"Nowhere feels safe to me / Nowhere feels home / Even in crowds, I'm alone..." - Jon Foreman
Church should feel like family in the best ways. As we all know, relating to family isn't always easy. It has its joys and its hardships. But at the end of the day, its still yours. At the Mission Cincinnati, we desire to draw people into a family around Christ. We believe that He has welcomed us into the family of God, and as we receive His love we are strengthened to welcome others into the family as well.
We desire for everyone of our gathered expressions to be like living rooms for the city: places marked by peace and rest, places filled with joy, places where you feel welcomed, seen, known, and loved, places where you can extend that welcome and love to others.
Together, at the Mission Cincinnati we are called to BELONG.
"I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal,but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me."
- The Apostle Paul, Philippians 3:10-12
Relationships are not static. If there's no motion, no conversation, no give and take, no communication, no change, the relationship dies. We cannot remain unmoved in relationship. We are always either moving towards or falling away.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we desire to be a people whose relationships with Jesus are constantly in motion. We desire to move towards Jesus: whether that means knowing Him more after 80+ years of faithfully following Him or coming to know Him for the first time.
We believe that God gives us grace to seek Him, to move towards Him. To better receive this grace, we practice disciplines in our lives that help us press into all He has for us. These disciplines include prayer, study, community, fasting, worship, celebration, lament, silence, confession, solitude, communion, and more.
We practice these disciplines in community through structures of weekly celebration & worship, smaller mission communities, bible studies, and individual discipleship & prayer.
As we seek God in community with others, we change. We strengthen one another. We start to look more and more like Jesus by slow degrees. This is what growth looks like.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we believe we are called to GROW.
Americans, by and large, are power junkies. The "great" ones among us are known for the power they have that everyone else doesn't--wealth, fame, talent, strength. We live with principles of scarcity in view. We can be tempted to think that every good thing in our world--love, security, peace, dignity--is scarce and thus for must be grasped when available, held tight, and never shared.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we believe in and seek to follow a Jesus who is the King of a Kingdom. In Jesus's Kingdom the good things of love, security, peace, and dignity are not scarce, but ABUNDANT! There is so much of them on hand and we get to GIVE THEM AWAY! This is Jesus' way of exercising power: by serving.
We desire to empower every person to serve one another in the Church in ways that bring joy and allow each person to contribute their God-given gifts and personality so that all of us are built up together. This involves learning about ourselves, figuring out what God has blessed us with uniquely that we might give it away in joy to others! In this way we will be a church empowered to be like Jesus.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we are called to SERVE.
“God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house. God is in the silence of a mother who has infected her child with a virus that will end both their lives. God is in the cries heard under the rubble of war. God is in the debris of wasted opportunity and lives, and God is with us if we are with them.”
"Those are the people who go into underprivileged areas and form organizations to help nurture stable families. Those are the people who build community institutions in places where they are sparse. Those are the people who can help us think about how economic joblessness and spiritual poverty reinforce each other. Those are the people who converse with us about the transcendent in everyday life."
- David Brooks, The Next Culture War
Fear causes self-focus, whereas fascination breeds other-oriented attention. All too often our world only sees a Church that is afraid, a Church that out of fear for self-preservation has turned inward and away from the needs of a hurting world.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we desire for our lives to be inspired, directed, and moved by the Jesus who is Himself on motion towards the widows, orphans, fatherless, impoverished, and needy of our world. We desire to be the hands and feet of Jesus. To move with Him, receive His power to heal, and enact His works of compassion so that all might see and know that God is good and He has not given up on His world.
We desire to empower every person in our midst to find a place to serve in our city, to care for hurting, to fix broken things, and to join our wild God on His mission to make all things new.
At the Mission Cincinnati, we are called to GO.