Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Membership Covenant for The Spring

Membership Covenant for
The Spring: the church with a heart for home




MISSION

The Spring's mission is to impact the entire world for Jesus Christ - one person at a time. We are doing this by focusing on the four pillars of the early church - an emphasis on learning and sharing the Word of God, a commitment to intentional fellowship with other believers, a belief in the power and practice of continual prayer, and the desire to worship God - individually and as a church.

We desire to build a church that will strengthen families as the primary catalyst for spiritual growth, healthy relationships, and societal stability. To raise disciple-making families who will impact people and the culture for Christ.

VISION

We are deeply committed to the basics of a biblical church – Bible preaching-teaching, worship, prayer, and fellowship (Acts 2:42). We believe this church is a people through whom the Lord will be honored, He will give His glory, and He will grant peace. And we are deeply committed to fostering the experience of God through small group fellowships of people learning to love, worship, trust, and submit to the Lord and in turn love, serve, trust, and submit to each other. This essence of Christian community is attractive and contagious. The early church’s testimony revealed that as they gave themselves continually to the four pillars of Acts 2:42, the result was church health and church growth. A unified body and effective evangelism and disciple-making.

The Shema (Deuteronomy 6:4-5) is considered by the Jews to be the foundational instruction in the Torah – the first five books of the Old Testament. Jesus later used the Shema to illustrate life’s most important commandment – loving the Lord (Mark 12:28-29). The context of the Shema – the laboratory for producing persons who love the Lord with all of their heart, soul, and might - is not the church but the home. Parents are instructed in this chapter what to do in order to produce such type of children. Parents and other extended adult family members are to be the primary catalysts for spiritual growth in the lives of children.

The family is the bedrock of society. The family was made before any other institution. The family was created before the community of faith – actually the family is the primary faith community! Society will be strong when families are strong. Churches will be strong when families are strong. Our church needs to organize in order to strengthen families.

The church is a family. For those who do not have relatives nearby, the church becomes that body. No one person is the head. Christ is the head. We are all various members. Each comes with a different gift or talent. With strengths and weaknesses. The eye will see things the ear cannot. The ear will hear things the foot cannot. The foot can walk places the hand cannot. And the hand will pick up things the eye cannot. However, the eyes sees for the whole body. The ear hears for the whole body. The foot walks for the whole body. The hand touches for the whole body. That is why each member needs the others, and no one can say to another member, I have no need of you. Thus, we learn to practice the “one-another’s” of Scripture together – in the context of the church family.

COVENANT

A covenant is "a compact or agreement between two parties binding them mutually to undertakings on each other’s behalf (Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, Walter Elwell, ed.).

In the Bible sometimes stones were placed as spiritual markers, reminding people of a significant act of God, commitment, or experience. At The Spring, we have seven stones to remember signifying our core values. Understanding and believing The Spring’s vision and mission, we covenant together under the following core values . . .

Character - Character matters. In big things and small things we seek to please the Lord.

• We make it our aim to please the Lord.
• I understand that I always represent Christ and this church.
• I will seek to live a godly life and will be accountable for any serious or ongoing sinful patterns in my life.
• I have personally and consciously repented of my sins, believed in and received Jesus Christ into my life, and expressed this relationship to trust and follow Jesus in water baptism by immersion.
• I am making a conscious and ongoing commitment to support the mission and values of The Spring – and to signify by signing the membership covenant.



Prayer - We will be people of prayer.

• I will pray to God daily and seek to grow in a lifestyle of prayer.
• I will pray for myself, my family, my church, and my pastor(s).
• I will pray for the church’s growth in spirit, unity, health, and numbers.
• I will pray about matters relating to our church and will seek to help the church know the Lord’s mind and will in these matters.



God’s Word - The Bible is our standard and we will do our best to obey its instructions and lives by its principles.

• We seek to place ourselves under the authority of the Word of God, submitting to its truth and allowing the Bible to shape our lives.
• We value systematic Bible teaching and believe that anointed, verse by verse (expositional) preaching and teaching is the most important method in a healthy church.
• We agree with the theological statement of the Southern Baptist Convention, the Baptist Faith and Message, which was adopted in the year 2000, and we submit to its stance.


Fellowship - We will relate to one another in a way that honors Christ.

• We will focus on love as Jesus’ central command.
• We will refuse to gossip or speak ill of each other – or to even listen to such things.
• We will seek reconciliation with other members when conflict or interpersonal problems arise – going to them in a timely manner.
• We will regularly participate in a small group with other believers. We will contact someone in our small group when we need help or are in difficulty.
• We will protect the unity of our church, praying for and supporting her pastor(s) and leaders.


Worship - Loving the Lord Jesus is our aim, and we seek to stay close to Him, listening to Him and ministering to Him.

• By personally trusting and following Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
• By developing a growing personal relationship with Christ through prayer, Scripture intake, and obedience.
• By regularly joining with God’s people in worship.
• By regularly giving back to God through my church a portion of my financial blessings.
• By discovering my spiritual gifts and using them with my natural abilities, interests, and resources to edify my church, her people, and God’s kingdom.


Disciple-Making - Disciple-making will be the goal of the organization.

• I understand that a disciple is one who is marked by these four qualities: abiding in God’s Word, habitual obedience, Spirit-control, and fruit-bearing.
• I will engage in processes, relationships, and activities that help me grow as a maturing disciple of Jesus Christ.
• I will work to help my church fulfill the Great Commission – evangelism and disciple-making.
• I will pray and look for opportunities to invite other people to my church and to my Savior.


Family-Equipping - We will focus on strengthening the family as the primary context for discipleship and basic building block of society.

• I believe that parents and other extended family members are to be the primary spiritual directors and influencers in the lives of children.
• I will seek to do my best to positively influence my family for the Lord.
• I will build relationships in my church and help strengthen other families.
• My church is a family, and I will seek to relate to my church family in a way that produces love, unity, and the building up of each other.

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