Friday, June 30, 2017

The Freedom of Dreams (An Independence Day Devotional)

Photo: The United States Marine Corps
The following was written for the White House Connection and appears in the July 4, 2017, edition of the publication.

By Kris Freeman
Revolution Church

Freedom comes with a sacrifice, and this was one as a young boy I was determined to make to achieve a dream. On Independence Day, I’m reminded of a commercial on which an iron worker heated a piece of metal that morphed into a uniformed United States Marine with his decorated sword.

“The few, the proud, The Marines.” I am certain you have seen the same commercial, and heard the slogan for the USMC which originated in 1977.

My grandfather was a veteran of the United States Army and served post war-time. My pastor served in the Vietnam War. I’ve lost a former ballplayer to a roadside IED, welcomed home best friends and kids from my church from training and deployment. I’ve baptized soldiers, airmen, sailors and Marines who have served in combat in Iraq, Afghanistan and been stationed in Germany, Portugal, Japan and the Philippines. I lost a friend to a traffic accident after he returned home from basic training, and I performed the wedding ceremony of a wife and her Marine decked in the same uniform I saw in that commercial. One of my best friends in life is a former Command Sergeant Major in the United States Army stationed at Pearl Harbor.

The military, its purpose and calling, the service men and women who fight and sacrifice for our freedom, and the patriotism to our country matter to me. But part of the reason it has long stood out for me is not just the love for our country, but the opportunity I craved so badly and never achieved.

I never told my parents I wanted to be a Marine. Partly, because I was bullied and meek and thought no one would believe my intentions were pure. I wanted to fight for my country. I was willing to die for my country. And as I entered high school, this took on a greater mission when I saw the United States Marine Drum and Bugle Corps. I eventually watched them live on July 4, in Washington D.C. on a school trip for FBLA.

Many of you know me as a pastor, announcer and a coach. What you may not know is that I was diagnosed with a benign bone tumor in my left leg in middle school, resulting in the loss of my ability to play high school contact sports (baseball would have been my likely path). A blow to the left leg would break my tibia or fibula in half. So reluctantly, I stayed with a path of music despite my pure intention to play sports and never step in the band room again.

I came from a musical family, so it was an easy transition. I marched six years with the high school band and by my sophomore year in high school, I was leading the trumpet section. I graduated as the winner of the Departmental Award for music at Portland High School. Yes, I’m a Blue Devil converted from a Panther but that’s another story for another time.

I had scholarship opportunities for music and turned them down because even if I couldn’t play baseball, I could coach, broadcast and write about it. And eventually I would, but there would be one hitch to the plan. I still dreamed of that USMC Drum and Bugle Corps, with a shined up horn, dress uniform and Fourth of July parade. I would have done what it took.

No one ever knew at age 17 I met with a recruiter, and the meeting took all of 30 seconds. “Do you have any pre-existing medical conditions?” He asked plainly and I replied, “yes, two years ago I was diagnosed with type one diabetes.” Game over. Dream over. Band horns down. And that’s the moment I decided I didn’t want music as a career.

Independence Day is a celebration of freedom, and what I have learned is that my choices to follow God’s path for my life seem well planned before I choose. What I feel I have missed is often replaced with fulfilling relationships with others who are my heroes.

They serve, they sacrifice and they save. Just as Jesus Christ did for me, and paid the ultimate price for the freedom from much more than foreign regime. He died so that I might have freedom from sin, and for that I am enlisted in a greater purpose to tell others about his grace, love, mercy and forgiveness.

But, as the fireworks explode this holiday into the sky, I can’t help but wonder what might have been and there is both a sense of envy and pride that dreams of marching forward. As band horns blare the sounds of the Fourth of July, I hoped one day I could play the song. I realize that decision could have cost my life, as the 1990s were filled with combat in the Middle East and Africa, among other places.

But I still remember that sun-soaked, 104-degree day in 1993 when my friends and I stood on the Fourth of July at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and toured Arlington National Cemetery. The freedom we possess is not about trumpets, or uniforms, pomp or circumstance. It’s about sacrifice. That day, there were no trumpets, no fanfare and no sounds. Just silence in honor of sacrifice.

And I am thankful for those who gave up their dreams so the rest of us could imagine them.

Happy Fourth of July, be safe, and serve someone today with significance.

