The following five core values were discerned through an intentional process of prayer, listening (to God and our congregation), and earnest deliberation. We believe them to encompass our identity and calling in this next season of our life together. The sentences following each value provide detail but are also dynamic and therefore subject to modification as we live them out together.
Risk Together the Messy Path of Faith
Wrestle with the Tensions in God's Word & World
Immerse in Sacred Spaces & Rhythms
Do Good For Christ's Sake
The strategic focus is a guide for leadership decision-making. It derives from our core values.
Cultivate a deeply relational community and cross the gaps that divide.
“To cultivate” taps into the Hebrew word meaning to till, serve, work or worship. The Lord gave the first humans paradise of Eden to cultivate and keep (Gen. 2:15). As people made in God’s image, we are invited to participate in God’s work in the world. Jesus picks up on this imagery with his parable of the sower. Seeds sown in cultivated soil yield a hundredfold return (Mark 4:20).
To “cultivate a deeply relational community” prioritizes the practice of love, kindness, honesty, forgiveness and grace—every element of strong relationship—for the sake of personal well-being and rich community. But deep relational community is not an end in itself. Our expectation is for deep community to yield a hundredfold return of good fruit for the world.
Among this fruit is the ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:18-20), and thus the commitment to cross the gaps that divide. As a noun, the cross sits at the center of our faith, symbolizing both the costly love of Christ as well as the cost of following Christ. As a verb, to cross implies the movement we must make in order to engage and embrace, to confront and speak truth, to love and to reconcile. Such movement mirrors Jesus’ movement toward us to reconcile us to God.
Therefore, as a church, we will promote programs and practices that cultivate a deeply relational community and cross the gaps that divide, be they personal, social, theological, political or cultural.
Because we cannot do everything, we seek to do those things which we value and for which we are primarily gifted and called. These priorities will increase in specificity over time as leadership and congregation prayerfully plan for the future. The initial six priorities fall into two categories, “breathe in” and “breathe out.” Breath is a prominent symbol (and reality) in Scripture for the Holy Spirit and for life itself.
- One Body. Infuse our five core values into all aspects of Meetinghouse's life so that everyone knows and feels connected to our identity and calling.
- Spiritual Growth. Generate pathways for healing, equipping, forming and educating disciples with Scripture and by the power of the Holy Spirit.
- Creation. Foster beauty in all we do to experience the fullness of God.
- Engagement. Leverage our individual and collective resources and strengths to participate innovatively in God’s restorative work.
- Intergenerational Relationships. Develop and strengthen meaningful relationships between people of differing ages, stages and life experiences.
- Social Justice. Confront social injustice to transform hearts and minds.