Sundays, Services & Mission
A large amount of Jesus’ time was spent not just with the disciples, but with the disciples on mission. Time spent in community was no doubt important but it was done with an intent focus on mission. There was different aspects involved, some separate, some interweaving with the others. As the disciples leaned in over a meal or a walk, Jesus talked about mission. Other times when He was teaching them what a parable meant, it was learning with an inward focus on the heart. Still at times of speaking to crowds or healing people it was opportunity to leverage mission upward for the glory of the Father.
We have wrestled with this at Life, both individually and communally. How can we always keep a focus on the mission that Jesus gave us? In what ways are we creating more opportunities for our not-yet-believing family and friends to be welcomed into this family? Making disciples who make disciples will always present opportunities for a church body. We have one before us now: making more space during our Sunday worship gatherings.
There are things that can act as unintended hinderances to people gathering to worship as a body in the space God has given us at Sterlings Middle School. Ever pulled into a parking lot somewhere and, after driving around a bit, decided not to go in? What about walking into a movie theater and seeing only the front seats open? While you’ve already paid and thus have to go in, you still wouldn’t choose those seats if you had other options. Maybe been in crowded spaces and held a death grip on your children because you didn’t want them to get lost in all the chaos. All of those experiences are amplified at church, no matter where the church is.
For us to offer more opportunities for people to hear the gospel and to help make disciples who make disciples, the best way to move forward is to offer a second Sunday gathering. Some of you may remember when we had two services when we met at Lincoln-Hancock Community School or perhaps when you first came to Sterling we had two services. As God has grown His church, we have seen some of those hinderances present themselves again. The move to two services—one at 9 AM and one at 11 AM—will help to alleviate these challenges.
First, some logistics:
• the services themselves will be identical, one at 9 AM and one at 11 AM
• the first Sunday we make this missional move will be on Palm Sunday, March 20th
• LifeKids will be provided at the 9 AM service only
• nursery care (under 3 years) will be provided at both services
We want to make this intentional move with mission in mind. To that end, we are seeing this as another opportunity for all of us to participate in mission. Now, where we all come in: we are asking three things of you, one inward, one upward, and one outward. Inwardly, please pray and then commit to one service so that we can get a good idea on serving and other things pertaining to our worship gatherings. You can indicate your preference in this brief online survey. Because Jesus first served for the glory of the Father, we are asking that you consider a similar upward posture and consider serving. Specifically, we especially need an influx of people serving in the nursery as we will be providing that at both services. Finally, providing more space for our not-yet-believing family and friends requires an outward act of us: inviting them in. This is where it becomes intentionally missional.
Please join with us as we remember what God has done, as we participate in what He’s calling us to do right now, and as we anticipate what He is going to do in the future!