Dear church, as we discuss opportunities for serving in our community this Sunday, I wanted to share with you some thoughts on why we are doing this.
Jesus came as King to restore a broken and sinful humanity. Jesus calls unlikely followers who make unlikely companions, and history has shown us that in His kingdom, the world’s values do not apply. His life and ministry demonstrated that He had come to restore both the body and the soul, to reverse the effects of the fall.
We as the church, by His power, are to do the same until He returns!
As City On A Hill grows and lives out her life in Brookline and metro Boston, we must seek to follow the Spirit’s leading to push out rather than focus in. We must make ourselves available to build bridges into our neighborhoods to tell the good news that in Jesus, all people and things can be made new.
Holistic ministry and its goals
We recognize that oppression, unmet needs, and poverty are the result of relationships that do not work, that are not just, that are not for life, that are not harmonious or enjoyable.
To truly meet the needs of those in our midst and in our neighborhoods, we must engage in a ministry of reconciliation: moving people closer to glorifying God by living in right relationship with God, with self, with others, and with the rest of creation.
Therefore, reconciliation of relationships is the ultimate guiding principle for all of our efforts in mercy and justice. We must engage with the marginalized, oppressed, and the “least of these” in ways that point them to Christ, so that they can be reconciled to Him and receive the full shalom (peace) of God.
Our goals are NOT:
To make people who have less into middle-to-upper-class North Americans
To make sure that people have enough money
To complete projects or produce products for people
Rather, our goals ARE:
To restore people, through the power of the gospel, to a full expression of humanness.
To demonstrate what a just, loving, peaceful relationship is as we point our neighbors to Christ.
To equip or develop our neighbors to fulfill their callings of glorifying God by working and supporting themselves and their families with the fruit of that work.
To genuinely care for those in our neighborhoods and invite them to share in our lives, and not just our moments of service, even if it takes sacrifice.
Our vision is for the following outcomes:
All of our Community Groups engaged in sharing Christ both in word and deed with the marginalized, downtrodden, and oppressed in our community and within our church.
Justice and mercy efforts resulting in more diversity at CoaH that reflects our neighborhood and city.
City On Hill’s reputation becoming one of generosity, love, and openness to working with other churches and non-Christians, all for the glory of God.
We are not just trying to meet physical needs as much as possible in the city. Rather, we are praying that we would grow in response to God’s great mercy to us in Christ. Only by knowing more of Jesus and His love for us will we have power to bring the message of Christ forth in a counter-cultural way!
- Pastor Mike