The Vision for the church is to:
Meet the Father, Become like the Son, Release the Spirit
This audacious desire lies at the heart of everything we strive for, and determines everything we do.
Meet the Father (The Presence of God)
Everything starts with an encounter with God. We long for a reality of relationship with God and an awareness of His presence with us. Without a fresh vision of the Father, we lose hope, purpose and direction. Without His presence, Church and following Jesus can become dry duty and dead religion.
We long for God, seek His presence, hunger and thirst for Him. We want our church to be a place and a people where God is obvious, where He is "manifestly present". Where He can be experienced. We don't simply want an academic understanding of some doctrine (however true it might be), but a life changing relationship with the living Lord Jesus, which is tangible, understood and experienced.
It will be obvious by the love. The supreme revelation of God is love (1
When God is present it is like an "atmosphere": the flowing and over-flowing of the Holy Spirit, an intimacy and integrity in worship, an expectation and hunger for God, a longing for more of Him.
When God is present by His Holy Spirit, miracles happen: "the blind see, the lame walk, the sick are healed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised and the good news is preached to the poor"
We want to become a people and place of the Father's unconditional love, the Lordship of Jesus, and ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit. God's supernatural church, for ordinary people. We want God's presence to be at the core of who we are.
Become like the Son (Discipleship)
Living things grow. If they don't grow, they're dead. We want to be a church where we're all growing spiritually. And that means discipleship. It means not just learning more about God in theory, but becoming more like Jesus in practice. It means a place of accountable, transparent, non-judgemental relationships. It means knowing others and letting ourselves be known. It means a place of encouragement, endorsement and love, and also sometimes of challenge. It doesn't mean "heavy shepherding", but nor does it mean "anything goes". This flies in the face of our individualistic consumer society, and looks more like a wonderful, loving, caring family, where roles are filled and responsibilities undertaken. It's Jesus' command (Mt 28:19-20). We want discipleship to be at the core of who we are.
Jesus didn't live for himself. Nor do we. At the core of who we are is a desire to reach out to those who haven't heard or haven't understood the gospel. We minister in a fallen world that is groaning under the consequences of man's selfishness, pride and indifference to God. So many people are in pain, and wounded spiritually, emotionally and physically. We share Jesus' friendship with the dis-advantaged, the marginalised, the sin-wrecked and the poor (Luke ).
We release God's Holy Spirit at home and support those who have taken this abroad. With friends and with strangers. With those who look like us, and those who don't. So we are both a "sending church" with a world vision and a community church with care for our immediate surroundings.