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Shaping The Culture Of Jubilee
‘Culture is the atmosphere in which the church functions. It is the prevalent attitude. It is the collage of spoken and unspoken messages’
The church is the hope of the world.
And although we are part of Jesus’ one global church, that one church is made up of diverse local expressions all over the place. This is the beauty of Jesus’ glorious bride, His church.
So what do we look like?
What are the principles, standards, the way we behave, attitudes, the way we do things, what we believe church should feel like, that makes Jubilee the church God has called us to be?
You see VISION is where we feel God wants to takes us. It's a minds eye picture of the future that inspires passion and movement.
MISSION is what we need to do to get there. It's the detail. It’s the specifics.
VALUES AND CULTURE however is different - its the impressions people bump into as they encounter the church on a Sunday, at a prayer meeting, on tweets and posts, in the workplace or at the school gate.
We believe God has called us to 4 values all beginning with the word WE, highlighting that WE are all in this together, every WE in the church!
They are also rooted in the very names and heart of God, underlining crystal clear that Jesus is the reason for all 4 of them.
So what are they?
What kind of church is Jesus building on Teesside?
What are the distinctives that mark us out?
Because God is our Strength and Song
At the heart of Christianity is joy, enjoyment, rejoicing, thankfulness and praise. Thats what our very God given name 'Jubilee' means. When God the Holy Spirit invades our very being the Apostle Paul tells us that amongst other things, joy fruits in our lives.
We “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice” (Phil. 4:4).
Because God is Love
In the famous story of the Parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus describes a love that crosses barriers. In this story God puts a Jew in the road, beaten and dying, and a Samaritan on horse back rescuing and caring. Culturally this would have been offensive and shocking. Samaritans and Jews were not friends! However through this story, Jesus says to all of us - Go and do likewise.
Love God and love each other, no matter what.
1 John 4:7
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God…..We love because He first loved us.
And so as those who have been transformed by His love, a love beyond reason, we love and welcome others, EVERYONE, into God's fellowship of life and love too.
Because God is our Father
'Sonship' is the security and the certainty from which all our doing is based.
God is creating a culture where everyone sees purpose, opportunity, gifting and kingdom calling in each other like a loving dad nurturing his daughter into all she can be.
1 John 3:1
Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God
We are inspired and inspire others, we are encourged and encourage others, we are lifted and lift others, to the great call of God together from this foundation and this foundation only. This is the grace of God. Everyone has a place at God's banquet table!
In fathering and mothering 'my ceiling becomes the next generations platform'.
Because God is Light
4 In him [Jesus] was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
In a dark abyss all it takes is the little flicker of a candle flame to light up all around. Nothing defeats darkness like light! We are on the winning side. Jesus already has the victory. He is the conquering King. So in His victory we go!
He says “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Christ in us, the hope of glory!
These are the values that God is increasingly going to shape us into over the years to come.
A culture where men and women from all backgrounds and ages and stories will bring the joy-news of Jesus to everyone, everywhere!
Will you play your part?