This past Sunday was one of my favorite times in the history of our young church - Membership and Baptism Sunday! We celebrated new people coming to join our family, new life in Christ and we fellershiped with a wonderful lunch afterwards.
We celebrated those who feel lead to walk with us as a church, who feel that God has called them to walk in this local expression of His body here in Dallas, Texas.
Early in the week, I had several conversations around the topic of church membership and what it means to us at Normandy. This Sunday I tried to briefly share why we do membership.
One reason we have covenant membership at Normandy is because it is our way of expressing what happened to each of us when we were saved.
We were "added to the Lord."
In Acts 5:14, Luke says that "more than ever, believers were added to the Lord". When we are born again, we are added to the Lord Jesus Christ - we were added to His body.
When a boy, girl, man, or woman is saved, Jesus gets another pair of eyes to see with, a mouth to talk with, feet to walk with, and a heart to feel with. His body and representation on Earth grows. To be added to the Lord is to become a part of His body.
Membership is a tool to help express that thought -- that we are members of Christ and thus, we belong to one another.
1 Corinthians 12 Paul paints a picture of this analogy well:
That is why we have decided to develop our membership process and why we ask people to carefully and prayerfully join us. It is a way to align our hearts more deeply in what Paul calls "the body of Christ," a local expression of His life here on earth. And in order for a body to function well, are the parts are needed.
Additionally, membership provides intentionality that helps fight our natural inclination to isolate and walk alone. Not only can we intentionally walk together, but we also enter into a community that strives to live on mission together, caring for one another for our joy and His glory.
Membership isn't necessarily for life. To be "added to the Lord" is to go where He says to go. One day our son Jude will leave to start his own family, and in the same way, we will see people come and go as the Lord leads. But until that day, we will strive to walk with him in the context of our family.
And that is what we celebrated on Sunday -- new family members! What an honor that we would walk together and express His life on Earth.
I'm excited for the rest of our year and to see who else God might bring to our family!