Some observations from yesterday’s service, preached by Jason Malone, no doubt led by God’s Spirit:
- When we steward with open hands, we are putting the gospel on display.
- We believe that doing life with other people that love Jesus Christ — for the sake of those that don’t know Jesus — is essential in our own transformation and living on mission with our God.
- Having access to people isn’t the problem, connecting is.
- It’s not bad to want to go to church to worship, to learn, or to connect, but if our ultimate reason for going to church is about “me” — it’s insufficient. When we treat church like a vendor of services, it is such a limited picture of what God has for His Bride.
- God is asking us to connect with others for the sake of other people. The Church has neglected “for the sake of other people”. Why? It’s messy. It will cost us something. It’s a lot of work. But when we cut this off we are usurping God and becoming a spectator, a consumer.
- Casual connections are good, but they are not life-giving—and we, as the body of Christ cannot settle for less. Why? Because the gospel is at stake.
When we live in isolation:
- We lose perspective. We need other wise voices to help bring life into balance.
- We fear intimacy. If someone knew the “real” us, they would reject us.
- We become selfish. If our life is defined by or priorities and desires, we become self-centered.
- We have poor health. 7,000 people over a period of 9 years were observed. Those who were isolated were 3 times more likely to die. Even those who drank and smoke outlasted those who were isolated!
“Our relationship with others is the criterion the world uses to judge whether our message is truthful—Christian community is the final apologetic.” – Francis Schaeffer
To listen to the sermon in its entirety, visit Summit’s site here. It should be posted by Wednesday.