Everybody has a message. The way you dress, the words you speak, the things you do all send a message to the world about who you are and what you value.
At VOUS Church, our message is clear: Jesus.
No matter what we do or where we do it, our biggest hope is that people from all walks of life encounter Jesus. To enhance this possibility, we strive to present appropriate examples of Christ-like behavior during our interactions with others.
We should exude love, peace, joy, understanding, concern and empathy as we go through life. These are outward expressions and evidence of our acceptance of Jesus as our savior and the benefits we experience from living our lives as followers of Christ.
We don’t have to preach to them or verbally explain anything, because actions speak louder than words and our actions will make them take notice of our unusual positivity, peace and comfort as we navigate through the travails of life.
As a church, we have several methods of spreading the gospel, from Instagram to Sunday services, but at the end of the day, the method doesn’t overshadow the message: Jesus. We demonstrate the tenets of Christianity by practicing the teachings of Jesus in our daily lives.
Jesus taught and attracted disciples through his actions and his acceptance of all people as being worthy of salvation. Our mission is to also attract others, whatever their behaviors, attitudes or prejudices, to experience the wonderfulness of the love of Jesus Christ. All are forgiven and all are worthy in the eyes of God.
Relationship vs Ritual
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. – John 3:16
The Bible makes it clear that God desires personal relationship with each and every person on earth. So much so that he sent his son to die for us, so that we could have direct access to God.
As a Christian, it is important to serve, and do devotionals and tithe; but none of those things are as important as your personal relationship with Jesus. When the tasks start to overshadow your relationship with him, then they lose all of their significance.
Jesus is interested in a personal relationship with every single one of us, no matter how far along we are on the faith journey.
In Luke 7, Jesus goes to a party with tax collectors, and never once tries to convert them to Christianity, or asks them to change their behavior. He simply hangs out with them, developing a relationship with them along the way.
If you want your faith to grow, you have to use it. You need to have a changeless core in order to operate in a world that changes constantly.
It’s a journey, and there’s a place for you wherever you are.
One of our main difficulties as human beings existing in a sinful world is that many of us cannot comprehend the meaning of a relationship with Jesus. How can I, as bad as I am, ever do that? We ponder. We question. We wonder.
Jesus declared to his disciples in Galilee:
And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. – Matthew 28:20.
He was telling us that he is always with us, regardless of external circumstances or our activities or behaviors, especially when we are bringing others into a relationship with Him.
Our task is to develop the faith to accept that declaration. After we have that faith, we need to learn how to recognize his presence and understand how he is giving us everlasting love, despite our sinful shortcomings.
In everyone’s lifetime, there are periods of chaos and uncertainty, fear and self-loathing, depression, loneliness and rejection. These are the times when we need to remember those words Jesus spoke.
Our relationship with him is what carries us through those times; for Jesus said he would be with us, even in bad times. These trials are when we should rely on our knowledge that he is there with us. This will give us the faith to know that, “This, too, shall pass.”
When times are happy and things are going our way, we should remember to give thanks to Jesus for these blessings and periods of comfort. However, blessings are also happening when times do not seem so wonderful; because these troublesome moments are opportunities for our faith to grow and for us to witness how Jesus stays by our side until our turmoil subsides.
By experiencing his presence with us during our daily tests as human beings, we begin to see and feel that he is always there for us, even when everything seems to be going against us.
A Public Declaration
At VOUS Church, we want everything we do to point people to Jesus. Whether it’s the smiles on our faces, creating a warm and friendly atmosphere and feeling of safety, or going out of our way to accommodate someone in need.
The company we keep reflects who we are. The way we approach people influences their reaction to us.
The details we emphasize paint a picture of our inner selves – our hearts and souls.
The message we spread echoes – resounding throughout the world around us, our world – the people near and dear to us.
It’s not about who is most holy, it’s about who is most available, helpful, loving, kind, understanding, forgiving and dependable.
Everywhere you turn to in the New Testament, Jesus is inviting the outcasts and the bad guys alike to come along on the journey. It is counter-cultural, it’s a learned behavior.
Be inclusive. There’s a place for everyone.
When we encounter the Jesus message, you realize that any and everybody is a candidate to be used by God. We don’t want to miss out on people because we don’t believe they could possibly be disciples.
Everyone is a child of God and each has an equal opportunity to live as Jesus taught us to live. The past doesn’t matter; it has been forgiven. The present is a time for change, realization and growth. The future can then be experienced as God designed it for us. We achieve this through the salvation granted to us by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
We want to be a church that’s not afraid to show up for people, no matter who they are or where they are on the faith journey.
He healed feet that would run from him. He opened eyes of those who would go out and lust. He opened up the ears of those who would listen to the lies of the enemy.
Even when we’re inconsistent, he’s consistent. When we hate, he loves, because love is who he is.
Jesus loved people, and that’s our biggest goal.