May 30, 2019

Dear Friends,

Things are about to change.

Including (I hope) one of the reasons why you come to church on Sundays.

If you’re a church member at Redeemer, you’ve already demonstrated that you have a bit of a pioneering spirit about you. And as we get ready to transition to our new church home – our new gospel outpost on David O’Dodd, we’re all going to need to tap into that pioneering spirit in a fresh way.

I imagine you come to church each week for the same reasons I do. To worship God. To sing His praises together. To pray together. To learn from His Word. To take communion together. To see friends and catch up.

As we move to our new home, all of those things will continue to be part of why we gather together each Sunday. But we’ll be adding an expanded component to our weekly gatherings.

We’ll be meeting each week to welcome new friends, inviting them to join us as we grow in grace and work together to advance the work of God’s Kingdom in our world.

Our new church worship center will hold about 370 people. I think it’s possible that space will be nearly full when we have our dedication service for the building on September 8. That’s what other pastors have told us to expect. The dedication service will be a great opportunity to invite friends to join us for a special worship service. We’ll have curious neighbors who will show up. There will be people who have been involved in building the building who will attend that Sunday.

Not only will our worship center be filled. Our nursery will likely be filled as well. And our children’s programs.

And every one of us needs to be ready to play a part in welcoming new people to Redeemer.

Some of you will help with the actual move, carrying chairs and tables and supplies from one location to another.

Some will help us get everything set up and decorated.

Some will help with the plans we have for a special church-wide celebration on that day.

We’ll need more people working as greeters and ushers and nursery workers and children’s leaders, especially on September 8.

And all of us will spend a few hours in the weeks leading up to our dedication service meeting people in the surrounding neighborhoods and inviting them to visit us.

In short, there’s going to be a lot to do to get ready for September 8. And there’s going to be a lot to do in the weeks that follow, as new friends who visit start to feel comfortable and decide to make Redeemer their church home.

There are lots of logistics related to the transition. And we’ll want you to be on one or more of the teams that will be forming in June and beginning to make plans for the transition.

But the most important thing we all need to be doing right now as we prepare for our move is to start thinking about church in some new and fresh ways.

The core of who we are as a church won’t be changing. The reasons you come now will still be at the center of what we do when we gather each week.

What will change is the need for all of us to be ready to welcome and to serve our visitors.

Some will be coming with a history of past church experience, deciding to give church one last chance.

Some will be coming because they are spiritually dry or stagnant and need to be refreshed and challenged and encouraged.

Some will be coming because someone they know invited them and they decided to check it out.

Some will be curious. Some will be on guard. Some will be wounded. Some will be needy.

My prayer is that these people will come and will be warmly welcomed. That they will feel at home. I hope that’s your prayer too. I want these new friends to find fresh hope, new life, and the soul satisfying joy that comes from hearing and believing the gospel week in and week out.

My prayer is that as a church, we’ll be ready to make them feel welcome. That we’ll be there early, ready to greet them as they arrive. Ready to care for their kids. Ready to connect with them. And ready to point them to the place where we have found our hope and peace and joy and life. Ready to point them to Jesus.

We’ll be talking more in the days to come about this transition and how you can play a part. But for now, I hope you’ll start thinking about coming to church not only to worship, to grow, to pray, to learn, to love and to connect with one another. I hope you’ll add “coming to welcome and serve our visitors” to your list of Sunday morning priorities. I’m convinced the extra effort it will take on our part to serve our visitors will have eternal consequences.

This coming Monday night, our Summer Study starts at 7:00 at the church. Here again are details.

There’s still time to purchase your copy of Everyone’s A Theologian. You can order it online from Amazon here.

And again, here’s the assignment for our first session. Read Part One: The Introduction. Ask yourself two questions as you read. 1) What is one thing that jumped out at me as I read that I hadn’t considered or thought of or understood before? And 2) What is one idea presented here that the average person in our culture (non-churched people) might disagree with?

Remember, the study is open to anyone, including friends you know who don’t attend RCC. The more, the merrier!

And be sure to check your church calendar for details on these upcoming June events:

  • Kid’s Summer Fest starts June 12.
  • Burgers and Bros also happens on June 12.
  • Our church wide Pizza at the Pool party is on Tuesday night, June 25.
  • And we’ll gather for an evening of Hymns and Prayers at our new church home on Sunday night, June 30.

In 1 John 2, the Apostle John tells us that we ought not love the world or the things of the world. Does that mean the Amish and the Monastics have the right idea when it comes to pursuing godliness?

We’ll look this Sunday at what the Bible tells us about worldliness.

See you in church.

Soli Deo Gloria!
Pastor Bob

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