Last Sunday we began our new series at Refuge—A Family For All Families. Every Fall we do a series on “who we are” and “what we do”. These series are always so encouraging to me for a couple of reasons. First, because these values flow from my own personal theological convictions. It is refreshing to be reminded, “John, these are the things you are to be about.” For instance, I remember reading “Desiring God” during a summer under the recommendation of a mentor. After I read the first few pages, I threw the book across the room. I felt convicted and went to pick it back up. I worked through it, and it has been one of the most life transforming books I have ever read.
Second, because these values are to be shared values. They are not only mine, but belong to God’s people—the church. I am so encouraged that I am not alone in living out these values. God has surrounded me with a “cloud of witnesses” that will hold my arms up when they are weak (cf. Exodus 17.11-12). Since I was in college God has created a family away from my family. When I went off to college my freshman year to play soccer, I gave no thought on how hard it would be to do alone. I mean I was at a very large school, but yet I spent many lonely nights in my dorm. I didn’t want to party with my soccer team. I could not find any strong Christian fellowship. Eventually I told my parents I wanted to come back home. They wouldn’t let me live in their home or even in Cincinnati (the city I grew up in). They said "you need to get out on your own". I moved to Dayton to attend Wright State, and ended up meeting a group of Christians who pushed me, encouraged me, and held me up. They were there to remind me who I was in Christ, and what that means for my daily living.
So what are these values? The value we have strived to build our church on is the "Glory of God". II Corinthians 4.6 tells us “the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” has been revealed to us. But there are those to whom this glorious Gospel is still veiled or hidden. Therefore, our primary goal at Refuge (and for my life) is to make much of Christ through our lives in our city and across the globe. Paul tells in I Corinthians 10.31 that whatever we do we are to do to the Glory of God.
Doxa means “glory” in Greek. This is who we are at Refuge City Church. We are called to be a City on a Hill that cannot be hidden. We have been called by God to enjoy Christ, and to let His light shine before all peoples for their joy and God’s glory.
Grace & Peace,
J. Pope - The Doxa Dude