What We Believe
Our Shared StoryGlad Tidings is a community of Christ-followers that recognize we are a part (both individually and collectively) of a story that is larger than ourselves. This story is the account of God's relationship with humanity and is marked by great triumphs as well as catastrophic failures. It is because we see story as the chief vehicle for the transference of God's grace that we offer you this brief telling as a representation of what we believe. While doctrine and creed have their places, it is story that sweeps us up into itself. It is story that speaks not only to the mind but the heart as well. And it is story that shapes us into our God imagined selves.
At the beginning of the story there was God, who in his very nature (Father, Son and Spirit) embodied communal love. As the ultimate artist, God created all that there was and it was good. Among his creation He chose humanity to bear His image and serve as steward of the rest of His creation. The harmony of this "good" beginning was disrupted, however, through humanity's willful refusal to respect the boundaries set in place by God and as a result sin (that which separates humanity from God) entered into our shared story.
Nevertheless, God did not give up on humanity but instead sought to redeem it. Thus God called a man named Abraham, with whom He swore a covenant on His own name to bless him in the fathering of a nation, Israel. This nation would demonstrate God's love and concern for the world and in doing so help co-redeem it. Through poets, prophets, priests and philosophers God communicated his plan for the healing of humanity. When following this path, Israel modeled a community of peace, love, justice and hope. When abandoning it, Israel found itself embracing foreign paths that ignored the plight of the poor and disenfranchised. In doing so Israel furthered the ills of oppression and marginalization that were symptomatic of humanity's separation from God. In Israel's failure to follow God's path the need for redemption became abundantly clear to a select few, who through their prophetic imagination, envisioned a Kingdom ruled by God where love, peace and justice prevailed.
Believing that God never abandoned His covenant with Abraham or his descendants, and that His desire to bless all nations through him remained ever steadfast it is our belief that this covenant and Kingdom was re-established on earth through the person of Jesus, the Christ. Both fully human and fully God, Jesus was born into this world so that through his life, death and resurrection we may once again enjoy intimacy with God. We also believe that by following the example set for us by Jesus we may further establish God's Kingdom here on earth and thus fulfill our calling to be co-redeemers with God.
We believe that having been crucified and buried, Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to the Father. In doing so He sent His comforter, the Holy Spirit to establish, empower and guide the church (universally, globally and locally) until the time when He would return to usher in a new Heaven and new earth.
And while we primarily draw our understanding of this story from the Bible we also readily admit that we are currently penning our own chapter of this story by showing the love and speaking the truth that is transforming our lives as a result of our relationship with Jesus, the Christ.
(34) But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. (35) And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. (36) "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?" (37) And he said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. (38) This is the great and first commandment. (39) And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. (40) On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets."
(16) Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. (17) And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. (18) And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. (19) Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (20) teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."
Our MissionIn keeping with the biblical mandates of both the "Great Commandment" and the "Great Commission," we, at Glad Tidings, understand that our faith must be an active faith. That is why we express it in the following equation:
Show Love Speak Truth = Transform Life
We believe that we are to love unconditionally in the manner that Christ loved while at the same time speaking truth regardless of how difficult or inconvenient it may be so that lives (ours and others) may be transformed with the hope of Christ.
"The real presence of Christ as a world-governing force will come solely as his called out people occupy their stations in the holiness and power characteristic of him, as they demonstrate to the world the way to live that is best in every respect." - Dallas Willard
Our ValuesWe hold the following values essential to our mission of passionately, intelligently and effectively showing love and speaking truth:
Our community enjoys a long history of ethnic, socio-economic and educational diversity. Therefore we treasure an environment that fosters unity and not uniformity. We see power in paradox and healthy tension. It is our belief that there are as many ways to be a Christ-follower as there are people. For that reason Glad Tidings is a community that seeks to demonstrate a thoughtful balance between paradoxical pairings such as the following:
Genuineness is key to our worship. Our belief is that worship is far more than the songs we sing or play, the services that we hold and even the giving of our time and possessions. Rather, it is the totality of our existence. We worship through our work, through our play, through our care for one another and even through our embracing of the other. In everything we do we purpose to do for the glory of God.
A Family of Servants
Our community understands itself primarily as family. As brothers and sisters united in the heart and mind of Jesus we seek to love one another in the simple graces of service and by preferring each other to ourselves. Our community is most fully a family when we are providing service to the larger community (neighborhood, city, country, world) in which we find ourselves. This service flows from a sense of obligation to show through word and action our belief that the entire world was created by, and is loved by God.
Cultural renewal, if it is to begin anywhere, should begin in our churches and in our own hearts. We believe that culture changes when a society's mind, heart, and aspirations are captured by new ideas and images that are developed by thinkers and artists, expounded in both scholarly and popular forms, depicted in innumerable works of art, literature and entertainment, and then lived out attractively by communities who are committed to them. We seek to be such a community.
Thus, we are dedicated to fully engaging the life of the mind, creativity in the arts, and a winsome way of living. Our hope is that by doing so we may help the following statement made by the Christian philosopher, Dallas Willard, become a reality.
"The real presence of Christ as a world-governing force will come solely as his called out people occupy their stations in the holiness and power characteristic of him, as they demonstrate to the world the way to live that is best in every respect."
Send a message
For your safety, please re-enter your password below.