus, as maturing disciples, we will widen our circle of friendships among all generations in our Northeast Heights neighborhoods. A revived St. Paul's will discover innovative strategies of the Holy Spirit to engage multiple venues for the mission. We will "move into the neighborhood" (John 1:14) and share not only the gospel but our personal lives as well.
A revived St. Paul's will discover innovative strategies of the Holy Spirit to engage multiple venues for the mission.
This vision flows from a seminar of 20 - 25 leaders of St. Paul's back in March of this year. At that seminar, we became aware of the need to become deeper and more specific as to the purpose of Transformation in our mission statement. Our Breakthrough Vision calls us to see Transformation as we Become (the 1st paragraph), and as we Engage (3rd paragraph).
First, we describe how, over the next 3 years, we will implement a process of Become, of developing spiritually as disciples. We conclude this vision of spiritual growth with these words:
"We will practice Worship, Scripture, Prayer, and the Presence of the Holy Spirit" Such that we discover God's overwhelming love, become whole and tell everyone about our journey."
I treasure that word, "whole". It reminds the meaning of the work for salvation in the New Testament "sozó". This word has two fields of meaning that overlap one another. One is to be saved, forgiven. The other is to be healed, made well. "Whole" is a strong way to state the original word "sozo." Whenever we become deeper disciples of Jesus, we become forgiven and healed at the same time – we become "whole". As we become whole we become a community of wholeness, of healing, of wellness. A healing community becomes therapeutic in our neighborhoods. We become agents of wholeness!
We are also an Engage congregation. We believe that we have a powerful calling to go into the neighborhoods of the northeast heights and be agents of healing. Our Engage paragraph states this not as a process of "handouts" to the hurts and wounds of our mission field, but in a process of coming alongside and sharing our lives with our neighbors.
We will develop ministries of engagement that prioritize the development of relationships.
We will seek to pour our lives into one another - and into the lives of our neighborhoods and the life struggles, we find there.
"A revived St. Paul's will discover innovative strategies of the Holy Spirit to engage multiple venues for the mission. We will "move into the neighborhood" (John 1:14) and share not only the gospel but our personal lives as well."
One last thing!
Notice our 2nd Paragraph in our Breakthrough Vision. Here we express why St. Paul's should do these things, and do them now! It is because when God's people open themselves to the Holy Spirit, as we are doing in our 100 Days, etc., God gives fresh vision and dreams to all generations of our fellowship.
"Now more than ever Christ urges us, of every generation, not to draw inward, but to open our hearts to our neighbors."
In the next 3 months, you will be reading and hearing about multiple ways we will continue to implement our Breakthrough Vision.
The first of these is our "Engage Sunday", November 17th. Read more about this special experience in this Epistle.