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

What are Launch team members committing to?

When someone asks what it takes to be a launch team member, my reply is simple: "gimme 5!"

I'm not just asking for a high five, though those are always welcome on teams. We're asking for 5 distinct commitments from a team member.

1. Commit to be there when we gather. This is a big one. Everybody wants to be part of a church, but showing up seems to be hard in 2015. We are asking for faithful team members who we can depend on. When guests show up, but nobody is there to greet them, it gets awkward quick.

2. Commit to serious prayer for the church plant. Literally every challenge we've faced thus far has been overcome through prayer. This is our secret weapon. If we are going to be team members, we need to be praying together. 

3. Commit to being an outspoken advocate/bringer. The best way to reach people is by telling them/inviting them. We need individuals who will commit to bringing people. 

4. Commit to generosity. Oh shoot, is he talking about money???? We hope to be the most generous church in our community. That's only possible if we are generous as individuals. There's no required amount or sliding scale to join the team (we aren't into pyramid schemes). We ask the team to lead the way in generosity.

5. Commit to serving. Some will serve in our guests services area. Others will help the parking lot team. Maybe your gifted to serve in the area of music, kids' checkin, hospitality, etc. We don't ask anyone to serve outside their comfort level, but we do ask for team members to lead by example and serve regularly somewhere. The good news is our nursery is fully staffed by professionals, so you don't have to worry about dirty diapers.