Kris Freeman is the pastor of Revolution Church and the voice of the Blue Devils for White House High School football and basketball.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Jesus Forgives Sinners (07.02.17 Notes)

Jesus Forgives Sinners
#LoveLikeJesus Week 1
Pastor Kris Freeman
Sunday, July 2, 2017
Revolution Church

Scripture: Matthew 6:14-15 (NLT)

If you forgive those who sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins. (Matthew 6:14-15)

Jesus makes this statement during the Sermon on the Mount, at the close of teaching about THE LORD’S PRAYER. What does the Lord’s Prayer say about forgiveness?

And forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.

The story of Jesus is about FORGIVENESS and it is the HARDEST thing in the world to do.

Why did Jesus have to forgive?

  • Most of you have been wounded by someone in need of forgiveness. 
  • Abused you, took advantage of you, left you, lied about you, gossiped about you, betrayed you, cheated on you, hurt you, hit you, slandered you, hated you.
  • Some times its what we consider a BIG-TIME OFFENSE and other times it’s ongoing, small things which build up to a great hurt over time: bitterness, unresolved anger, grudge, picking/bullying, racism.

People did these same things to Jesus - but one difference between us and Jesus.

Jesus was always hurt by others, but he was never the OFFENDER.

You need to forgive others, and you also need to forgive YOURSELF.

Two others, both criminals, were led out to be executed with him. When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified - one on his right and one on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” And the soldiers gambled for his clothes by throwing dice. (Luke 23:32-34)

But I’m not Jesus, how can I learn to forgive like him?

1. Pray for those who have HURT you.

Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you. (Luke 6:28)

You have heard the law that says love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say love your enemies. Pray for those who persecute you. (Matthew 5:43-44)

The Romans worshipped revenge and punishment like a god. The Jews believed in an “eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” War criminals have tortured for pleasure. Regimes have destroyed for gain. Modern-day we want payback before we pray-it-back. We are a vengeful, ravaged culture with grudge in mind and fight at heart. BUT WAIT…

Jesus taught forgiveness because ATTITUDE precedes right actions. You have to get it right in you, before you can expect it in anyone else!

Quote this: My prayer for others may not change THEM, but it always changes ME.

2. Forgive as you have been FORGIVEN.

Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. (Colossians 3:13)

I don’t know about you - but Jesus has forgiven me. And sometimes I forget that!

What good is it doing you to hold on to the grudge?

“Unforgiveness is like drinking poison and hoping the other person will die” - Anne Lamont

Quote this: Forgiving someone won’t change the past, but it will change your future.

“To forgive is to set a prisoner free, and find out the prisoner was you.” - Lewis B. Smedes

When you forgive, five immediate things change in your life:

  1. Your love
  2. Your perspective
  3. Your time (no, I really mean this. Just listen up!)
  4. Your joy
  5. Your future


Monday, June 19, 2017

I Still Remember the Score...

By Kris Freeman
Revolution Church

You don't often have a lot of memories of younger days, especially not positive ones. I can recall my first spanking as a child. I remember throwing up on a blanket in the living room. I wasn't really fond of a head-on collision with the front porch rail, though I did triple in the winning run that night at six years old with stitches in my head. Perhaps pulling the bathroom rug and towel out from under my brother was a bad idea when he ended up with a busted chin.

One of my earliest memories was waking up in the hospital room after tonsil and adenoid surgery and hearing my pastor, Clayton Hall and his booming voice. I don't know what he said, but he brought me a tool set with a blue hammer and it was authentic with a wooden handle and iron tip.

So when I consider my memories of childhood, most of them center around trauma. Divorce of my parents as a young child was bitter. I can remember getting smacked in the mouth for talking too loud (and probably too much). My brother was kidnapped (and found) at White House City Park during a baseball game. We rushed home one night at age seven to beat a tornado from White House to Cottontown, only to have a tree collapse over the road before my dad got into the driveway of my grandfather's house.

Recalling a good memory takes effort, but I am thankful how adversity shapes me. But this is a good memory.

It was late October, 1982, and I was seven years old, playing in the floor of my Paw-Paw's house, just feet from the television. I remember the player tracking the ball, leaping to the fence and making the catch. I asked my dad and my Paw-Paw who the player was, and they answered Willie McGee of the St. Louis Cardinals.

