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Equipping Singles and Marrieds: The Foundation of Transformed Churches

Posted on August 30th, 2013

Geri and I have led a small group in our home for 25 of our 26 years at New Life. In fact, we begin our next one this coming week. We take a group of 16-18 people, marrieds and singles, and spend an intensive year together. Why do we do it?  The answer is simple: this is foundational to being a church where people are deeply transformed. Scripture teaches that both Christian singleness and marriage are sacramental vocations and prophetic. They each make visible the invisible reality of our marriage to Christ and are signs of God’s kingdom to a broken world (See Matt. 19:10-12 and Eph. 5:32). This vision is a far cry from both our secular and present church culture. I am daunted by the number and the complexity of issues bearing down on our people – the sexualization of our culture, dating, pornography, homosexuality, divorce, cohabitation, objectification of people, the challenges to celibacy, graphic novels and fantasy, masturbation, shame, loneliness, the changing landscape of community  – to name a few. Last night I finished up a two-week class on “Love, Sex, and the Meaning of Your Life.” The sheer complexity of people’s questions reminded me afresh of the reality of where our people are living. You may not feel like you have all the answers. I sure don’t. But unless we courageously enter into this arena with God’s perspective, I am afraid that we will continue to see little difference between people inside the church and those outside. Let me invite you to listen to a sermon or two on this entitled “Our Body, Our Sexuality, and Our God” that I gave a couple of years ago. We will post the video links to the class I just finished also on my Facebook and Twitter account in the next week or two.

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Church Culture Revolution: A 6-Part Vision That Deeply Changes Lives