We've identified certain "signposts" associated with a person's spiritual journey at New Hope Church. When a person turns from their sins to Jesus and is saved, we rejoice. However, our work as a church is just beginning. We want to raise that person up to be a fully devoted follower of Jesus, or a "disciple who makes disciples." Jesus didn't say, "Have an altar call and you're done." He said, "Make disciples." Our church is committed to this disciple-making process. While each step in a person's spiritual journey is taken deep within the heart, the signposts are easy to spot.
Accept Christ: Baptism
Baptism is a picture of what Jesus did for us. It symbolizes His death, burial, and resurrection. He has commanded those who follow him to be baptized.
"...those who believed and accepted his message were baptized." -Acts 2:41
"...having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead." -Colossians 2:12
"We were, therefore, buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with him like thi in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection." -Romans 6:4-5
"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you." -Matthew 28:19-20
Worship Together: Attend Services
Another signpost is attending the corporate gathering of the church in worship. Bottom line, if you're a fully devoted follower of Christ, you go to church.
"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching." -Hebrews 10:23-25
Membership: Giving & Ministry
We believe every follower of Christ should be committed to a local church family. Anyone can attend a service, but membership means that a person is committed to the vision of the church by giving and serving.
Jesus said, "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate one and love the other, or you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money." -Matthew 6:24
"Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms." -1 Peter 4:10
Connected & Growing: LifeGroups
Spiritual growth happens as we build relationships with others, study God's Word, and experience life together. LifeGroups provide a comfortable environment to do all three.
We know from the book of Acts that the early church met, "...publicly and house to house." -Acts 20:20
Reaching Out: Missions
Missions are our short term missions trips and day-long service projects. It's our way of taking the love of Jesus outside of the walls of our church.
"Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity." -Colossians 4:5
This signpost can happen anytime, anywhere. It's where someone helps another take a step that they have taken. For instance, if you're attending worship services, invite someone else to attend with you. If you're in a LifeGroup, invite someone else to attend. If you're leading a LifeGroup, show someone else how. If you're on a Ministry Team, invite someone to serve with you. We want our people to "make disciples who make disciples."
"Therefore, go and make disciples..." -Matthew 28:19