Keeping the right perspective this new year is critical in experiencing new things. It is a parallel concept as far as a church family is concerned. We need a physical home, but we also need a spiritual home. Therefore, finding a church family is essential to our spiritual growth. The Old Testament concept of a gathering place is around the temple. In the New Testament, Jesus provided a new perspective of a gathering place called church when He declared, “…and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18, ESV). In this new setting, Jesus showed a picture of God’s Kingdom filled with His chosen people and called out ones as His dwelling place to fulfill His plan and purpose for humanity’s salvation.

It begins with Jesus as the Foundation Stone of God’s church family: “For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (1 Corinthians 3:11, ESV). An important question is this: How does this church function? By becoming a place where believers of Jesus are called to become living stones: “As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:4-5, ESV). Another major component of God’s church as His living temple is His Spirit dwelling in us: “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Corinthians 3:16, NIV).

In this gathering place called the church, believers are invited to become God’s dwelling place: “What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people” (2 Corinthians 6:16, NIV). It is a church where believers are called to follow the Holy Spirit’s leading: “Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us” (1 John 3:24, NIV).

Having served God as a church pastor for twenty-five years now, I firmly believe belonging to a church family is non-negotiable. It is a natural inclination of coming together as Jesus’ disciples. As such, having the Jesus Rock of Ages Ministries (JRAM) as my spiritual family and church in the past five years is both an opportunity and a privilege. Moreover, I am proud to say that JRAM is an active part of God’s Kingdom and the Body of Christ with a clear intention of seeing people believe in Jesus as their Lord and Saviour. A Christ-imitating inclusive church, JRAM is a family of believers where people are unconditionally accepted because “In JRAM, the welcome never ends.”

In this declaration of complete openness, we follow Jesus’ example of hospitality and care. Here’s an excellent portrayal of what a church family is all about: “A family is a shelter from the storm, a friendly port when the waves of life become too wild. No person is ever alone who is a member of a family” (Source Unknown). JRAM endeavors in following these principles in our church family.

If you haven’t found a church family yet, I urge you to look for such a place where you will experience real belongingness and where you will feel truly welcomed. In your search for a church family, please also remember that each church family is unique and its members are “work in progress” still. As the saying goes, even the best of men is man at best. It is for this reason that the JRAM family subscribes to the Lord’s commands when dealing with our family members: We labor to do all things in love (1 Corinthians 16:14). We love and care for our unique and imperfect family members.

At JRAM, you will always find our doors open because we love and care for everyone just as Jesus said we must do. And some day, hopefully soon, we hope to have you in one of our church family gatherings. As surely as the Lord wills, may you find your home in us.

Just come as you are to our church family “where the welcome never ends.”

Let’s talk again!


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