church plant

Vision 101: what is faith?

People often ask what we are about. Our go to answer is : Restore Church exists to foster Authentic Faith, Diverse Community, and Radical Generosity.
We sum it up: believe connect serve.

Today I'd like to discuss Authentic Faith. What is faith? Why is authenticity emphasized at Restore? 

We believe that everything starts with faith around here. That's why it's the first part of our vision. We don't gather because we all hold the same political views, have similar backgrounds or even like the same type of music. We gather because we have faith in common. In Hebrews 11 Faith is defined as the essence of what we hope for, but cannot see. I'm never going to try to prove God to you. That's the opposite of faith. I'd rather challenge you to believe in what we can't see. 

Recently we discussed this in greater detail at Restore. Here's a clip of the service.

Our goal is for everyone to believe and have a deep personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Belief (according to Hebrews 11) deals with future and past. The hope it refers to is our longing for an eternity in a place free of war, pain, death, sin, etc. Every human has this longing. We long for a different world. That's a desire placed inside us by our Creator. We long to be where He is.

Faith also deals with the past. The unseen mentioned in the passage emphasizes that the individuals reading that passage had never seen Jesus. They came around years after His death, burial and resurrection. We also can't see Jesus, but that's where faith comes in. Faith changes everything. That's why everything starts with faith around here.

Let me close by saying this: faith isn't the absence of doubt! Some of Jesus early followers struggled with doubt. Doubt is natural. This is where we get authentic and honest with one another. As a pastor I must confess that my faith isn't always the faith to move mountains. I struggle with doubt in different areas often. I'm not saying I question God, heaven or anything major. I do however struggle with depending on Him. I have doubts arise when I see people hurting or in need. We must get used to dealing with doubt without letting it turn into unbelief. Unbelief is the rejection of faith, Jesus, everything. Doubt can lead to unbelief, or it can lead to deeper faith. It depends on what you do with your doubt. Will you deal with it by asking questions, seeking out community, digging deeper into what is truth and what isn't, or will you just hope it goes away? I hope you'll deal with it. let me know if we can help in any way.



Pastor Marc

Three challenges in building a team

In our context team building is crucial, but it's also voluntary. We aren't building a team of staff members or employees. We're asking people to join us in planting a church. However, many of the challenges we're facing repeat themselves in any context of team building.

Challenge 1 getting everyone behind the vision

You get the vision. Does your team? It took us a few months to get our team behind the vision. I once heard it said, "when you're tired of stating the vision, your team is just about to get it." This is so true. Often people have their own vision of your business, goals, team or church. As leaders we have to spend time crafting and casting the vision we want people to catch.

Challenge 2 putting the right people in the right places

Our church plant team consists of 30 young adults. There's no shortage of passion and excitement. Before we launch in 2016, we have to get the right people in the right places. Some are gifted in the arts (music, drama, design). Others are just natural conversationalists. We all have ideas about who goes where, but it's often surprising who ends up being the best fit for different roles. Here's a tip I learned early: Give away roles, not titles. Once someone has a title like "project manager" or "service coordinator" they assume that's their position forever. You'll be kicking yourself when someone more gifted and inclined to that position shows up 6-18 months into the launch of your business, church or organization. Here's how I phrase it: "________ will serve as our service project coordinator starting out. We are so thankful for _______'s willingness to serve in this capacity during this season."

Challenge 3 maintaining momentum and vision

Everyone is excited about launching. The weeks following are key to a successful launch. Regardless of what you're launching, if you can't maintain momentum and vision after the excitement wears off, you're in trouble. In our context (church planting), we focus on momentum builders throughout the year. For instance we push big events or service projects. Find something for people to get excited about and space them throughout the year. Make sure those events fall in line with your vision. Momentum is hard to get and easy to lose, but vision can help you decide which kind of momentum you want. Busyness for busy's sake isn't momentum. 


Hey if you're a Christian, consider praying for us as we launch a new church in the next 100 days.