We recently had our 2023 Vision Night where we looked back with appreciation for all God has done in 2022 and looked forward in anticipation of what God is going to do in 2023. In doing that, we revealed what our focus will be as a church for the next year. This past year, we were focusing on becoming a healthy church and having our hearts revived for the Lord and His work. Next year, our focus is going to be on the Kingdom of God.
We want to start thinking beyond our own four walls and our own church and begin to focus on the Kingdom of God as a whole. This means we’re shifting our focus from inward to outward, committing ourselves to love and serve people as Jesus did. We want to direct our attention and energy to building and expanding the Kingdom of God as Jesus did. Well, how did Jesus do that? Through disciple-making. Our focus phrase for next year is
This theme comes directly from our focus verses for 2023:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”–Matthew 28:19-20
We want to ask 3 questions of our efforts as a church. 1) How are we going? In other words, what’s our involvement locally, nationally, and internationally? 2) How are we making? That is, what’s our strategy for not just making converts but actually making disciples of Jesus? 3) How are we teaching? And when we think about teaching, we need to think in terms of access and opportunity. How are we providing others with access to God’s Word and providing them with opportunities to grow in their knowledge of the Scriptures and the faith? Are we actively providing people with access to God’s Word and taking advantage of opportunities to interact with the Scripture and the gospel message?
This focus will direct not only our activities and missions involvement as a church but also our teaching and preaching. We will spend all of 2023 preaching and teaching about the Kingdom of God.
Our first and main Sunday morning sermon series will be Matthew: The King and His Kingdom
Matthew, maybe more so than any of the other Gospel writers, focuses on presenting Jesus as the King of the Kingdom of God and shows us what the Kingdom is and how to be citizens of the Kingdom.
Over summer we will take a break from Matthew to study what the Old Testament teaches about the Kingdom of God. This series will be called Kingdom Messengers: The Minor Prophets.
Each Sunday during this series we will be in a different book of the minor prophets to see what each one has to say about the Kingdom of God.
After the summer series, we will be back in Matthew for a few months before taking one final break. The final sunday morning series will be Mission Improbable: Imperfect People With a Perfect Purpose.
In this series, we will see how God uses the most unlikely people to accomplish His perfect purposes. It will encourage us to believe that if God could use them, then He can certainly use us.
Since we’re about to finish our 2-year journey through the book of Genesis, we need a new Wednesday evening series. So we’re going from the first book of the Bible to the last. Starting in January we will begin our new sermon series called Revelation: The Triumph of the Lamb.
Our focus for next year is going to be evident not only in our sermon series, but also in our missions activities as a church. We’re currently developing new mission strategies for next year to make us a more effective church. We will be presenting more information about those new strategies as soon as they are finalized.
We’re looking forward to next year and all that God is going to do in our midst. We’re going to be a church on the move. We’re going to focus on going, making, and teaching. We’re going to love and serve others the way Jesus did. We’re going to help people embrace the fullness of the faith. God wants more for people. So do we.