Three years ago, Grace Pointe embarked on an adventure that God had for us:
STABILIZE (2015) : During this year, we worked to stabilize our attendance, giving, campuses, and various ministry departments. Members worked on stabilizing their individual walks with God – no more rollercoaster faith! In January of 2015, we established the core values that would help us to stabilize (The Word Is the Filter, Love Shapes Character, Pray At All Times, Go To Grow). We also provided mentoring materials so that everyone could share their faith and grow in spiritual maturity (Becoming 1 & 2 – available in our Commons area). And God worked miracles! We didn’t just stabilize, we grew dramatically and then stabilized. Check out our 2015 “By the Numbers” summary report (this really only scratches the surface of what God did!):
SOLIDIFY (2016) : Now that we saw some stability and growth, we turned our focus towards solidification. This means that individually, we began to make commitments to develop systems in our lives that would help us in our spiritual growth and maturity. On a larger scale, we worked to create systems within the church that would make it easy to mentor, create, develop, and unleash Christ-followers from Grace Pointe to the world. God did some incredible things! We sent people all over the world, we threw a music festival for the city, we learned how to share our faith in a series called, “Sharing Your Faith,” and we worked hard to develop systems within our church that were reliable for the rapid growth of Grace Pointe. This has involved everything from web development to Life Group & Class development to Student development. It’s been extensive – and God has honored that hard work! Check out our 2016 “By the Numbers” summary report (this is by no means an extensive reflection of all God did – just some of the results and highlights):
STRETCH (2017-2018) : Think of our Stretch year as a metaphorical race. We began by deciding that we wanted to run and making space in our church for running, we got the running shoes, and the gear (Stabilize), and then we started training for our first race (Solidify). STRETCH is our first race. In it, we’re streamlining down to a race course and asking everyone at Grace Pointe to “run together.”
We move into a Stretch process that will be:
- Simple, but hard.
- Important to God’s kingdom and to our church’s journey
- Consistent with our stabilizing year (2015) and our solidifying year (2016)
- By August 2018, we will be tired but happy.
Orienting to God’s kind of Stretch
- We stretch in confidence and courage. (vv. 18, 20)
- We stretch together. (vv. 19)
- Our focus is Jesus, our direction is to the world. (vv.18-20)
- The stretch should be obvious and public. (vv. 19)
- The stretch requires taking the known to the unknown. (vv. 19-20)
For one year, everyone at Grace Pointe will love selflessly, connect socially, and give sacrificially.
Our Grace Pointe goals (all campuses) are:
- 15 new Life Groups or Classes
- 500 instances of sharing our faith with others
- 1500 people who have participated in a party initiated by someone in Grace Pointe
The following is how we’re going to do that. The Grace Pointe race for 2017-2018 is:
- everyone serves passionately for one year in one area of service
- everyone joins a Life Group or Class for one year
- we’re going to have a day where Grace Pointe will commit to giving one day’s wages above and beyond our tithe as an offering
In addition, we want to reach out, share faith, and be a voice of encouragement to others, so we will:
- have a website where you can write in how you shared your faith (isharedmyfaith.com)
- have a website where you can write in how someone else encouraged you (iwasencouraged.com)
- have a party central web resource so you can plan and throw your next party (within this Stretch section of the website)
That’s it. We’re going to simplify Grace Pointe for a year to facilitate our Stretch year. Along the way, our members will receive resources, prayer, and help. We’re going to worship and grow together as we follow Jesus wholeheartedly. By August 2018, we’ll be a little tired, but happy. Our first “race” will be complete!
In Scripture, there’s a parable of the talents (Matthew 25). Jesus reminds his servants that they’re to invest the talents they’ve been given. That involves risk and faith. The one man who simply puts his talent in a hole to give back to Jesus what he was given was deemed “wicked and lazy.” This is a “two talent” race. It’s our first. As we’re given and God faithfully grows our faithfulness (even as we are faithful, He is faithful), we’ll run larger races in the future. But for now, this is where Grace Pointe is at and this is the race we’re to run.
Run with us! All good things ahead.