VISION AND GOSPEL RESPONSE THEMES
Marked by the cross of Christ forever, we, the congregations, ministries, and agencies of the Northwestern Ohio Synod are signs of and participants in the in-breaking reign of God in Christ Jesus.
What does this mean? It means we are…
ONE IN CHRIST
Because the Triune God is three persons, yet one God, and Christ Jesus draws us together at the foot of his cross, we commit ourselves by the power of the Holy Spirit, to embrace this God-given unity in our congregations, our synod and throughout the church, rejoicing, suffering, working and walking together with Christ Jesus. (John 12:32; 1 Corinthians 12; Ephesians 4)
GROWING AS DISCIPLES
Because God is at work in us, re-forming us like a potter through the Spirit, making us more like Christ Jesus, we commit ourselves to grow in faith and faithfulness through prayer, encounters with scripture, repentance, listening and sharing with others. (Jeremiah 18:1-4; Luke 24:26-27; Ephesians 4:11-13)
SENT WITH THE SPIRIT
Because in baptism the Holy Spirit has called, gathered and enlightened us, and sends us out into the world to be Christ’s hands and voice to make God’s love known, we commit ourselves to be servants of the Lord, sharers of God’s love, a blessing for others, and a welcoming people who invite others to “come and see” that the Lord is good. (Matthew 25:40; 28:19-20; John 20:19-23)
VALUING YOUNG PEOPLE
Because God promised young men would see visions and our daughters would speak for God, and because our Lord Jesus welcomed children, we commit ourselves to cherish our young people, provide safe environments for them in the church, and listen for God speaking through them as through us all. (Jeremiah 1:6-8; Joel 2:28; Matthew 19:13-14; 1 Timothy 4:12)
EXPECTING TO BE SURPRISED
Because our God is the God of surprises, who brings life out of death and hope out of despair in Jesus’ resurrection, we will anticipate with joy the new things that God is doing among us and through us as signs of and participants in the inbreaking reign of God in Christ Jesus. (Isaiah 43:18-19; Matthew 28:1-10; Revelation 21:5)
When people see us, do they see something of what God is up to in Christ Jesus?