CityLife Church Update

We have recently finished an eight-year season of working towards a Vision 2010 Statement that was a way for us to take seriously our mission to “Raise up fervent followers of Jesus Christ who will reach out and impact communities, cities and nations for the kingdom of God.” This year, we move forward into a new chapter in the life of our church. Our Mission remains the same but we will shift to a more qualitative approach to ministry.

Jesus’ PLAN for His Church

After His resurrection, Jesus spent a lot of time with his disciples preparing them for their mission after he would return to heaven. In one meeting on a mountaintop, he gave them a clear PLAN. Many people call it the Great Commission (see Matt.28:16-20). This plan contains one urgent command – “make disciples!” Other aspects such as “going,” “baptizing”, and “teaching” are supportive to this single clear mission. This is the FOCUS we have chosen for 2011 and beyond: FOLLOWING JESUS. It is about being and making disciples. Of course, all of this is only possible through the POWER of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:7-8).

FOCUS 2011

As we FOCUS on FOLLOWING JESUS, we will be looking at five important ACTIONS that are interrelated in this pursuit. FOLLOWING JESUS requires these ACTIONS:

1. Surrendering to Jesus as Lord

Jesus loved crowds of people but he didn’t come to build a crowd. He came to gather together a group of disciples who were passionate about and committed to him and his kingdom purpose for the world. Although he called people to come, to follow, and to believe, ultimately he called them to surrender the leadership of their lives to him.

Our goals for this year in this area include:

Encouraging full surrender of every area of life to the loving leadership of Jesus (Mt.16:24-25. Lk.14:25-35).

Creating a stronger focus on Jesus Christ in every aspect of personal and church life (Col.1:15-20, 27; 3:23-24).

Fostering a radical obedience to the commands of Jesus as the ultimate act of worship (Jn.14:15. Lk.6:46-49. 1Jn.5:2-3)

2. Contributing in Service

Jesus did not come to be served but to serve and give his life for the benefit of others. He calls us as his disciples to do the same.

Our goals for this year in this area include:

Encouraging a serving attitude as a basic outlook for life (Jn.13:15. Gal.5:13. Phil.2:3-5).

Assisting in the discovery, development and use of God-given gifts and abilities (1Cor.12:7. 1 Pet.4:10).

Emphasizing a balanced use of time between family, work/study, community and church activities (Eph.5:15-17).

3. Going on Mission

Jesus saw himself as being sent by the Father into the world on a specific mission. After calling his disciples to follow him, he also sent them out in the same way the Father sent him – on a mission. Mission is for everyone and includes our local, community and global responsibilities.

Our goals for this year in this area include:

Developing a mission mindset as a core part of our personal and church calling – to impact communities, cities and nations (Jn.17:18. Mt.28:18-20).

Equipping people towards confidence in sharing their faith in Jesus with others (Rom.1:16. 1 Pet.3:15-16).

Encouraging a regular investment of time in meaningful conversation with people who do not yet know Jesus (Lk.15:1-2. Col.4:5-6)

4. Loving other People

Jesus demonstrated a love of another kind – a love that was a choice to always act in the highest good of another person, regardless of who they were or what they had done. As disciples we are recipients of this love and Jesus calls us to love other people in the same way.

Our goals for this year in this area include:

Promoting love as THE mark, measure and goal of every Christ-follower (Jn.13:35. 1 Cor.13).

Encouraging the development of meaningful relationships in every area of life (Ps.68:5-6. Jn.13:34).

Strengthening family relationships through teaching, mentoring and skill-building (Eph.5:21 - 6:4).

5. Growing towards Maturity

The goal of every disciple is to become like his or her master (Luke 6:40). Jesus calls us to a life-long journey of becoming more and more like him every day. This is a process that usually includes our own spiritual disciplines, life’s experiences, the work of the Holy Spirit, as well as input from other people.

Our goals for this year in this area include:

Promoting growth in Christ characterized by godly character and Spirit-filled living (Gal.5:16-25. Eph.5:18-20. 1Tim.4:7).

Developing the habits of daily prayer, meditation on God’s Word, and active church involvement (Mt.6:6-15. 2 Tim.3:16. Heb.10:23-25).

Encouraging personal growth through active service, training, coaching and accountability (1 Tim.4:12-16. Heb.13:7).

Sample Discussion Questions

1. What are your thoughts about Vision 2010 and how it served CityLife Church over the last eight years? Which achievement excited you the most?

2. Discuss our FOCUS for 2011 and beyond, which is on FOLLOWING JESUS – being and making disciples.

3. Which of the five actions of a follower of Jesus most stirs your passion?

4. In which area do you believe you need the most growth?

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