Onward: Goal Number 1
On Sunday, August 28, the Deacons, Elders, and SLT of Elmhurst CRC got together from
8:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. (including a worship service) in order to seek God’s guidance for the ministry year ahead.* We left the room confident that the Holy Spirit had given us three audacious goals for the next nine months of congregational life. The first goal is simply this: that all those who identify as “All In” members of ECRC would attend Sunday worship in person 3-out-of-4 Sundays.
We talked about opportunities, hurdles, measurables, and our commitment to a vision of nurturing a spiritual community that can grow in three directions simultaneously, as pictured below.
This first goal is linked to the upward dimension of our vision for a vibrant, energetic life of worship. We felt convicted that the pandemic had broken many of our healthy spiritual habits, first among them being the rhythm of being together with God and one another, face to face. We were emboldened knowing that this is a priority to the heart of our God who says,
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength” (Mark 12:30-31).
And to Jesus himself, who promises that “wherever two or three are gathered together,” the presence of God will be there (Matthew 18:19-20).
We know that this goal is not for everybody. The target of being at Sunday morning worship at ECRC is for those who self-identify as an “All In Person.” What does that mean?! I like to say that an “All In Person” believes that God is at work in the world and at work in a local church like ours at Elmhurst CRC. An “All In Person” desires to be part of God’s local work and is willing to participate—even sacrifice—in order to participate in it and have a front-row seat for the good things that God is doing.
If this description of an All In person fits you and you are physically able, I invite you to embrace this goal and measure your (or your family’s) presence in worship. It’s for your personal adoption, challenge, and measurement.
We’re better together. And our ECRC leaders want more of us to be together more often.
God wants his daughters and sons to be together in Jesus’s name. The days of separation are long over. We have new work to do and goals to pursue. Onward!
- Pastor Gregg
*To the best of my knowledge, this is the first time a gathering like this has occurred.