with a passion to worship God,
who care for one another
and bring God’s love into a broken world”
Today I am going to build upon the message that I’ve shared two weeks ago on theme of ‘community’. And in that message we’ve been particularly looking at the question what it means to ‘belong’ to a local community of followers of Jesus, like we are as Vineyard Groningen. Part of this message was Paul’s call to ‘to be devoted to one another in brotherly love’. This devotion can be put in practice in many different ways, and two of them are to ‘share with God’s people in need and practice hospitality’ (Rom. 12:13).
Today we’re going to take up the theme of ‘community’. A couple of weeks ago, Ernst did a great job preaching on this theme as well. One of the things I remember of his message is ‘grace’. We cannot function as a community if there is no grace!
Our vision statement on community reads: Community [IN]: Vineyard Groningen is proud to be a multi-ethnic community. We celebrate diversity, care for one another and show compassion to the world…’ This is really our desire and we believe God’s will for our church in terms of community. And yet, experience tells me that it isn’t so easy to be a place where diversity is celebrated, people care for one another and compassion is demonstrated!
We've had the privilege of having Jan Bernard Struik in our midst. Jan Bernard is pastoring the Vineyard in Utrecht and National Leader of the Vineyard Benelux. The message is on Acts 28 and taking Paul’s example of demonstrating hospitality and the Kingdom into practical lessons for our daily lives.
Our vision statement begins with ‘we want to build a community of disciples…’. Discipleship to us is the framework that defines everything else in our community. 2 weeks ago I spoke about ‘the heart of discipleship’. But in this message I talked about the ‘what’ question. What is discipleship about?
We’re officially kicking off our new season today and we do so with a Cultural Celebration! Celebrating our Multi-Ethnic nature as Vineyard Groningen and the Cultural diversity that comes with it. In that sense, the Cultural celebration of today is a foretaste of what is envisioned by the apostle John in Rev. 7:9 where we read: "… I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb."