DEFINE THE RELATIONSHIP
A mom in the church told me a story about her adult daughter’s relational confusion. Daughter called mom, as she routinely does, and dropped the line, “I think I have a boyfriend.” Mom was a bit confused: how do you not know if you have a boyfriend? The daughter explained that she and this guy never hang out with anyone else. In fact, they are together so much that all her friends assume he’s her boyfriend. But for the daughter, the relationship was in limbo. They had never talked about their hopes, dreams and expectations of the relationship.
People in the church often live in the same limbo. We don’t know what to think of about our relationships with one another. Is it right to have expectations? What does it mean to have hopes and dreams for the relationships within the church? How do we relate to the church as a whole and how should it relate to us?
Those are important questions that often get overlooked. This summer, we will look at them and have the “Define the Relationship” conversation. In week one we saw where the church comes from: it is built by Jesus on the foundation of the gospel. We are following that by examining the images the New Testament uses for the church: family, body, temple, a people, and a flock. Then we will look at five vital functions of the church.
We can capture the entire series in one sentence (but it’s a long sentence):
The church is the family of believers who are united, set apart and belong to Jesus, for the purpose of worshipping God, and declaring the gospel verbally, through its practices, and through the lives of its people.
That is who we are and what we do.
To finish the story…
The mom assured her daughter that she’s a smart girl and would figure it out. So that night the smart girl asked the guy a smart question: How would you feel if we went out with other people? Relationship Defined: She had a boyfriend.
FBC’s Ministry Direction
When income is below expenses, it is tempting to become manipulative. That is not biblical. Here’s what Paul says in 2 Corinthians 9:6-9, where he calls the Corinthian church to collect a generous offering for the needs of churches and believers who are struggling financially…
6 The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 9 As it is written, “He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.”
We must never ask people to give who are reluctant to do so or feel under compulsion. People should give cheerfully in light of God’s grace at work in their lives. The standard for giving is less about an amount we should give then it is about the attitude with which we give.
If the amount we receive is what the people of FBC can give in keeping with 2 Corinthians, then it falls to the church to ask how to use those resources well. Please join FBC in prayer as we seek wisdom for how the Lord is leading us to minister. Look for information below about a night of prayer and worship on July 14.