His catch in that baby blue uniform helped propel the Cardinals to an eventual seven-game World Series victory over the Milwaukee Brewers. My recognition of McGee had deeper roots, however, as my first official baseball game was a Double-A contest in Nashville when a younger McGee played for the Sounds as a part of the New York Yankees organization. He was traded as a minor leaguer and joined another defensive superstar in St. Louis for the 1982 season.

Ozzie Smith and Willie McGee laid the foundation for a run of three World Series appearances in six years. It's pretty easy to develop a love for a team who played frequently on NBC's Game of the Week, hoisted trophies and were regular starters for the National League in the All-Star Game.

By age 10, I had thousands of baseball cards. The Cardinals were on top of the world, and the Mets were pond scum (yes, that's a thing. Google it for the story). I'm still mad at Don Dekinger for blowing the call that cost the Cardinals another world championship in 1985, when the team collapsed a 3-1 lead and lost to the Kansas City Royals.

I was a baseball player, a baseball fan, and had the rosters of every single Major League Baseball team memorized, and made edits by reading the transaction wire in the newspaper. So in 1986, my dad and step-mother loaded up our baby blue Buick with my brother and step-sister and headed to St. Louis for my first MLB game.

The trip almost never happened. We suffered car trouble and rode to St. Louis with no air conditioning. My dad made the best of a bad situation and few things I remember from the trip include my father taking my brother's Pound Puppy named Buster. He was brown and every Pound Puppy stuffed animal had a stub tail. Dad rolled up the tail in the window on Interstate 24 somewhere around Paducah and my brother screamed in the back seat until he took it down. Somewhere, Buster STILL has a notch in his tail. I guarantee it.

The hotel had a pull out bed, and I think that's where Dawn slept. We went to the Arch and rode that claustrophobic enclosure to the top. It was June 23, 1986, and we arrived at Busch Stadium on a Monday. Ace left-hander John Tudor was pitching, but the Cardinals were 29-37 coming off a three-game win streak at Philadelphia and already 17.5 games out of first place of the dominant and hated Mets.

I remember watching the Cardinals warm up in front of the dugout, gazing for that infamous "51" on the back of McGee's jersey. As the game started, a superstar backflipped his way to shortstop as he was introduced, and my dad would tell me the story of The Wizard being traded before the 1982 season from the San Diego Padres. That had significance, because it's the first time I remember my father telling me that he was born in San Diego and moved to Tennessee at a very young age and never went back.

Both my favorites would play a role in the win. The game went to extra innings, tied 1-1 after a brilliant pitching performance by Tudor. Barry Bonds struck out in the top of the 11th and Terry Pendleton led off the bottom of the 11th with a single. Andy Van Slyke popped up a bunt, but the Cardinals cycled back to the top of the lineup and Vince Coleman and Ozzie Smith drew walks to load the bases.

Second baseman Tommy Herr stepped to the plate and singled to left field off Pat Clements, scoring Pendleton. My first Major League game was a walk-off win for the Cardinals, 2-1.

We went Tuesday also, and the Cardinals won 5-2. Coleman stole two bases and McGee one against famed defensive Pirates catcher Tony Pena and that wicked stance. Ray Burris got the win, but most notably, I remember closer Todd Worrell coming into the ninth inning and playing both pitcher and right field, as manager Whitey Herzog let him pitch to Mike Diaz who singled. Worrell then moved to right field, and Ken Dayley struck out Barry Bonds with the bases loaded to end the game.

We headed home on Wednesday. Listening to the game on our way out, the Cardinals again won on an extra innings, walk-off with a 2-1 victory as Herr drove in Coleman off Clements. The Cardinals swept the series, but the season bookended between World Series appearances in 1985 and 1987 would end in a disappointing 79-82 mark and third place.

In 1996, I got to see the Cardinals play again. It was my first game in 10 years and I was now dating my future wife, Jennifer. The Cardinals were part of a six-team exhibition at Greer Stadium in Nashville against the Indians, and Mike Busby surrendered a home run to Albert Belle that has never landed. The Cardinals lost the game, but more importantly, Willie McGee had returned to the Cardinals after playing with the Giants and the A's. It was Ozzie Smith's final season. That night, Ozzie scored on a double by McGee and came up limping on his way into home plate.

