Relationships. Community. They’re important to everyone. And we don’t think that’s just an accident. We think there is a good explanation.
God is a Community
The Bible says God is a community – a community of three persons (Father, Son and Spirit) in a relationship of joyful, self sacrificing love. Because we were made in God’s image, the desire for good, meaningful relationships and community is just part of our make up.
Most of us also know what it is to experience broken or hurtful relationships, feelings of isolation and loneliness. That’s not what God wants for us. So what’s wrong?
The Bible says that our biggest problem is a broken relationship with God. God wants us to live in a deep, loving, intimate relationship with him, a relationship of loving, trusting obedience – trust that living life his way will be good and whole. Instead we’ve decided to do things our way. Somehow we imagine that doing it God’s way means missing out. What we discover is just the opposite. Once that relationship with God has problems, all our other relationships – with other people, with the creation – start to break down too.
The good news is that God – even though we were the ones who walked away from him – acted to restore the relationship. God actually came among us in Jesus. And somehow – by his life, death and resurrection, Jesus made possible a restored relationship with God. We’re invited to turn around from doing life our way, and instead start doing it God’s way again. We’re invited to say to God – who we know best in Jesus – “You’re in charge, you’re Lord.” Once we do that, we slowly begin to experience a new, joyful, purposeful relationship with God. And we also begin to work on restoring relationships with other people and the whole creation.
First Baptist Church is about relationships, community – first with God, then with other people and the whole creation. Many of us have found spiritually nurturing, caring relationships with other people here, relationships which enhance life and make it better!
Sorting it out — Together
We haven’t got it all sorted out and we’re far from perfect! We know that. Often enough what we say and what we do don’t match up. That’s exactly why we’re here – because we aren’t anywhere near perfect. We need each other to figure out all that it means actually to live out that renewed relationship with God, other people and the creation.
We’re here because we’ve found First Baptist is a place to belong as we do that. Come get to know us. You might discover the same thing – that this really is a place to belong.
Edited from original by Dr. Mark McKim
by Collin Carbno, Past Chair of Deacons,
and Joel Russell-MacLean, lead pastor