Christmas is upon us! Wow that was fast. We are very excited about our Christmas sermon series and the New Year to follow. We really are!
On this journey of merging churches, the first year is the toughest. Everything we read and studied hinted that surviving the first year would be the most crucial. Well, we are close.
We will look back over 2017 and debrief. We will ask questions big and small. We will ponder the thought, "What we were thinking?" We will be pleased with unforeseen blessings. We will ask our God what He was up to, and we will praise Him for doing things we could not have believed. As you do with your personal life, you will assess, question, recalibrate and, yes, move forward.
We serve a mighty God. We want to be sure to follow Him wherever He may lead.
One thing that I know as I look back on 2017 is that God helped us to solidify what Cedars is really about. As a brand new church we wanted to establish our unique DNA. We truly wanted to know where Cedars is going.
One thing I know happened in 2017 is that we put our flag in the ground about Cedars three missional tenets: Cedars is an Equipping Church committed to each member’s Inner Circle and encouraging all who will to become an integral part of a Home Church!
Cedars should be about these three things. Our key verse is Ephesians 4:12. Accordingly, we are “equipping the saints for works of ministry”. We are encouraging every believer to reach out to his/her Inner Circle and we will give opportunities for people to reach their world through Home church (whether that means we are in a home church or supporting them as a church body).
We have not changed our plan. We have not been shaken from our pursuit of these things. As a matter of fact, in the days to come, you will see us going even farther down this road. You will see it as we preach, teach and share this vision.
Rooted has been such a great foundation to all of this. We have been blessed to see the results of what this experience has meant to those who were group members.
In the year to come, we will question, pivot, try harder, pray more and, yes, follow our God with diligence. However, I want you to know that we are still focused as a leadership and a staff on the very thing God called us to do when we merged a year ago: Equip, Inner Circle and Home Church!
Merry Christmas and may the entire Cedars family have a very Happy New Year!
Jeff Harris (Teaching and Training Pastor)