OUR RHYTHMS: HOW WE LIVE
All of our environments are designed to spiritually form us into the image of Jesus, and out of the image of ourselves. One of the ways in which we are most formed is in the busyness of our culture. We believe that living in community with a local church frees us from the tyranny of the urgent, the next thing on the list, and the hurriedness of our society. At the same time, we believe that we should find ways to live our lives with one another, without overwhelming ourselves with just more to do. We do this by finding rhythms of life that we are already living in, and then inviting others to join us in those rhythms.
Twenty one times a week, we sit down and enjoy God’s creativity that has been prepared on a plate for our palate. At The Grove, we regularly schedule meals with people because it is an easy way to connect and enjoy one another while we do something that is already on our schedule: enjoy a meal to the glory of God.
We are in a culture that is pushing information on us with unprecedented volume and pace. We regularly set aside some time to listen to both God and one another. We believe that God has written His story down so that He can impart His story into our hearts and we believe that God is also the author of our story. When we listen to both God and one another, we experience the rich texture of God’s kingdom and share God’s love in ways that our over-informed culture desperately needs.
What if God’s people were known for how well they enjoy a good party? Jesus never shied away from a good party; in fact, His presence made them better (John 2.1-11). The Bible calls us to rejoice with those that rejoice (Romans 12.15). That means that when someone gets a raise, or has a birthday or an anniversary, we have a biblical opportunity to celebrate God’s goodness in a unique way. Not only do we pursue celebration as a rhythm, we also celebrate several dates on the Christian Calendar during our Sunday Gatherings. For example, Easter is a time of great celebration.
“Above all you shall keep my Sabbaths, for this is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I, the Lord, sanctify you” (Exodus 31.13). God has hard-wired us to rest because when we rest, we proclaim our trust that God has done all we need to be satisfied with us. Therefore, we find ways to rest and recreate with one another in order to restore balance to a busy life and beauty to a hurried soul. We do that as a community, but also encourage individual and regular times of rest and recreation.
We intentionally pursue blessing other people with words, gifts, listening ears, and intentional acts of kindness. God told Abraham that He was blessing him and his family so that he would be a blessing to others (Genesis 12.1-3). As God’s people, we have the joy of blessing people as a church and as individuals. There is perhaps no greater expression of the Kingdom coming to earth than the practical blessing of His creation. We intentionally discern how we can be a blessing to one another, our neighbors, and strangers along the way.