Vision Sunday 2019.

At our Vision Sunday in March 2019 the church leaders laid out how they see the development and growth of the church during this year.

Our annual theme for this year, ‘UPON THIS ROCK’ is based upon verses from Matthew 16:17 -19

‘Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

….. “and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.  I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” ‘

We are all on personal journeys and there are both challenges and encouragements in life.  As Christians we are not alone, we have Jesus and church.  During this year we want to see spiritual growth in each individual.  We may not be all starting at the same point in our Christian journeys but we recognise that we are all going in the same direction.

You can listen to the Vision Sunday 2019 talk online.

To Plant Church in People.

Church is made up of people and not the bricks and mortar.  Our challenge for 2019 is how we can plant church in people?

We may attend church but are we ‘church’?

As a growing church it is important that individuals grow in their personal faith and journey through life as a Christian.  We want to be a church were people want to come on a weekly basis, a place where you don’t want to miss out, a church of vibrant, spirit filled worship, Christian teaching, support and friendship.  A church where you can feel a part, a living part.

We see four areas for planting church in people.

Water.

Isaiah 55:1-3 says  “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.  Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?  Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.  Give ear and come to me; listen, that you may live.”

To grow plants it is important that they are regularly watered and tended.  Left to their own devices they may not survive the weather and conditions.  The same can be said of us as Christians.

We recognise the importance of meeting together for friendship,  worship and teaching.  We are not meant to be loners as God encourages us to meet together regularly.  We can suggest it, but only as individuals can we do it.

The challenge as a church is to provide the right atmosphere where we want to be, where we feel loved and wanted.   This is not just a challenge to the leadership, but to each of us.  We encourage people to come on a regular basis to get the most from church.

Sunday mornings are our key meetings and we have plannned a number of teaching series based around the verse – “on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.  I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”

We want all us to be there and not miss a thing!

Grow.

In 2 Peter 3:18 it says  ‘Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.’

Church is about relationships, relationship with God and relationships with one another.  To get the most out of Church it is not just about Sundays, there are other events and meetings we can join in with to help us grow and make friendships, such as, Life Groups and Social Events.

There are lots of ways to get involved in the life of the church at Harefield, ministries that will help us to connect with others.  Getting involved in mid-week activities or volunteering our time is a great way to make connections and be an active part of Harefield.

Produce.

It says in John 15: 7-8 – (Jesus said) “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”  Our fruit shows the glory of God -wow!

Having continual water and food we would expect to see growth in indiviauls and the evidence of this is ‘fruit’.  In the Bible in Galatians 5:22-23 it talks about the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’, character changing effects.

As we become open to God we should see a willingness to get involved.  This helps expand the work of the church with more resources using our abilties, fruit and gifts.

Sow.

In Matthew 28:19-20 Jesus said “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,and teaching them to obey everything  I have commanded you.  And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

As we grow in our relationship with God, we realise the importance of God in our lives.  Our thoughts can now turn to the idea of sharing our faith with others.  How can we witness in the community and to our family and friends?  Often the best witness is the changes in our lives due to God, people will notice and ask the ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions.  We can start to sow seeds!

This year we will be running Alpha courses.  Consider inviting your friends and family.

2019 – Be encouraged.

When we get to 31 December 2019 we want you to be able to look back and see how far you have travelled and grown as a Christian.

We want to be able to look back and see how much the church has grown.

Personal and corporate growth at Harefield Church during this year is our vision for 2019.

Only we can decide if we want to grow and allow God to change our lifes.

It says in Psalm 92:12-14  ‘The righteous will flourish like a palm tree, they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;  planted in the house of the Lord, they will flourish in the courts of our God.  They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green.’  What an encouragement to us all.

Church is for everyone, so let’s start planting church in us and those around us this year.

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