NEW VISION FELLOWSHIP: Broken People Becoming Whole

Insights From Our Pastors

Grasping God's Word

In talking with our service planning team at New Vision about where to head in our teaching for the summer, it made great sense to put together a series that taught people how to study the Bible.  The how-to is often skipped in church with an assumption that somehow it becomes an innate trait when one is a Christian believer. Recognizing this to be a falsehood, we organized a 13-week series on "How to Grasp God's Word." Most pastors, churches, and planning teams approach the summer as a downtime, with the idea that we bring in the stuff that requires work, thought, and some stretching out of our comfort zones when we launch something new in the fall. Well, at New Vision, we don't take the approach of most churches. In fact, God could not be any clearer to us in his directive that we must, without hesitation, follow wherever he leads us - and that is exactly what we do...

Why We Worship

As a church body, we recently participated in a survey that measures quality characteristics that are used by God to build His church.  A main area of focus in this survey was to assess whether we are providing an “inspiring worship service.”  As I’ve examined the idea of “inspiring worship” more closely, I’ve had to ask myself this question: “Who is to be inspired by our worship?”  After giving this some thought and spending time in study, I am able to answer this question.  The one who is to be inspired by our worship is God.

Becoming Better Neighbors

At New Vision Fellowship we are exploring what it means to be Good Neighbors.  The core of this exploration is to become more and more like Christ, allowing the Holy Spirit to work in our lives, so that we reflect Jesus in our everyday lives through our actions, through our choices, through the way we use our resources and time, and through the way we treat others.  In order to reflect Jesus fairly to the world, we must practice the same kind of humility as Christ; a self-sacrificial humility.  We often consider the opposite of humility as pride, but Jesus didn’t come to earth and live among us in humility to save us from pride.  Jesus came in humility to save us from judgment.  In this case, it is not pride that is the opposite of humility; rather it is judgment that is the opposite of humility.

It is when we are sitting on the seat of judgment that we are the least like Christ.  It is when we give up the idea that we somehow sit above others or through our actions and words consider ourselves better than, that we are becoming closer to the person Jesus was and is.  Sometimes our knee-jerk reaction to the suggestion that we think of ourselves as better than others, or simply put that we are judgmental, is defensiveness and a lot of examples of ways we are not judging.  However, a part of the way we process and make decisions about things every day is through judgment. Within the first 5-10 seconds of meeting someone we have already made a judgment about that person.  How far this judgment is carried and how much impact it has on our choices and actions is where we need to focus. 

Being Active With Purpose

The decision to partner more specifically with two groups coincided to God’s call this fall on New Vision Fellowship to go deeper in our faith.  As we collectively agreed to grow, I expected this to be an individual experience that would make a difference in the whole of the church body.  However, the deeper growth is also becoming evident in the Actions to which God has called us.