Royce Clayton started the season at shortstop and it was Ozzie's final season for the Redbirds. But, I got to see them play together one final time, and was inches away from getting their autograph in a mob of people after the game, when a security guard pushed me off a curb and I was lost in the mass, holding the Beckett magazine with Ozzie's picture on it in my hands.

The Cardinals have been a major part of my life. I became a sports writer and a broadcaster. I wanted to be Ozzie Smith, Willie McGee or famed announcer Jack Buck. My dreams were attached to their success. And I guess the point of all this is that our lives are shaped by little things which develop key principles that we never forget.

So, two days after Father's Day, let me share this.

I am glad when the Buick nearly died, my dad didn't turn around. I am glad the Yankees traded McGee and the Padres traded Ozzie. I am glad Tommy Herr can hit. I am glad Barry Bonds didn't know how to hit home runs yet. I am sorry that Pat Clements had such a bad week.

And I am glad my dad took me to first baseball game. I still remember the score. Not because of the Cardinals, but because I couldn't stop telling him about it after the game.

You know, we saw Willie, Ozzie and John Tudor. But the most important thing is that Dad was there.

Happy Father's Day. Thanks for taking me out to the ballgame.

The Thoughts of a Man Leaning on a Fence...

This is an article originally published June 19, 2011, on Revolution Church's first trip to Jamaica by Pastor Kris Freeman.

Photo by Leslie Mitchell
"In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on my servants—men and women alike - and they will prophesy. And I will cause wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below." - Acts 2:17-19a

Far beyond me to explain how amazing my God is, I am rather going to admit I often have trouble understanding it myself. Staring at the tip of the sun, peeking over the horizon in Clarendon, Jamaica, this past Sunday night, there were so many things running through my head.

I looked at the ball of light slipping into darkness. I knew that was the same sun my wife and kids could see in White House, Tennessee. I thought of my church, which a little over nine months ago was starkly a vision and now God was changing lives of hundreds of people. I missed them; not so much the stuff, the songs, the magic of American worship experiences or the hospitality; I missed the people. I regretted that Brynn West couldn't smile at me during this moment, or I could not read Dana Bulla's connection card and see what God is going to answer for her next. It was a shame that Danielle Sanchez wasn't there to remind me how great of a volunteer she and her family are to our church, or Joe Smith to look at me with quiet eyes that tell a story he is about to turn loose for Jesus. It was the people I missed. Some of those people, I knew little about before the beginning of Revolution Church.

I leaned on the fence. I could hear the sounds of a sputtering engine across the street as two native Jamaican men worked under the hood. But my glance was caught, and as I saw him place his hands on his hips in a white tank top and reversed ball cap, I wondered what he could see in my eyes. Could he sense fear, or hurt? Could he see I had joy, or did he wonder why he wasn't important enough for me to exit the church yard and say hello to him. Forget for a moment that he might have been smoking marijuana and I was in another country. Could he see through the smoky haze to my heart and wonder, did I really know his plight; or would I simply board a plane five days later and return to normal?

I brushed an insect from the side of my face and heard the laughter of Whitney as the rest of the team gathered at the back of the church. Leslie snapped her camera, through the distance I heard it. I turned and she snapped again; the moment caught. I was caught; but the question is, what had me?

Was it a photo that distinguishes the incredible love I have for my church, or was it deeper? I was searching that horizon for a vision I found which may be bigger than my church can handle. Can I truly explain to them that we can plant a church in Jamaica for $20,000 and support them for one year - while all the time knowing that WE OURSELVES need a building and have no financial base to make such a purchase to house our own worship? Would it be too bold to cast that vision, knowing that some will shout the common cliche of "why should we send people to other countries when we have so many problems here" - and then realize I once uttered the very same statement behind my pastor's back?

Would it be possible to imagine that six days from then I would be sitting in the gym at H.B. Williams Elementary School, setting up for our church at home when misery would grip me and my spiritual eyes would see how much of American worship is superficial and selfish and I really had no desire to "produce" a service this weekend? But I will, and we did, and I placed signs in the pouring rain in hopes for Sunday to bring a new family to our church for the first time.

Goodness, that's a lot to think about in one minute. Vision not only transcends time, it also tends to stop it. In those moments, the mind races so fast it's impossible to remember everything He is sharing with you.

