Engaging life and impacting our neighborhoods as disciples of Jesus.
BE A WITNESS.
ESTABLISH AN EMBASSY.
LEAVE A TESTIMONY.
1. Each life will be a witness to the reality of the Risen Christ. As the people of Grace, we don’t just want to profess that we believe in Jesus, we want people to see Jesus at work in us as we depend upon and learn from the mind and heart, the habits and the practices of Christ. Witnesses provide evidence. Together we want the presence of the resurrected Jesus to be witnessed through our words and acts of love and forgiveness, service and sacrifice. 2. Every home will be an embassy of the Kingdom of Heaven. If we are described as ambassadors for Christ, then the spaces where we live ought to become embassies of the Kingdom of Heaven. Discipleship begins at home. This means seeing the spaces we occupy and inhabit as well as the people we share them with as sacred and holy. We want everyone to feel welcome to come to our church, our desire is to invite others into our lives—our homes—as places of prayer, hospitality, refuge, healing and hope. 3. Our legacy will be a testimony to the truth and power of the Gospel. When our time on this earth is done all that we can leave behind that we will matter, that will endure is the testimony of our faith—our life in Christ. We want our legacy to reside not in a building or other material resources but in the ongoing story of changed lives—reconciled and restored relationships—redeemed and resurrected individuals, marriages, families and communities across generational, ethnic and socio-economic lines.
BY FAITH, WE BELIEVE...
EVERYONE IS A CHILD OF GOD.1
•Each life has been fearfully and wonderfully made and exists with a purpose and a destiny to be discovered in Christ. •Each person is my brother or my sister and even though how we live our lives may be different, we are united in our need for and the gift of our Father’s covenant blessing through Jesus.
WE ARE CALLED TO SERVE ONE ANOTHER.2
•Together we walk humbly with our God when we act justly with our neighbor and practice mercy with our enemies. •We represent our Father and his Kingdom when we are ambassadors of grace, ministers of reconciliation and witnesses of the Resurrection.
APART FROM JESUS, WE CAN DO NOTHING.3
•We rest in the work Christ has done for us in order to do the work that he calls us to do. •Everything we do is in the name of Jesus and through the power of the Holy Spirit.
LOVE IS THE HIGHEST LAW.4
•If we are not speaking the truth in love, then we are not speaking the truth of the Gospel. •Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ; therefore we will not separate anyone from Christ’s love.
GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH AND SCHOOL FAITH STATEMENT
As part of the global Church of Jesus Christ, as the community of Grace, we believe:
•The problem infecting and haunting every inch of creation is sin. Sin is humanity’s rebellion and rejection of God our Creator wherein in worshipping ourselves, we make God less than God is, and we make ourselves less than we were created to be. Besides the evil and injustice sin breeds, the inevitable and unavoidable consequence of sin, we all experience is death. •The only remedy to the problem of sin is the initiative of God through the life and death of Jesus Christ on the cross forgiving our sin (Romans 3 – 4), healing our brokenness (Hebrews 10:19 – 23; and reconcile us to God and to each other. (2 Corinthians 5:18 – 21; Ephesians 2:14 - 18) •Jesus Christ not only died for our sin; He rose from the dead. The resurrection of Jesus Christ stands as the proof of who we profess Jesus to be, as the redemption of the problem of evil, as the historical act that defeats the power of death and as the assurance of God’s promise of eternal life. •Jesus, fully divine as the Son of God, and fully human as the Son of Man, is the only full and complete revelation of God and is therefore the only Savior of the world and the Lord of all creation (John 3:16; Acts 2; Colossians 1:15-20). •Salvation is God’s gift to us, grasped through faith by grace. We contribute nothing to our salvation. Even faith is first a gift of God to which we are called to respond. Before we believe in God, God believes in us, in and through Jesus Christ (John 14:6; Acts 4:12; Ephesians 2:8 – 9; 1 John 4:10) •This new life in Christ is offered and nurtured by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit leads us through our spiritual rebirth and into an ongoing experience of transformation as part of the Body of Christ, the Church—those who confess, follow and serve Jesus. •We are called and empowered by the Holy Spirit to witness this Gospel in faith and practice, in word and deed, to share this story so that others may receive and embody the forgiveness, healing, freedom and purpose borne of God’s salvation. •The Bible is the Word of God, inspired by God but entrusted to the writing and style of human authors. As such, it is trustworthy and is the ultimate guide to our faith and practice (Psalm 119; 2 Timothy 3:16-17). •The return of Jesus Christ is imminent. He will return to consummate the work and witness of his life, death and resurrection, to complete the recreation of all things and to thereby fulfill the reign of God.
Additionally, in the practical outworking of our faith in Christ, we wrestle with the following cultural and ethical issues accordingly:
•We teach a full and healthy sexual relationship exists only within the confines the covenant of marriage. Jewish and Christian marriage, as defined by God through the scriptures, is the lifelong union of one man and one woman. We believe that sexual brokenness is but one of many manifestations of the tragic nature of our humanity. We do not affirm a hierarchy of brokenness and we affirm God’s forgiveness of all sins in Christ. •We teach the sanctity, dignity and defense of all human life. We believe that we have a responsibility to be good and proactive stewards of the peace, wellbeing, shelter, nurture and care of all people—no matter what stage of personhood, gender, sexual orientation, religious faith, economic class or ethnicity. We acknowledge and share God’s heart for the orphan, the widow, the prisoner, the refugee and the marginalized. •We teach that our stewardship role encompasses all creation as well as all human life. We believe that we have a responsibility to respect, to cultivate, to recycle and to ensure the continuance of the natural resources and environments entrusted to our care.