We are called to fulfill the Great Commission of Matthew 28 where Jesus said "Go and make disciples of all nations...." We realize that in order to make disciples, we have to build an initial relationship with people. We desire to ENCOUNTER people where they are. In other words, we cannot expect people to just come in the doors of the church because we open them. No, we need to go meet people where they are. As a church, when we program, we want to be strategic about that programming. Sometimes we have events and programs where the sole purpose is so we can meet people. What's the ultimate goal of the ENCOUNTER level? It is to build an initial relationship and invite them to a CONNECT event.
CONNECT events are our weekly worship service. The goal of this level is for someone to have a personal relationship with Christ. We know according to Romans 10:17, that "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God". We want our weekly worship services to be Gospel-centered where the Gospel is shared each and every week. There is a chance to respond at the conclusion of each service. Once someone has asked Christ to come into his/her life, then we need to make sure we are pushing them to GROW in that personal relationship. This is what discipleship looks like.
If all we do as a body of believers is see people come to know Christ, then we have ultimately failed at fulfilling the Great Commission. Yes, it starts with a relationship with Christ. From there, we have to grow in our walk with Christ. We have our Sunday School classes set up and designed to help you not only grow in your walk with the Lord, but also to experience biblical community, fellowship and accountability. It's our desire to see our Sunday School classes grow as more and more people are coming to know the Lord.
In addition to our weekly Sunday morning classes, we also have our MidWeek programming. Midweek is designed around smaller 6-8 week classes that are more specific to an individual's needs. Classes include marriage classes, parenting classes, men's and women's classes, etc. All are geared around helping people grow in their walk with Christ.
Multiplication is much better than addition. As someone is growing in their walk with Christ, we want to see them GO and find someone else to help walk them through this process. We are called to GO. That can mean next door, at work, at the store, across the state, or across the world. Bottom line, we have a message of hope to share and we need to take that message and GO. We can do this through various mission opportunities, service opportunities, or simply one on one conversations.