Who We Are
“Not To Be Served, But To Serve”
“For Even The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45)
This statement is our congregational “watchword.” A watchword is a short reminder and a promise from scripture about who God is and who he has called his people to be.
Some of Jesus’s disciples once asked him for a place of honor in the Kingdom of God. Jesus reminded them that even he came to serve, not to be served. When God shows us who he is in Jesus, he comes as a servant. And Jesus reigns as King in a totally unexpected way: in giving up his life.
We believe serving God is perfect freedom. There is a prayer often attributed to Augustine of Hippo. The prayer cries out to “God, Whom to know is to live, Whom to serve is to reign, and Whom to praise is the health and joy of the soul…”
Because of Jesus, service doesn’t need to be a drudgery. Knowing God is good enough, the blessings of God’s Kingdom are abundant enough, and the life that Christ brings is full enough, that we are always free to share that life in serving others above ourselves.
We are free to give to — and receive from— one another. Serving and praising God together, we enjoy the life and rest that God alone gives.
This watchword, “Not To Be Served, But to Serve,” reminds us two precious things:
Who God is and what Christ has done for us.
Who God calls us to be and what we may do for others.
Our Church Coordination Team (CCT) has set certain goals for our church this season, in pursuit of following the calling God has given us as a congregation in different areas of our life together.
Worshiping as the Body of Christ
“He must increase. I must decrease.”
Each generation will be involved in our times of worship together, recognizing the body of Christ spans ages, cultures, and ethnicities. We will seek to put to death our preferences for the sake of honoring Christ and encouraging the faith of others.
We are a Spirit-led people gathered to join Christ's presence in our community.
“Help me understand the meaning of your commandments, and I will meditate on your wonderful deeds.”
Every member cultivates a desire for spiritual growth by embracing spiritual curiosity and asking tough questions about faith and life. Both individually and in groups, members will meditate on scriptures, track the overall themes and narrative of the Bible, and wrestle with age-appropriate theological resources. Together, we will strive to articulate God’s answers for living faithfully in the modern world.
Inviting to Church & To Know Christ
“Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
Each member will invite at least one friend or neighbor to church this year, sharing their faith, their hospitality, and their compassionate care for their neighbors so that others might come to know the love of God revealed in Christ Jesus.
Acts of Mercy
Gifts For Service
“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.”
(1 Peter 4:10)
Every member recognizes at least one gift, talent, or privilege that they have been graciously given by God. Members of all ages will use that gift to serve their neighbors at least once per month in their life, including through FBCM’s various outreach opportunities.
Our commitment to one another is drawn from scripture. And it’s this:
We pledge ourselves to be the family of God for you in this place:
Bearing your burdens, as you bear ours.
Encouraging you in the faith, as we are encouraged by you.
(1 Thess. 5:11)
Delighting in the Lord’s ways
(Ps. 86:11-13; Ps. 37:3-6)
Offering our lives as a living sacrifice: Holy & Pleasing to God.
When a member joins, we say this pledge together as a church.
The life of faith isn't meant to be lived alone. Before he was crucified, Christ's prayer to the Father was that his disciples, and all believers after them, would be one — as he and the Father are one.
At the same time, that unity comes with wonderful God-given differences. We’re not clones who all think, look, or act exactly alike! That is what the Apostle Paul means when he talks about the church as the body of Christ, with many different parts and many different gifts.
A Note From Our Pastors
Pastors Kendall & Jonathan
If you’re looking not only for a place to attend a service, but for a community of faith, we would love to welcome you to First Baptist. And, if you’re unsure what you believe (or even if you consider yourself a great skeptic!), but are wondering if there may be something more out there, we’d love for you to join us for worship too! After all, Jesus did not say to his first followers: “Figure it all out, and then get back to me.” He said to them, “Come and see” (John 1:39). Even so, we know people curious about a church wonder what a particular church, including its pastors, “are all about.” We love the Good News – the Gospel – that Christ came and lived a life as it was meant to be lived: in full obedience to the Father. And in doing that, all the way to the cross, he destroyed our death by dying. He gave us new life in rising by the power of the Holy Spirit. He Ascended to heaven, and he will come again in glory to make all that is wrong right. That’s life-changing, and truly good, news. It’s news good enough to set all of us free. We’re all about the church. This church is made up of people who are all imperfect, all of us with our own struggles, all of us failing, falling into our old selfish ways, and getting up again only by God’s grace. And those same people are also filled by God’s own Spirit, have a sincere desire to be “good news” people, and to serve one another as we grow in our love of Christ together. We’re honored to serve as Co-Pastors here. And it’s not only because First Baptist decided to do something a little unusual in calling a married couple to be Co-Pastors — both of us preaching the word and shepherding God’s people in this community. We love to serve here because we love being part of this Spirit-led people gathered to join Christ's presence in our community. Finally, we would love for you to join us this Sunday, or anytime we’re gathered to encounter the same Christ who was, and is, and will come again – as we meet him in worship, the word, and the Lord’s table. “Come and see!” Pastors Kendall and Jonathan