Church was supposed to begin in this building at 6 p.m. No one had arrived. Some on our team were beginning to ask and wonder if we were even going to stay. But God just continued to pound my spirit. I was restless, even inside the building where we posed for photos and creepily annoyed Sam Ramdial without his knowledge.

The crowd began to arrive and our team sat on different sides of the aisle on the front row. The second song started and I sat down, which is not customary in Jamaican worship. Amber turned to me and asked if I was ok. My response a bit telling of the truth. I said, "I don't know." Seconds later, I whispered, "something incredible is about to happen."

We sang, I preached. God delivered a powerful word and the worship was amazing. He may have radically changed the lives of three of our team members during the service, but it is impossible for me to share exactly what that means without their words.

What I know is, I saw it. I saw it on the horizon, under the hood of that card, bristling through the evening sky and skipping through Whitney's laughter. I saw it in Dana's prayers at home and Brynn's smile. I saw it in the sunset, and I also saw how the sun is going to rise. I saw it in a baby's face and sprinkled on the tile of a sparkling Jamaican church floor.

God changed me this moment. Perhaps the prophet Joel was speaking to me when he cast this vision of God through the scriptures. Maybe Peter was experiencing this wave when he defended the actions of his peers and disciples at Pentecost. It is likely, neither knew me or my name, but this scripture revealed itself in power to me at this moment.

I'd just like to be clear. When I step onto the stage tomorrow, it may be different than it ever has been before. God showed me a new Kris. He freed spiritual burdens and released a captive spirit I had held about missions since 1998. He showed me a new world which my eyes have never seen. He made me a new dad, a new pastor, a new friend.

An old man or young, I am blessed by the dream and vision God has placed in my heart. You may be tempted to use the word prophecy, but I'd like to remind you I am simply a man who should be speaking what God has given to me. A dreamer, a visionary, a missionary; it's just not fitting to label it when I serve a Savior who died for the sins of the whole world, and privileged me enough in his esteem to grace me with opportunity to share this news.

I attempted to write it down, my only prayer is you can see it. I pray you can see God. I pray you can see me. I pray you can see God in me.

I'm nothing but a servant and these are my thoughts.

Pardon me while I lean on the fence.

- Written June 18, 2011, by Pastor Kris Freeman of Revolution Church.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

God is Bigger Than Your World (06.11.17 Notes)

God is Bigger Than Your World
Outside the Box Church Week #2
Pastor Kris Freeman
Revolution Church
Sunday, June 11, 2017

Scripture: Ephesians 3:20-21 and 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)

Ephesians 3:20-21 (NLT)
20 Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. 21 Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.

1 Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)
That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

Last week, we discussed the magnificence and the intimacy of God, and how to make sure not to contain or limit his greatness in the church and how we structure our place in His kingdom.

In week two of #OutsideTheBox, we examine the DEPTH and the EXPANSE of the world God created.

Principles which have been questioned about the world God created:
1.     How big and expansive is the universe?
2.     Was the earth the only place where human form exists?
3.     Creation or evolution?
4.     Was the world flat?
5.     Why are there different races of people, and where did we all originate?

When we consider “big world” questions, there are two dangers that limit our answer to God’s call to a kingdom-minded mission:

·       Problem 1 – We are INTIMIDATED by what we cannot comprehend.
·       Problem 2 – We are LIMITED by what we cannot reach.

This was a BIBLICAL problem too!
1.     There was racism during Bible times caused by difference and lack of understanding
2.     There was classism in Bible times caused by demographics and poverty
3.     There was elitism in Bible times caused by education and power
4.     There was activism in Bible times caused by zealots and politics

The issues we face rarely CHANGE, but the question is, will the CHURCH change to meet the issues? Our methods are often a direct result of a limited MISSION.

The writer of both letters in today’s scriptures is the Apostle Paul. He was a MISSIONARY to the Gentiles (the non-Jews). When Jesus died, he established a new FAMILY and it is our job to make sure everyone can be a part of it. PEOPLE MATTER!!!

At Revolution Church, we want you to understand the Live.Love.Serve. mission and how it relates to expanding our outreach.

1.     We will not exclude a demographic based on differences.
2.     We will not be intimidated by those who have big questions about faith.
3.     We will not be trapped by short-sighted mission.
a.     Don’t fall into the pit of making the argument against international missions that is both prejudicial and hateful
b.    “Why should we go when there’s much to do here?”
4.     We will not be limited by impossible resources when we serve a possible God!

