We have been emphasizing the importance of authentic community over the last year. If we want to stay true to our vision to be a church that Loves Like Jesus, we must build a community that reflects the love of our Lord Jesus Christ. One way we facilitate such community at SDBC is through community groups. Many of us have been a part of a community group for a long time, but some of us have yet to try engaging in a weekly or bi-weekly group that gathers to study the word of God and also to build friendships that are reflective of God's covenant relationship with us. This Sunday, we will study Jonathan and David's friendship as a part of our sermon series--David and the King. As we study this beautiful friendship from the bible, let us also think about how we can build such friendships in our church community. If you haven't joined a community group yet, please consider joining a group to not only find these friends that would love you as Christ loved you but also to be that friend for someone else who needs such Christ-like friends in their lives. To join a community group, sign up online here.
As many of you know, Lauren Wootton went to Uganda this summer on a two-month missions trip. While there, she worked with the Watoto organization to care for and rehabilitate babies.
Before she left on this trip Lauren was nervous; what would God be doing with her? How would she be stretched? Would God call her to something she was afraid of doing? All of these thoughts swirled around in her head as she left her home and stepped into the great unknown that God was calling her to.
If you were to ask Lauren what God taught her through this missions trip, one of the things she would say is, “to walk by faith and not by sight.” As she stepped foot on the plane, Lauren held her own expectations of what the trip would be like and felt she could "see" what was in store for her in the coming months. She anticipated a life-changing trip in which she would run on excitement and joy the whole time due to her incredible passion for children and babies. Lauren expected to fall in love with this new adventure. However, upon arriving in Uganda, Lauren’s expectations were shaken. Things were not what she expected, she did not feel like she was supposed to be there, she felt no connection, and even encountered serious feelings of homesickness. Her missions trip was not going how she thought it would. It was not the exciting and life-changing trip that she anticipated it being. And it wasn't life-changing until she fully gave herself over to God, asking Him to show her what to do, and how to go on living the next two months.
Once Lauren decided to walk by faith and not by sight, and stepped out into the great unknown ahead, everything turned around. A group of girls befriended her, showed her around the area she was living, and taught her what it means to be in community. Once settled after a few days, Lauren fell in love; she fell in love with the people of Uganda, the little babies that she was put in charge of, and she fell even more in love with her heavenly Father. It was on this trip that she learned that God is her greatest strength, her provider, her closest friend, and the light that leads her in every situation.
Hearing Lauren’s amazing story and the testimony of her trip convicts me to think, in my everyday life, am I remembering to walk by faith and not by sight? Perhaps this is something that all of us can ponder as we continue on with our lives this week.
You can view Lauren's interview video here.
There are many transitions that come along with heading into the fall season. We shift into new schedules, students head back to school, we say goodbye to the sun, and, for our church, we have launched a new service format. Transitions bring both challenges for us as we adjust, and provide new opportunities for us to engage. One opportunity for all of us to engage in is our new hospitality initiative called Initiative 9:50. The idea behind this initiative is simple: that we would get into the mindset that church starts at 9:50AM when we connect with each other and with new people to our church. This initiative is the foundation for building a new culture of hospitality at SDBC. This is something everyone can engage and participate in as we Love Like Jesus.
Along with Initiative 9:50, we have made a number of changes to our hospitality systems in order to reinforce and grow this new culture of hospitality. We are looking for new people to step up and serve on our hospitality team. Do you love connecting with people and are you looking for a new way to connect and serve at church? Joining the hospitality team might be the perfect opportunity to engage further at SDBC this fall. We are looking for people to join our new parking lot greeting crew, our coffee serving team, and our connections follow-up team. But, maybe you aren’t best suited for being in a role that involves directly connecting with people. That doesn’t mean you can’t be on the hospitality team! We are also looking for people to help on the set-up team and in administrative/coordinating roles, as well as people with unique skills like interior design or graphic design; these are all giftings that can help contribute to building a culture of hospitality at SDBC.
If you are interested in serving in these areas, or would like more information on a potential role, please send an e-mail to Pastor Jordan at .