OUR PHILOSOPHY 

Our View of a Healthy Church
 
It is the role of pastors to shepherd the church toward spiritual health. My evaluation of a healthy church is one that is spiritually alive for the glory of God. Below are some questions we use to self-evaluate our health. (Much of the following is based off of: 9 Marks of a Healthy Church; The Deliberate Church; and The Trellis and the Vine.)
 
The following are questions we use to regularly evaluate the health of our church:
 
• Are we known as people who love one another?
• Is our ministry gospel-driven?
• Do we regularly practice intercessory-prayer?
• Are we vision-motivated?
• Do we experience authentic-worship?
• Are the messages feeding the people with applicable, expository-messages?
• Are the pastors and our people servant-leaders?
• Are our people engaging in personal mentoring?
 
 
These next set of questions are used to help evaluate some problems that might cause our church to be unhealthy:
 
• Are we focused on numerical growth instead of spiritual growth?
• Are we defending the status quo or our comfort instead of a Biblical vision and agape-sacrifice?
• Are we bound by traditionalism or contemporary innovation instead of strategic, intentional, doxological Biblicism?
• Are we presenting mixed agendas?
• Are we exclusive in our relationships within the church or do we invite into our fellowship believers from all backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, generations, and social classes?
• Are we imbalanced in any way?
 
 
Our Philosophy of Music
 
  • Center on God (Ex 15:1, 21; Ps 115:1; Ps 100) Congregational singing is a corporate expression of delight in God’s character and work. Therefore, all corporate singing must seek to bring glory to God as we sing about God.
  • Be Filled with the Word (Ps 95-96; Col 3:16) Singing is a way for the church to sing the truths of the Word corporately as a spiritually united body. Therefore, worship songs should never contradict the Word, and, more importantly, must accurately communicate truth and be saturated with the Word.
  • Point to Redemption (Ps 113, Rev 5) The response of the Redeemed is to sing of that redemption and of their Redeemer. We see that in the songs of Moses, Deborah, David, Israel, and the believers in heaven. Therefore, singing in the church must focus on communicating and celebrating the gospel.
  • Unite Text with a Complementing Tune (1 Chro 15:22; 1 Cor 14:15) Musical worship should not aim for professionalism or be haphazard, but the musical team should have an appropriate level of proficiency and be sufficiently prepared to lead the church in worship. A song’s tune should not distract from worship but support and enhance the message of the song.  Therefore, the musicians should aim, with the text, the tune, and the presentation, to create an environment that draws the congregation’s attention to the Lord and His work.
  • Incorporate Appropriate Diversity (Psalms , Eph 5:19 1 Cor 10:31) Worship must not aim for traditionalism or contemporary innovation, but it should aim to glorify God and to edify believers in consideration of the cultural diversity of the church.  Therefore, musical worship should incorporate songs that magnify the glory of God and reflect the cultural diversity of the local church and of the surrounding community.
  • Stir the Inner Man (John 4, Eph 5:19; Col 3:16) Congregational singing should help each disciple experience a range of feelings from contemplation to thanksgiving to sorrow to comfort to awe—as we see in the Psalms. Singing should not aim for emotionalism but the truth in song should cause an appropriate, emotional response. Therefore, singing and instrumentation should stir the heart of each believer to enjoy the Lord in an emotionally, Christ-focused way.
Our Philosophy of Youth Ministry
 

The youth ministry exists to glorify God as we facilitate the evangelization of children in the community and support parents in the discipleship of their children.

 

How we evangelize and disciple youth:
 
  1. We unite in the effort to reach children in our community (Mt 28:18–20).
  2. Parents regularly, formally and informally evangelize and disciple their own children (Eph 6:4; Col 3:21).
  3. The church, as the pillar and ground of truth (1 Tim 3:15), enhances the spiritual life of the home by praying for,               partnering with, and being a support to parents.
  4. The whole church (young and old) intergenerationally influences each other toward Christlikeness (Heb 3:13).
 
 
Therefore, we, as the church:
 
  • Reach the youth and families for Christ in our own neighborhoods.
  • Encourage children and teens to passionately give the gospel and provide opportunities for them to do that.
  • Equip and give opportunities to servant volunteers to minister.
  • Edify parents with classes, resources, and personal shepherding.
  • Provide childcare so parents can focus on the Word without distractions.
  • Encourage intergenerational worship, activities, and relationships that unite the whole church family together.
  • Give a clear discipleship plan that families can use in the discipling of their children in the home and complement that teaching by using materials in the classroom that harmonizes.
  • Provide youth classes/groups that are guided by three purposes: to inspire mutual edification among Christian youth, to give youth opportunities to serve, and to partner with parents to enhance discipleship.
  • Create a culture in which parents are taught biblical principles in parenting but have the freedom to apply those principles in the way they believe the Lord is directing them.