In this last message of the Ren 101 series Scott lays out a clear vision of what devotion to the church looks like. The norm in much of modern Christianity in America is nominalism. A strong argument against shoddy worship is given and an exhortation to give God the kind of worship He deserves. The aim of this talk was to inspire each person in the church to play their part well and to strive toward full devotion.
The invitation to dream big is found throughout Scripture but it’s easy to fall into thinking small for a variety of reasons: false humility, laziness, ignorance of the resources of God, delay, norms in the Church and so on. God tells us in the Word that “without a vision the people perish”. It is imperative for a church to have a collective dream they are striving for together or else they will fall into lethargy and even become lifeless. Scott spends most of this message talking about the dreams he has for Ren but in the last part presses home the importance of faith. That it’s not enough to just dream; we must dream according to God’s will; we must dream God’s dreams. Strong exhortation is given to stand firm in faith believing that God will do what He said He will do in time. An invitation is given at the end to pray the prayer of Habakkuk—“O LORD, I have heard the report of you, and your work, O LORD, do I fear. In the midst of the years revive it; in the midst of the years make it known; in wrath remember mercy.” Habakkuk 3:2
Since the church began in 2003 we have worked hard to articulate in writing and preaching the essential ethos of the church. Ethos is what drives us. It's the culture of Ren. In one sense all churches everywhere in every generation should have fixed aspects but in another sense each local church takes on unique shapes to incarnate the Gospel in the particular settings they are embedded in. This message is another attempt to bring clarity to what Ren holds dear as a church. Pastor Scott shares ten aspects of ethos that have distinguished the church since its inception. Messages like this are important not only for people trying to determine if Ren is a good fit but also as a reminder to the Core members of what sort of church we are striving to be.
As we enter 2019 and the 16th anniversary of Renaissance Church, Pastor Scott walks us through the early trials and hard lessons he’s had to learn as a church planter in New England. But from location to location, as God continues to pour out a fuller vision for what Ren is meant to be, what stands clear through the years is that God answers those who seek Him desperately.
This is the first message in a series exploring what God says about the church. A foundation is laid for the idea of membership and a strong argument is presented for the full devotion of each member. Pastor Scott also talks about the decline of the American Church and the great need for personal renewal in order to be fully functioning healthy members of a local church. The overall aim of this pastoral talk is to ignite a more full devotion to building what God is building.