OUR VISION – Christ Church at Grove Farm

OUR VISION

our vision

Thirty years ago, an elderly widow named Helen Grove had a bold vision that the rolling hills of her family’s farm could be turned into a haven where God was glorified and His people were served. That vision was shared by a group of Christ followers looking to plant and grow a new place of worship and the result was this spot we now call our church home, Christ Church at Grove Farm. Much has changed on this land in those thirty years, but that founding vision has not.

 

Today, we sum up our mission with Colossians 1:28, “He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ.” We have pursued that in all we do as a church, and we have reaped abundant fruit. Our hope is that the Lord will continue to use Christ Church as a part of his Kingdom building work. Such aspirations will require prayerful creativity as we minister in the context of an increasingly post-Christian world, where the influence of a life of faith is waning in the hearts and minds of many. As the society we live in continues to change all around us, how do we continue to pursue our mission vigorously and persistently?

I think we can take a lesson from both Jewish and Christian history. The temple of ancient Judaism included a Court of the Gentiles, a provision for non-Jews to have access to observe the Jewish faith up close. Likewise, early Christian churches were often built with a narthex or porch as an entry point for the person seeking a life of faith. Such environments provided a space for believers to interact with non-believers. As churches in America evolved, however, the focus shifted to the believers who congregated there, and intentional spaces to promote fellowship with outsiders lost priority. Even our neighborhoods used to be built in ways that encouraged people to interact informally, with houses constructed close together and a porch on every house where people passing by could gather. In our suburban environment, to the contrary, our houses are separated by trimmed green lawns and we put our outdoor spaces on the back of our homes, away from passersby.

At Christ Church, we are blessed to be seeing growth in our Sunday attendance. However, our challenge as a church with a heart and passion to introduce and grow all people in the Christian faith in an increasingly fragmented and lonely world, is to create contemporary “front porch opportunities” all week long, right here on our campus. And we can achieve that by intentionally offering to our congregation and our community inviting, engaging, and flexible spaces and programs where every person will experience genuine, loving interactions with “real deal Christians” in informal ways. Those interactions will bloom into supportive relationships which bloom into spiritual awakening. That is the impetus for our “For the Sake of the World” campaign.

We are immensely blessed with the Kingdom and community asset of nearly fifty beautiful, peaceful acres of land. We now seek to expand and update the physical spaces on our campus so we can meet real human needs through the love of Christ in new, more impactful ways, now and in the years ahead. Will you join me in making this vision a reality by sharing your prayers and your resources? Our goal is 100% church giving because every gift and every prayer is important. God is going to work through His people in this campaign, and that will manifest itself uniquely in each of us.

When you look back in the years to come, you will know you were part of delivering the life-changing love of Christ despite the evolving challenges all around us. As hockey great Wayne Gretzky once said, “A good hockey player plays where the puck is. A great hockey player plays where the puck is going to be.”  Let’s be great, for our God and for the sake of the world that does not know Him yet.

Pastor Craig