Core values are our non-negotiables. These are things we hold as central convictions and primary objectives. These are our answer to the key question: What are we willing to “die” or get punished for?
For us, it’s simple. We value the Gospel and it’s implications for all of life because Jesus changes everything.
- Gospel-centrality – What matters most is what God has done for us, not what we do for God. Our love for God is in response to His love for us. (Worship)
- Personal Ownership – Jesus changes me. In Christ, I am a friend and follower of God. (Discipleship, Personal Responsibility)
- Family Membership – Jesus changes us. In Christ, we are brought into and made members of God’s family. (Community)
- City Partnership – Jesus changes the world around us. In Christ, we are empowered and commissioned to be ambassadors of and reconcilers for the King. (Mission)
- Generational Legacy – Stakeholder in God’s Better Tomorrow – Jesus changes the world beyond us. In Christ, we are stewards of God’s grace for this and the next generation (Multiplication).
Aspirational values are our sense of a preferred future. They are the end of our working, praying, and life together. They may not be present yet, but one day, hopefully by God’s grace, they will be and in ever increasing ways.
Key Question: What do we want to see happen as a result of our life together and ministry in this place, at this time?
- Generous & Ordinary Hospitality – We are a worshipping community on mission that seeks to “party people into the kingdom of God” & open our lives (homes, schedules, resources) toward others. We give to others because we have been given so much, lavishly and immeasurably by God (cf. Luke 15; 2 Corinthians 8:9; Ephesians 1-2). We open ourselves up to others, sharing our time, talent, and finances, because God the Father, opened Himself up to us by sending His Son to pursue us to the point of death on the cross (cf. John 17; Philippians 2).
- Multi-Generational and Multi-cultural Witness – We are a worshipping community on mission that seeks to defy age, ethnic, and socio-economic categories by our love & respect for others. The kingdom of God is not a commodity of any one nation, tongue, tribe or people; but is a community of people from every nation, tongue, tribe, and people, (cf. Galatians). The heavenly picture at the end of the age is one of the nations streaming into the renewed city of God, bringing their unique gifts to give glory to God for eternity, (cf. Revelation 21-22). We are currently citizens of a heavenly city (cf. Philippians), members of a new covenant community (cf. Hebrews), and a new household of faith (cf. Galatians).
- Creatively Holistic Renewal – We are a worshipping community on mission that seeks to live out our calling and vocation as God’s people in God’s world, living by the conviction that all-of-life is to be transformed by God’s grace & Christ’s Lordship for the good of others (Marriage, Parenting, Vocation, Arts). Grace changes and restores nature because Jesus is redeeming “all things to himself,” (Colossians 1:15-20; Romans 8). God has always called His people to partner with Him in His work of redeeming, restoring and renewing all nouns – all peoples, all places and all things, (cf. Genesis 12; Jeremiah 26; Jonah 4; Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John; Revelation 21-22).
- Church Planting Church/Always & Onward Mentality – We are a worshipping community on mission that seeks to see God’s glory spreads through His church making disciples of others and multiplying healthy churches in sustainable ways everywhere God gives us the opportunity to do so. Our goal is to saturate the world with men, women, and children who love, trust, and follow the Lord Jesus Christ, until He returns (“Always”), and constantly moving out from where we are in any given place (“Onward”) (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8).
Guiding values are how we do what we do. They form the framework within which we operate, make decisions, and move forward as a church. These are not right or wrong, just different and unique. They may be negotiable elsewhere, but important for us. They are tribal markers in the positive sense, by signifying how we do things here; this is what we do, this is who we are.”
Key Question: What are we willing to lose and upset some people over, but won’t apologize for?
- Personal Responsibility and Ownership (The Normal Christian Life) – We are the church – we don’t go to church. We are all contributors to the life and mission of the church; we do not merely consume spiritual “goods and services”. If I see something, I will say something and be willing to do something about it. We take responsibility for our walk with God, growing in grace, the health of the church, and carrying out the mission personally. (1 Peter 2:9, Ephesians 4:11-13)
- Togetherness: Growth and Life Happen Best in Groups (Life Together) – Real life, ministry, and lasting growth happen in groups. A crowd is not a church. It is only as we intentionally relate to others in community that we can, in fact, live out the numerous “one another” passages of Scripture. Success then is best measured and defined by how many people are connected in the community and growing as disciples of Jesus with others. (Romans 12:3-6, 1 Corinthians 12:12-14)
- We Pay Attention to God and Respond Appropriately (Purpose trumps Preference) – We operate and change based on biblical convictions and their application within our ministry context. Therefore we are committed to unchanging biblical principles and applying them with wisdom based missional intentionality, rather than traditions, preferences, or pragmatism. This will mean that there will be times we challenge sacred cows (traditionalism) and we will always eliminate golden calves (idolatry). (Romans 1:21-25; Galatians; Psalm 115:4-8)
- Be Peacemakers, not a Peace-breaker or Peace-faker (The Christian Calling)
- God uses ordinary means to do extraordinary things (Revival Principle)
- Some People Need to Belong Before They Can Believe (Gracious Hospitality)
- We raise the Kingdom Flag over Everything Else (#sameteam)
- Best Way to Learn is to Teach (Move from The Sidelines to Game Time)