our core values
our foundation: The gospel
The foundation and fuel of our core values is the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is at the center of everything we are and do as a people.
What is the gospel? It is the astonishing good news that Jesus Christ as God became a man, and in our place lived the life we should have lived and died the death we deserve to die. His resurrection from the dead is the central event of human history, bringing the everlasting hope of heaven to the worst of sinners and renewal to our broken world. When we lovingly trust in Jesus and let go of our self-saving strategies (whether irreligious autonomy or moral “goodness”), we find true life, joy, peace, and purpose. We live our present lives in the hope and security of God’s gracious promises of the gospel.
our Core Values
The gospel transforms our relationship with God from one of hostility, dread, or indifference to one of reverent joy and intimate love. At the heart of the gospel is the enjoyment and praise of God in worship and prayer as we behold His worth and beauty. In our services, we value worship that is God-centered and Christ-exalting, preaching that is expository (explaining the text of Scripture) and gospel-centered (expounding all biblical themes as climaxing in Christ and his work of salvation), and prayer marked by repentance (contritely turning away from sin) and faith (joyfully turning as a forgiven child of God to Christ’s grace to do his will).
The gospel is the power of God to radically change lives from the inside out. The gospel not only “gets us into heaven” but “gets heaven into us” as we align every dimension of our lives to its gracious truth. The cross of Jesus Christ establishes us in a new, eternally secure identity that sets us free from the pride and fear of trying to prove our own worth. It also frees from bondage to those things that once futilely drove our significance. We now live not “needing to get” love, esteem, success, or control, but out of “having already received” God’s loving acceptance. We live by faith in the Son of God and his precious promises, not by self-reliance or self-justification. We desire to see both those who see themselves furthest from God and those who assume themselves to be closest equally changed by the sheer grace of God through the gospel.
The gospel does not only save isolated individuals, but creates a new humanity knit together in community as the body of Christ. Belonging to the church is integral to gospel life and is not optional for the Christian. The grace of God compels us to dwell in community, loving and extending grace to people we once disdained or envied. A gospel community is marked by grace, love, and humility between fellow weak, messed up, sin-strugglers, as opposed to a community of performance where people put on the appearance of moral uprightness, success and respectability. In a culture of gospel grace, people are free to be vulnerable about the deepest of struggles and weaknesses, and open to loving care, counsel, and accountability for gospel transformation.
People who are being transformed by Jesus Christ understand that the gospel exists not solely for our personal progress and fulfillment, but it is the redemptive truth to which we are to give ourselves for its progress and fulfillment throughout our broken world. We desire to be on God’s worldwide gospel mission both locally and globally as He allows, praying for and working towards the advancement of God’s kingdom. Recognizing that the local church is central to this mission, we believe the best way to bring the gospel to bear on people in particular contexts is through the launching of multiple local congregations. In a vibrant gospel-spreading congregation, members work together to share the gospel with neighbors, classmates, co-workers, and friends, and embody the gospel in their love for one another and for their neighboring communities. We believe we can help spread the gospel most effectively throughout our region through site multiplication, church planting, and partnering with other local churches.
Gospel Mercy & Justice
The gospel shapes us to be a people who sacrificially serve our neighbors and the poor because of the salvation freely given to us through Jesus’ sacrificial love. We derive our life of active compassion and mercy from our identity with Jesus our King, who came to serve and not to be served. Instead of living to increase our private kingdoms of self-serving power and wealth, our new mode of existence is “power through service” and “wealth through generosity” as demonstrated at the cross. We especially seek to show mercy to the poor and seek justice for the weak and powerless, ministering the gospel through word and deed.