August 9, 2010

The Character & Calling of the Church

Over the past year at The Brook we have established our Core Values - some very biblical principles that we believe we are called to live by as individual Christ-followers and as the church. We are here to: worship. grow. serve. together! This is not only rooted in scripture but evidenced in the first New Testament church in Acts 2:37-47. Yesterday, as we wrapped up our summer series in the Book of Acts, we were reminded of these values and WHY we hold to them. (If you missed the message, click HERE.) But not only do you see the evidence of these values, you see the outcome & results - what happens when we live them out.

In Acts 2:47, there are 2 key things that happen as a result of holding to these biblical values: 1) we enjoy the goodwill of all the people and 2) people come to know the Lord & follow Him. What happens is, because of what the Lord does in our lives INSIDE the church, peoples lives begin to be radically transformed OUTSIDE the church! Doors begin to fly open presenting opportunities to share the love of Christ and the Gospel. The Kingdom continues to grow and spread and advance. Jesus CHANGES things! He changes people!

Biblical Values + Christ-like Character = Kingdom Impact

Because of this, as a Christ-follower, you CANNOT compromise your character. And, as His church, we CANNOT compromise these values. On ANY level! We can't pick & choose - "I like to worship, and growing is great. But serving? Yeah, I'm not so much into that." It sounds ridiculous, I know. And you'd never actually verbalize it! But how many "Christians" are actually living this way? Approaching church - the Body of Christ - as if it's more of a buffet line than a family and a calling? It doesn't make sense. It doesn't work. Period! 

As a church, we have to guard and protect and teach and equip and LIVE OUT these Values. And as Christ-followers, we have to be living as His representatives, displaying His character. (See Colossians 3:1-17) We have to look different. Our lives have to stand out! WE as in you & me, and WE as in us! So my question for you is, are you IN or OUT? Do you actually VALUE these values - believe them? If so, it's time to take some action. God's ready to change you and use you for Kingdom purposes. He's ready to take your church and shake the world through it! You can be used BY God FOR God! What are you going to do?

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