You are

Invited


Below is the first invitation that was sent to a small group of brothers on June 23, 2017. There was no place to meet yet determined, there was no organization behind it, there was simply an act of faith to invite a handful of saints into what God was stirring. It began as Christ's, founded solely upon Him, and we all now work to preserve it as His. To Him alone be the glory!


Brothers, 

I'm writing to you because I treasure you and have witnessed your passion for the Lord firsthand. Each one of you are very different, yet very beautiful in my eyes. Most of all, what binds us together is our love for Christ and one another. With this in mind, I must share with you what I feel is quite important and invite you into it as my friends.

God has been stirring on my heart in new and deep ways this year. My passion for Him is overflowing. As I prayed over this coming quarter and His own desires for me in it, I have felt a pressing burden to help plant a new group of men who depend wholly upon the Life of Jesus, seek and exalt Him together, and encourage one another. This concept has been upon my heart since two years ago, but I feel like now is the time I am to act.

For clarity, let me first explain to you that this time will NOT be: 

  • A Bible study; though we will discover Christ together through scripture and we will share scripture
  • A book club; though we will all encourage members to read books outside the group that have spoken to our hearts, equipped us, and revealed Christ more deeply
  • A society or social gathering; though we will build authentic community life together
  • A time for us to focus on ourselves or our lives; though we will discover how to find and source our life from the Life
  • A time dedicated to sharing prayer requests; though we will listen for what the Lord wants to speak over us
  • A set of perfectly orchestrated worship songs; though we will worship songs we collectively know and dance and raise our hands together
  • A time for sermons; though we will each have time to teach as the Spirit moves and leads and gives us new insight to share with His body
  • An effort to do good deeds for others; though we will naturally find opportunity to meet one another's needs and God's burden for others will land upon our hearts, driving us to action
  • A half-in commitment; though we will surely come as we all are and not force any rules or laws upon one another
  • An organization; though we will be an organized gathering that organically expresses Christ together and will have men from all types of organizations
  • Dedicated to a particular theology; though we will come together under the creed of Jesus Christ Himself, Son of God, Son of Man, no more and no less, united in His Spirit regardless of our backgrounds, denominations, eschatology, theological emphases, favorite preachers, etc.
  • A movement; though we will all surely learn to move more in the Way together
  • My or anyone's group; this assembly of saints will belong solely to Christ Himself

On the other hand, this will absolutely be:

  • A practice of exercising His headship over us, mutually submitting to one another in Him; in other words, there will be no "leader" other than Christ Himself through His Spirit
  • Focused on the quality of the Lord's growth in our spirits, not the quantity of growth in our numbers
  • A radical, passionate, sometimes undignified expression of love for Jesus
  • A testing of our comfort zones at times; we will absolutely experience the peace of God, but that peace may also look like fire at times
  • A catalyst in our personal lives toward the deeper things of God
  • A time in which we are all built up together
  • Something the Lord grows and changes and leads over time; it is not for us to come in with our expectations
  • Like nothing else you have ever experienced before, I am convinced
  • The church in beautiful, marvelous action!

In short, this will be a powerful and glorious expression of Christ's headship, made evident through the animation of His Life through us as members of Him. We will see the flock, field, city, nation, priesthood, temple, house, family, body, and bride of Christ come alive in front of our very eyes. Most importantly, as one in Him, we will see Jesus Himself made manifest!

If this seems at all interesting to you, I am asking you to reserve the following time now so that we might come together as a small initial group of men to listen to the Lord together, pray over this seed I believe He is growing, and mutually determine the best course of action forward. 

When: 6:30 - 8:30 AM, Thursdays
Where: The Department

I will send out an invitation following this. If you feel you have any further direction and insights into what I believe the Lord is starting here among us and our city, I look forward to your wisdom and insights. Please feel free to email or call me about any of the above. 

Last but not least, if you do not feel compelled to this, please know that I love you dearly and I respect whatever decision you make. I know we are all busy. However, if you are willing to make the commitment to this vision of Christ and His body in action, I promise you will be changed. We all will, together.

Your brother in Christ and His love,
Jonathan


This very same invitation remains open to you now. Join us Thursday mornings at The Department in downtown Phoenix, from 6:30 to 8:30 AM. Learn more.