Our Manifesto: How We Desire To Live And What We Value

about

We desire to be people who glorify God in what we think, feel, and do. 

We know we will not always pull this off, for we are still growing into the character of Christ, and we still struggle with our selfish tendency to do things out of our own interest rather than pleasing God and helping others.  If you are looking for a perfect group, keep looking – you won’t find it here!  However, we are committed to “get back up when we fall” – starting over again when we blow it.  Getting back up is part of our faith. 

We desire to be people who love.

This begins by cultivating love for God – through time with him, talking to him (praying), thinking about what he has done for us (contemplation), reading the Bible, worshipping God together and things like that.  These practices help us love God better! It is out of love for God that we are learning to better love our “neighbors” as well – anyone we come across.  We want to love in practical ways that actually meet needs in the community.  This is what Jesus modeled and taught.  In fact, Christ taught that if Christians are known for anything, it should be as a people that loves and serves others.

We desire to help others come to know and love God.

Out of our experience with God, we want others to know and love him too.  God is available to every person regardless of race, background, orientation – everyone.  We believe every individual has been uniquely created and deserves respect, dignity and love.  We aren’t interested into talking people into making decisions about God they haven’t thought through well – no one likes being pressured!  Nor are we trying to get anyone in our “club” so we can feel better about ourselves.  But our lives have changed and still are being changed in so many ways – in good ways – and we want to share that with others.

We desire to live out of a group core values described in the Bible.

We call them the Heart Attitudes.  We are confident you will like them!  While there are many character traits championed in the Bible; we have identified a few of them – seven “heart attitudes” that especially stand out.  Jesus taught that if we work on our values and our attitudes – what is inside of us, we will be more likely to do the right thing when we need to, rather than just giving us a long list of “rules.”

core values

Our Core “Heart Values”

Here are our core values — “Heart Values” as we call them. We would love to hear what you think of them:

  1. Living openly and honestly: We don’t value being one way at church and another way at work or behind the wheel. We strive to be integrated and avoid the two-faced life.
  2. Putting the interests of others above our own: Put the interests of others before your own. Easy to say, not always so easy to do. You’ll probably see us succeed and fail at this one.
  3. Speaking and listening in truth and grace: We want to be humble enough to listen to others, even when we don’t agree, and courageously care enough to speak the truth to them rather than just saying what they want to hear (with kindness of course; we aren’t the Christian Gestapo).
  4. Bearing one another’s burdens with care and respect: Since you haven’t been raptured out of here, it’s safe to say you have some problems in your life. So do we. We recognize that each of us have personal struggles, influences, and issues. So we commit to walking with each other and helping bear these as we must, and overcome them as we can, with the help of the Holy Spirit.
  5. Seeking forgiveness and reconciliation when we wrong or are wronged: When we wrong someone, we try to go to the person, talk it over and make it right. Conversely, when we feel wronged by someone (yes it happens around here too), we want to go talk to them rather than gossiping to someone else and drag their good name through the mud.
  6. Working together with a heart of interdependence and mutual submission: We are doers and we want to love God and help people rather than just talking about it. We believe we do our best and the most of our best when we do things, together, depending on each other’s strengths. This also affects the way we follow. We try to help those who lead us thrive as individuals (that doesn’t mean we “blindly obey” them — we aren’t into that; they aren’t perfect, as you will see). Life is hard enough as it is; so we don’t want to be grumblers and make things miserable for our leaders or each other.
  7. Contribute financially in the work of the community: We want to be generous with our time, our talents and our resources. (Relax. We don’t make you give us your money). You know the old adage: it is more blessed to give than receive? We believe that. God is a God of abundance who has freely given us more than we could have hoped. We want to display this in our generosity as people as well. We can, if we all give, together.

There it is — that describes some of what we aspire to be and do as individuals and community. What do you think? Ask us whatever you want. No secret handshakes or ceremonies here. We may not always have the answer to your question, but we’ll do our best to help. That’s our commitment to you.