Bust the outreach myths!
·       I’m not called to that – but you are called to SOMETHING!
·       We’ve never done it that way before!
·       “Church people won’t like it”
·       I can’t afford it
·       I just need to work on me

Discipleship IS IMPORTANT.

You cannot lead others until you are committed to lead yourself. But you cannot lead yourself until you are truly submissive to love God and love others AS you love yourself!

1 Corinthians 3:6-8 (NLT)
I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Big God, Small Box (06.04.17 Notes)

Big God, Small Box
Outside the Box Church Week #1
Pastor Kris Freeman
Revolution Church
Sunday, June 4, 2017

Scripture: Isaiah 40:12-25 (NLT)

12 Who else has held the oceans in his hand? Who has measured off the heavens with his fingers? Who else knows the weight of the earth or has weighed the mountains and hills on a scale? 13 Who is able to advise the Spirit of the Lord? Who knows enough to give him advice or teach him? 14 Has the Lord ever needed anyone’s advice? Does he need instruction about what is good? Did someone teach him what is right or show him the path of justice? 15 
No, for all the nations of the world are but a drop in the bucket. They are nothing more than dust on the scales. He picks up the whole earth as though it were a grain of sand. 16 All the wood in Lebanon’s forests and all Lebanon’s animals would not be enough to make a burnt offering worthy of our God. 

17 The nations of the world are worth nothing to him. In his eyes they count for less than nothing—mere emptiness and froth. 18 To whom can you compare God? What image can you find to resemble him? 19 Can he be compared to an idol formed in a mold, overlaid with gold, and decorated with silver chains? 20 Or if people are too poor for that, they might at least choose wood that won’t decay and a skilled craftsman to carve an image that won’t fall down!

21 Haven’t you heard? Don’t you understand? Are you deaf to the words of God—
the words he gave before the world began? Are you so ignorant? 22 God sits above the circle of the earth. The people below seem like grasshoppers to him! He spreads out the heavens like a curtain and makes his tent from them. 23 He judges the great people of the world and brings them all to nothing. 24 They hardly get started, barely taking root, when he blows on them and they wither. The wind carries them off like chaff. 25 “To whom will you compare me? Who is my equal?” asks the Holy One.

The prophet Isaiah does a good job of explaining both the MAGNIFICENCE of God and the INTIMACY of God.

Why do we love to imagine the greatness of our God, but then LIMIT His significance when it comes to the application of our lives and churches? Here’s a few reasons:
  1. Legalism (adherence to manuals over mission)
  2. Tradition (adherence to customs over calling)
  3. Preference (adherence to wants over worship)
  4. Prejudice (adherence to entitlement over evangelism)

Revolution Church began with a mission to see the love of Christ turn lives around. To do so, we have busted the church PARADIGM - but there are some things we could LEARN from the past and do better and some things we should continue to champion!

Five core values of Revolution Church that are significant to our view of God, and God’s calling for our mission:
  1. We are Authentic
  2. We are Passionate
  3. We are Generous
  4. We are Servants
  5. We are Family

Every one of these values should emphasize that God is GREAT and people MATTER.

So let’s break down what God can do through us - and how you are important to this mission.

Champion the things outside of the box (things we do well):
  • Embrace our creativity 
  • Explore innovation - constantly find new ways to share the Gospel
  • Expand our partnerships (make our community better!)
  • Empower a hospitable and servant attitude
  • Expand our mission (next week, we will focus on outreach and missions)
  • Envision production that doesn’t get in the way of the praise

Challenge the system on things we could do to learn from the church of the past:
  • Discipleship (be better students of the Word and our spiritual development)
  • Giving (exponential generosity for the cause of the church)
  • Attendance (the average church family at Revolution Church attends approximately 50 percent of Sundays and less than 25 percent are in a group)
  • Care (bust the mold of employee-based pastoral care and embrace a Biblical value of community)
  • Leadership (a dedicated and committed approach to spiritual disciplines)
Spiritual growth should proceed NUMERICAL growth, or the foundation is built upon dangerous ground. But if you never evaluate your weakness inside the box, you will never expand OUTSIDE of it.

No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. - Romans 8:39 (NLT)

Let’s challenge the paradigm. Let’s go outside the box. But let’s remember who God is, and how He truly wants to work in us.