“My office, then, is in the church. That is where I do what I do, and what I do makes me different from those among whom I serve. But my vocation is to be God’s person in the world, and that makes me the same as those among whom I serve. What we have in common is our baptism, that turning point in each one of our lives when we were received into the household of God and the promise was made to confess the faith in Christ crucified, live his resurrection, and share in his eternal priesthood. That last part is crucial. Our baptisms are our ordinations, the moments at which we are set apart as God’s people to share Christ’s ministry, whether or not we ever wear clergy robes.”
-Barbara Brown Taylor, The Preaching Life
Have you noticed? We baptize a lot of babies at Grace! In those baptismal covenants, we talk about God’s call on each child’s life as they are named and claimed by their parents and by the church. What does that mean? When we speak of having a “call”, we most often think only of clergy. Certainly each person serving as pastor has a unique call story. We learn from those stories how many different ways God works in people’s lives.
The greater challenge is for us to understand and affirm that God’s call isn’t only for the few, but for each person who puts their life in God’s Spirit by committing to live in discipleship through Jesus Christ. Through this commitment we offer ourselves with all our strengths and weaknesses, talents and gifts, for God’s purposes and vision in the world. At Grace, our belief in God’s vision is expansive as we seek to be a community: Loving God, Living like Jesus, and Serving the World!
Loving God is the worship life of our church and is the foundation from which we are empowered by the creative nature of God’s Spirit to do God’s work in the world. Worship offers invitation for service through our consistent presence among the faithful each week, bringing who we are and what we have before God to bless and be a blessing. At Grace we take seriously the call for all of us to witness with hospitality and friendship to all we meet, sharing the joy we have in meeting for worship and praise!
Living Like Jesus is the discipleship and evangelism focus at Grace. Our emphasis on life-long learning, from children’s and youth education and fellowship to adult Sunday School and Life Group offerings, focus our lives in deepening our walk with Christ. We build our lives together as we learn and grow toward being God’s people in a challenging global culture. We grow spiritually and intellectually, that we might then witness our faith to others. Finding ways to share and show how God makes a difference in our lives is vital to living the call God has for the world and all God’s people.
Serving the World is our hands-on missional focus leading us to live as Jesus in relationship to those most in need wherever they are and however that need manifests itself. We send folks in mission as we provide financial foundation and prayers of support and commit ourselves to walking with and beside those who are hurting and suffering, both in the Olathe community and in communities around the world.
Have you noticed our Yes I Can! boards in the hallway outside the Celebration Center? These boards are full of cards that represent opportunities to serve in ministry. Some are once a month, some are one time only, some are ongoing. With each is an opportunity to live out a part of our discipleship in volunteer service, give concrete foundation to our spiritual walk, and open doors to meeting others who soon become wonderful friends!
God calls each of us to be blessed to be blessings – why not have fun and put our hands and hearts in service along the way?!?
See you in Worship!