Two Great Fears. One Solution.
God has been unbelievably kind to us as we have engaged in the early stages of starting Redemption Hill Church. We have had an incredible run since we arrived in Medford about 8 months ago. We have seen our first little Community Group of seven people grow into three vibrant Community Groups that meet on three different nights of the week. We have seen God answer prayer after prayer and open huge doors for us to love and serve our city. We have seen God provide an awesome place like Springstep for us to meet on Sundays, and most importantly, in a variety of ways, we have connected with people who are open to exploring Christianity and people looking for a solid church. But as great as all of this has been, I have two great fears as we start Redemption Hill:
1) I fear that we will operate out of our own resources and sufficiency, which will lead to ineffectiveness, burnout, and self-glorification.
2) I fear that we will barely make a dent in the enormous need for the gospel to penetrate this city and Greater Boston. I fear that we will not accomplish all that God has for us. In 30 or 40 years, I would hate to look back and say, “Man, we could have done so much more if only we had . . . you fill in the blank.”
So as we stand on the precipice of launching this church into the community and starting weekly worship on Sundays, it is right to ask the question: what can inoculate us from both of these dangers? What can keep us from relying on ourselves, rather than casting ourselves on the mercy and power of God? And two: what can enable us to make an unbelievable impact for the gospel in this city?
Answer. Great faith. Great faith will cause us at once to operate out of a constant dependence on God realizing that he is the one who holds the power to accomplish his mission, and great faith will also lead us to expect great things from God as we seek to lead many to discover why the gospel of Jesus Christ matters today. So how can we cultivate great faith?
First, we need a proper view of God and a proper view of self. We must approach God with complete humility realizing that we must serve in the strength he supplies. Second, we need to understand his authority over all things and his authority over his mission in particular. The authority of Christ is big enough for the mission of Christ. Confidence in the character and work of God breeds faith. Third, we simply need to ask. We should beg God to increase our faith. We should pray like the father of the boy with an unclean spirit when he pleaded with Jesus: “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief” (Mark 9:24) Finally, we should fill our minds with God’s truth and step out in faith. Our faith is challenged and matured in the context of mission. When we step out to pray for others, love others, and serve others, God will test our faith and work it into our hearts.