In the bible, the terms “service” and “worship” are synonymous. Thus, we worship in song (hymns and contemporary songs), worship in the teaching of scripture, and worship in sharing and caring for one another. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.
Our service is both reverent and relaxed. We take God seriously but not ourselves. He is holy and powerful and should be approached with awe and wonder. At the same time, he is merciful and forgives our sins in Christ, so he knows what we are really like and we don’t have to put on a show of Sunday morning spirituality.
We strongly believe that children should attend church with their parents. Thus, we are used to coos, cries, and the occasional shriek of terror. If needed, there is a cry room next to the sanctuary, we call it “The Refuge”, to be used at the discretion of the parents during the sermon.
We won’t put any pressure on you. You are not expected to give anything (we do not “pass the plate”, join the church, or come forward to sing a solo. Feel free to participate as much as your conscience allows, or just sit back and observe. We celebrate communion once a month (First Sunday of the Month) for those who profess the Christian faith. If you are not a Christian or aren’t sure, you can just decline the elements when they are distributed.
Again, we are glad you found us. We hope you will visit our church family so we can get to know you better!
Saved by Grace. Walking with Christ. Loving One Another.
Foremost we are about worshiping God the Father, Jesus the incarnate Son of God, through the power of the Holy Spirit.
We are for Loving God with all our mind, all our heart, and all our soul. And loving others as ourselves. (Matthew 22:37-38)
In all our modes of operation or worship we will strive to make everything about and for Jesus Christ, since He is the source of our life and salvation. (1 Corinthians 10:31; Colossians 3:17)
We are for robust Biblically conservative teaching. Meaning that we believe that the Bible is God's inspired inerrant word, to exemplify this we teach through whole books of the Bible in a verse-by-verse expository fashion.
We are for the occasional topical message to address current issues or needs of the church body. (2 Timothy 4:2; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Hebrews 4:12)
We are for worship that engages both heart and mind. We will strive to sing songs together that extol God's character, His plan of salvation through Jesus, or songs that exhort and encourage us to do so. We are for both older and contemporary styles of worship music. (Psalms 86:12)
We are for welcoming both believers and unbelievers into our worship service. This provides a setting for all to get to know each other and for unbelievers to hear God's word, the Gospel, and experience Christ's love through a corporate setting.
We are for a "Come as You are" atmosphere, meaning that one does not need to dress up to come to church, yet at the same time we would desire that one would not dress in a manner that is visually distracting during worship. (Isaiah 55:1)
We are for our church family. We are for the healthy relationships of a family. Yet, understanding that families and relationships therein are gloriously messy and blessedly unpredictable. (Galatians 5:14)
We are for following Jesus together yet acknowledging individual responsibility. (1 Corinthians 12:27)
We are for finding opportunities to fellowship together. Yet, ensuring that folks do not neglect their personal family responsibilities. (1 Timothy 5:8)
We are for family worship. Thus, we do all we can to serve all generations within our worship service. Also, we are for finding opportunities that all generations can serve the body, to explore and exercise their gifts. (Romans 12:6-8)
We are for both corporate and personal evangelism. Corporately introducing folks to Jesus within the church setting, and individually in various one on one settings. We are for any evangelism method that accurately delivers the whole yet simple message of God's salvation plan through Jesus. (Matthew 28:19-20)
We understand that discipleship is “Hand in Hand” with evangelism. We are for the training and raising up of the next generation of leaders from within the church body. Thus, we will foster or provide opportunities to challenge the next generation of believers in the exercise of their God given talents and spiritual gifts for the equipping of the saints and building of the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11-13)
We are for knowledgeable and practical discipleship. Meaning that we will strive to not only study God's word, we will also strive to live it out.
As has always been there will be disagreements about doctrine. For our general doctrine please see our basic doctrinal statement (online at www.gcfmv.com).
First, we stress the understanding of Essential versus Non-essential:
Essential doctrine is that which defines us as a Christian versus the other beliefs of this world. Examples: Existence of God. Jesus being both God and Man. The Bible being the Word of God. Salvation by Grace alone.
Non-essential doctrine is that which defines us within the Christian community. Examples: Order of Church Service. Mode of Baptism. Types of Songs Sung.
Most important Understanding (as attributed to Augustine of Hippo 1600 years ago):
In the essentials we must have unity.
In the non-essential’s freedom.
In all things undeserved love.
(1 Corinthians 16:14)
We are for grace, meaning “God’s undeserved favor”, in that this is how God dispenses His redemption, His forgiveness, and the free gift of salvation. This free gift is received by faith alone and cannot be earned by any work performed by the sinner seeking that gift. (Romans 3:23-25; Ephesians 2:8-9)
As believers we are under grace (God’s undeserved favor) and not under the Law. The commandments did not and do not save us; however, they display the character of God and the good or proper boundaries for humanity. Thus, as believers the Holy Spirit uses the Law to reveal our character, then the Spirit convicts and grows us in maturity. (1 John 3:23; Galatians 5:13)
We are for a robust understanding of the sovereignty of God and His divine prerogative. Yet, we are also for a robust understanding of man's “God given” free will choices, in that man has Libertarian Free will (Man has the ability to choose contrary to God's will). In this we are also for the proper understanding of God's mighty ability to bring about His desires that cannot be thwarted by the free will choices of man. (Romans 9-11; Joshua 24:15)
We are for the continuing work and gifts of the Holy Spirit of God. We are for the expression of these works that will emphasize Jesus and do not become a source of distraction from Him. We are for worshipping the giver of gifts yet avoiding the tendency of worshipping the gifts or the experience of the gifts.
We are for knowing the essential truth that Jesus will one day return for His church and setup His Kingdom in the new heavens and new earth. We understand the non-essential nuances of the various interpretations of the Last Things, thus we offer freedom of friendly disagreement pertaining to these issues (Note: The Pastor holds to a Pre-Tribulation Rapture and a Pre-Millennial interpretation of Daniel and Revelation).
We are for definition described by Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew chapter 19 verses 4 and 5 “...he [God] who created them from the beginning made them MALE and FEMALE, and said, Therefore a MAN shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his WIFE, and the two shall become one flesh’?” In this Jesus made clear that God made and sanctified marriage as between two people, male and female, and man and wife. We will not support any other marriage arrangement.
We are led by a Pastor who is joined by small team of Elders. This “Board” is responsible for the basic operation and health of the body. The Pastor and Elders are not elected and serve for as long as they are needed.
Our main goal as leaders is to lead others and equip them to follow the Great Shepherd as we ever seek to follow and learn from Him also.
We always encourage new ideas and nudges from the Lord as they fit with who we are. However, we believe in personal ownership of your idea or nudge. Thus, the Pastor will give you prayer and support as you enact and follow through with what God is leading you to do.