Project 1

project1logo_b_webpostWho is your 1 that God has placed in your life for you to invest yourself into in order to invite them to join you on the journey of faith?  This is a simple question that if left unasked or unanswered will leave you missing a key component of following Christ as a disciple.  Here at Salem, we believe that God has not only called all believers to join Him in the call to make disciples, but He has also uniquely equipped, gifted and placed each believer in their neighborhoods, communities, workplaces, and schools in order to do just that.

During the month of December we are launching an initiative designed to challenge believers to live on mission by first of all asking God to show you 1 person that you interact with on a regular basis (at home, work, school, gas station, hair salon, store, etc…) who is not currently involved in any church.**  If you are unable to think of such a person, we are asking you to pray about places you can begin to go to (such as coffee shops, restaurants, grocery stores, gyms, etc…) where you can get to know others who aren’t involved in church.  Once God has laid that person on your heart, we are asking you to commit to pray for them throughout the month of December and to intentionally invest in a genuine relationship with them.  The goal is to invite them to join you in our Sunday School Small Groups and our Christmas Celebration services in December as well as to engage in spiritual conversations after the event about what they heard and saw.

Will you engage and commit to pray for, invest in and invite at least one person during the month of December?

**Please note:  this is not intended to limit you to just 1 person.  It is simply a place to start.

Where Are We Going?

compasswebblog“Where are we going?” is a question my children ask anytime our family gets in the car for a trip.  After many years of answering this question I have learned that there is one answer my children absolutely hate to hear.  No it’s not “We’re going to your doctor’s/dentist’s appointment,” or “We’re going to buy groceries,” or even “We’re going clothes shopping.”  What gets them more than anything else is when I reply to their question with these 6 little words…”You’ll see when we get there.”  Those 6 words are guaranteed to spur increasingly heated questions as well as frustration and even resentment as they consider the possibility of being taken somewhere they don’t want to be or following someone they don’t trust.  I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes I respond this way because I know it will aggravate them.  Yes, I’m that kind of dad.  Other times it’s because I genuinely don’t know where we’re going, & still other times it’s because I want them to be genuinely surprised when we get there.  What is interesting is that no matter what my reason is for responding with this answer, their response is always the same and always just as strong.

When you stop to think about it, is it any wonder that they respond so strongly?  Those 6 words have the potential to communicate so many different things.  For instance, “You’ll see when we get there” could communicate: : I have no idea where we’re going, You don’t need to know where we’re going perhaps because you’re not old enough, good enough, smart enough, etc…, or simply that I don’t want to tell you.  Naturally, such communication demands another question from them, “Why should I follow you?”

“Where are we going?” isn’t just a child’s question.  In fact it is a legitimate question that should be asked of any group that we belong to not just our families.  This is especially true of the church.  Unfortunately, churches don’t always have a clear answer or they don’t communicate it well.   If we’re going to expect others to follow us without fear, frustration or hesitation then we need to have a clear idea of where we are going and be able to share it with others.

For many months now our church has been involved in what is called ICMP (Intentional Church Multiplication Process).  In this process our Church Health Task Force has been examining our church’s history as well as the current makeup of our community and our church.  In other words we’ve been looking at where we are as a church.  Alongside of these studies, we’ve been committed to studying Jesus’ model of ministry as well as the early church and it’s practices found in the New Testament. The purpose of this was to gain a biblical view of where we needed to be as a church.  After much study, discussion, and prayer we have confirmed what God’s vision & mission is for us here at Salem Baptist Church.  In other words, we have a clear answer for where we are going and we want you to know where we are going so that you can join us:

 

OUR VISION:

Salem Baptist Church exists to make disciples who actively follow Christ, are being changed by the Gospel, and are engaged in His mission in the world.

OUR MISSION: (or how we plan to get there)

Salem Baptist Church seeks to develop a culture:

  • That has abandoned ‘civic-religion’ and become connected to the church by embracing Christ, His cross, His resurrection, & His call to follow Him.
  • Whose worship is intentionally a reflection of heaven & the heart language of our community.
  • Whose prayer is that they and the nations might know God.
  • That understands, values, and acts on the call to multiply by making disciples who make disciples as individuals & small groups.
  • That is committed to doing life together in authentic fellowship.
  • That is equipped to intentionally live out their faith, in word and deed, in the culture around them.
  • That serves one another within the body of Christ.

OUR CORE VALUES:

  • Love for God & fellow man (Matthew 22:37-40)
  • Culture of prayer (Matthew 21:13; Ephesians 6:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:17)
  • Commitment to Scripture (Psalm 119:105; 2 Timothy 3:16-17)
  • Every member a minister, every believer a disciple-maker (Matthew 28:18-20; 1 Peter 2:9)
  • Authentic fellowship (John 13:34-35; Hebrews 10:24-25)
  • Worship & glorifying God not just as an event but a lifestyle (Romans 12:1-2)
  • Evangelism (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8)
  • Family – a commitment to protect and strengthen what God has designed (Genesis 2:24; Psalm 127:3-5; Ephesians 5:22-6:4)

Won’t you join us on this journey as we seek to be…

visionwebtrio

 

 

Getting To Know ICMP

icmpIn case you haven’t heard or aren’t sure what ICMP is all about, let me take a moment to introduce you to a process our church is currently engaged in.  ICMP stands for Intentional Church Multiplication Process and it involves a yearlong (at the minimum) commitment by the church.  The name itself speaks volumes as to what we’re seeking to do.  First of all, consider the phrase ‘Intentional Church Multiplication.’  Believing that God has called all believers and churches to make disciples (Matt 28:18-20); our desire is to intentionally, strategically, & relationally multiply our ministry impact and effectiveness here in the Hollywood community and around the world by making disciples.  The last part of the name ‘Process’ gives a clue as to how we’re seeking to do this.  Rather than simply looking at other churches and trying to copy what they’re doing, we’re looking at what Scripture says should be true about a church and then prayerfully asking ourselves ‘What does that look like here in our community?’  We believe that God has not only done some amazing things in and through Salem Baptist, but also that He desire to do even more.  Through the ICMP process we are seeking to both capitalize on our strengths and strengthen our weaknesses so that we might be a biblically balanced church with a relevant witness in our community.

WHO CAN PARTICIPATE IN ICMP?  Anyone can.  There are two ways in which you can participate.  The first and most important was is to commit to pray for us and this process.  We have a designated team that is committed to praying for the church as a whole and for the members of the Church Health Task Force.  This leads to the other way to participate.  Be a part of the Church Health Task Force.  At the very minimum this ‘team’ consists of deacons and church council members but it is not limited to just them.  Anyone with a desire to learn more of what it means to be a healthy church or even just a curiosity as to what it is about can come.

WHEN DOES THE CHURCH HEALTH TASK FORCE MEET?  There are two meetings per month held on the 2nd & 3rd Thursday of each month beginning at 6:00 pm in the Family Ministry Building.  The 2nd Thursday is our ‘Cluster’ Meeting in which other churches who are participating come for a time of instruction.  The 3rd Thursday meeting is with our Coach/Consultant who guides in seeking to apply what we’ve learned to our own context here at Salem.

WHAT KINDS OF THINGS HAVE YOU DISCUSSED SO FAR?

  • How would it impact our community if we were to close our doors?
  • Where are we as a Church?  Where do we want to be?  How do we get there?
  • Does our church reflect the community that surrounds us? (age, race, gender, etc…)
  • Is our church calendar geared so that relationships can be built outside of church events?
  • What changes must we make to more towards greater spiritual health and community impact?
  • How can we develop leadership that is transformational?