Our Vision: LOVE
This coming Sunday we’ll be celebrating the 21 year anniversary of Calvary Chapel of Wilmington. It’s pretty incredible to think that CCW has been ministering the word of God in this city for twenty one years!
As we approach the event, I thought it would be good to remind ourselves of our reason for being here.
Proverbs 29:18 states “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Another translation reads, “If people can’t see what God is doing, they stumble all over themselves.”
In other words, it’s important to know WHO we are, WHERE we’re going, and WHY.
We could think of our vision to be like a road map that gives us directions to our destination. And when our vision comes from the word of God, then we know we’re heading in the right direction!
Our vision can be summed up in four words:
LOVE. WORD. WORSHIP. IMPACT.
We will love God and others, teach the word of God, worship God in spirit and truth, and impact our world for Jesus Christ. Today we’re going to talk about the first, LOVE
We will love God and others.
In Matthew 22 we read an account where someone asked Jesus, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” Jesus responded,
“‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets” – Matthew 22:37-40
Some people get hung up on this statement (it’s really a command), in that they think they have to feel something in order to love God (or others for that matter). But here’s the thing: Love isn’t a feeling, love is a statement of position.
See, love may start out as a feeling, but eventually feelings change, and then we’re left with a decision: Am I going to love this person? At that moment, love becomes a decision. I decide if I’m going to love this person.
But a funny thing happens when we decide to love someone; over time our feelings align with our decision. The more we get to know the person we’ve decided to love, the more we see past their faults, and the more we see their heart. The wisest man who ever lived observed:
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” – Proverbs 23:7
How does this translate into our vision as a church?
Simple: Part of our mission is to communicate to people who God is, and how much He loves them. We teach people about God, and as they learn Him, they decide to love God, and the inevitable result is that their feelings will align with their decision.
And a love for God will always translate into a love for others, because we recognize that God also loves them, so we should too. Over the course of our growing relationship with God, God gives us His heart for people, because:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16
Tomorrow we’ll look at the next part of our vision: WORD
We can change the world, one life at a time…