Learning More About How God is Shaping Us
As we pray and work towards Gospel Renewal in Orange County, some of the questions we’ve been asking are, what is our place? How is God shaping us and what does it seem like he is calling us to? What do role can we play alongside the other church doings great work in Orange County?
The one thing we’ve heard repeatedly in the last month is that people are seeing the relevance, weight, and wisdom of the Gospel.
- People who have joined us from more traditional mainline churches have said that they never knew how the Gospel had to do with all of their lives - their work, relationships, etc.
- Others who have joined us from more seeker-sensitive megachurches have said they appreciate the weight and depth of the Gospel and the faith that they’re growing in at Cross of Christ - being exposed to church history, creeds, catechism, and hymns.
- Lastly, from people who were spiritual but not religious we’ve heard that they now see why Christianity and the Gospel ‘works’ compared to how they were trying to live before - our Creator and Savior has much to say about how to make sense of sin, suffering, and how life is best lived.
As a church who wants to keep Jesus’ work for us in the Gospel central, this is something we are so thankful to see. Join us in praying that God will continue that good work in and through our young church.
Sharing Our Stories
One way we’re growing and connecting as a community is through sharing testimonies of God’s grace in our lives on Sundays and in community. For example, one young man shared his story of growing up in a Pentecostal church and seeing his relationship with a distant, impersonal Jesus depending on his personal religious experiences. He ended up OD’ing on a couch during a party, and coming to know Jesus has a personal, strong, faithful Savior who has saved him eternally and temporally from the consequences of sin. He shared how he now knows his faith depends on the strength of the object of his faith, Jesus, rather than on his personal experiences. We love to share testimonies because they are an act of worship, giving God the glory he is due, by articulating the Gospel message and giving a picture of what that has looked like in the life of our community.
Blood Drive for Hoag Hospital
In addition to have a thriving community in our church, we want to serve the cities and communities we live among. One way we did that recently was helping to coordinate a blood drive for Hoag Hospital through a non-profit called Music Saves. Hoag is an important institution in our area that serves the community so well and we were happy to help do what we could to help supply the patients and doctors with the blood they need to save lives. The representative for Hoag told me this was the first blood drive they did outside the walls of the hospital and that it went so well they will definitely do it again. Keep your eyes on our Instagram and Twitter feed for future opportunities.
This summer we’re focusing on training and health. We’re leading the charge in bringing Paul Tripp to Orange County for his first ever marriage event in the county. This event will serve hundreds of people in Orange County by giving them a Gospel-centered framework for their marriages and future marriages.
We’re also doing our first ever women’s and men’s retreats in July and August. We’ll be going camping at San Onofre and the hope is to create great weekends of both intentional restoration (prayer, reflection, worship) and fun (surfing, hiking, and other beach activities).