This weekend is the annual retreat for several of the leadership teams of our church. On Friday night, the elders will gather and then the rest of the staff and Ministry Team (those who direct our ministry commissions) will join us on Saturday. Much planning and preparation has gone into this retreat and I am hopeful that God will speak powerfully to us and give us a great bond of unity and vision moving forward. I am also excited to spend this time with these leaders. It is a privilege to serve with each of them. I can’t believe it was just one year ago that we agreed God was calling us to pursue our Three50 Initiative. Already, we have seen Him do extraordinary things in and through our church for His glory. This week, we will gather together to ask Him, if it is His will, to do more. We covet your prayers for this important time. Our focus as elders will be on strengthening the members of our church family (Matthew 18:15-20, Acts 2:42-47; Colossians 1:3-14) and our church’s call to make and mature followers of Jesus (Matthew 28:18-20; Ephesians 4). When the elders, staff, and Ministry Team assemble we will ask God to give us a greater heart for the lost in our midst and those God is calling us to reach with the Good News of Jesus Christ (Acts 18:10; Romans 10:13-17). We will also continue to talk about our increasing plans to reach our Three50 goals and build a culture of biblical discipleship (Philippians 1:9-11, among many other places).
Would you please pray for us this weekend? Your prayers will be an invaluable way to serve and support us as leaders as well as strengthen our efforts with the power of the Holy Spirit. Here are a few ways you can pray for us:
- Pray that God would stir us to greater affection for Jesus Christ and that, in doing so, we would continually desire to glorify His name in our own lives and in the life of our church.
- Pray that the elders would shepherd the flock under their care well, sensing needs, discerning wisdom, and humbly following God’s call to mature our church in Christ.
- Pray that the Ministry Team would know God’s will for the direction of the ministries with which they have been entrusted. Ultimately, that ministry is the proclamation of the Gospel and the building up of the church. Pray that we would pursue this with boldness.
- Pray for unity, love, and peace among us. This is a group of people who works together very well and has a common vision for the glory of God, but because of our sin and under the threat of spiritual attack, we know it is the Holy Spirit who has drawn us to unity. Pray that we remain there.
Thank you in advance for your prayers! This Sunday, as our church gathers for corporate worship, we will continue our study of the church by actually looking at what God calls local churches to in corporate worship. The question we will ask is, “What does it look like to have the ‘word of Christ dwell richly’ in us” (Colossians 3:16)? Why do we sing the songs we sing, pray the prayers we pray, and listen to the preached Word of God? I believe our corporate worship gathering is the most important time each week in the life of our church. It is vital that we study how God’s Word calls us to use each of those precious moments. I want to encourage you to prepare well this weekend. Pray and ask God to make your heart and soul ready to worship Him with your brothers and sisters in Christ. Rest so that you may be strengthened. Plan ahead so that you will not be rushed and unfocused. Read Colossians 3:16-17 now so that God starts sifting those words in your mind. Finally, expect that God will move, draw near to you, and speak.
I love to worship with you on Sunday mornings!
For the sake of His name,