Every year I pray and go through a process for a Word of the Year for our church for the coming year. For 2021 God gave me the word THRIVE. In all the chaos of the season when people were suffering and reeling from Covid and all the governmental mandates and division that came from it, people were just trying to survive in 2020. We decided that wasn't good enough, and God made it clear that we are to Thrive. We have certainly experienced a thriving at Skyline Church. Over 1,176 decisions for Christ, 233 baptisms, over 15,000 people at Christmas nights––we're seeing God move, and Skyline is thriving with more and more people! Over the last several months as I’ve asked the Lord for the word of the year for 2022, it became clearer and clearer that Rooted is the word for Skyline Church.
Def: To establish deeply and firmly
I believe the main reason God gave me this word is because we have so many people that have made a decision for Jesus but are not connected any more than a Sunday service. Pre-covid the national average for church attendance was 1.3 times a month. This is someone who claims to be a Christian and claims a home church! There's no way to establish a deep and firm root base at 1.3x a month.
At Skyline Church, we're not interested in building a crowd. That's where it starts for sure, and of course we want to see crowds of people saying YES to Jesus. But we don't just want a Sunday event, we want a Sunday fellowship! We want to truly help people get rooted in their faith, rooted in the church, and rooted in our community.
We have to disciple people and show them how to live out the process. Colossians 2:6-7, “And now, just as you (1) accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must (2) continue to follow him. (3) Let your roots grow down into him, and (4) let your lives be built on him. (Result: 5) Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and (6) you will overflow with thankfulness” (Emphasis mine).
We see the process stated above in Col. 2:6-7. It all starts with a decision for Christ. But then, our work really begins. We’ve got to help them get connected and rooted in the Lord Jesus Christ. We have to teach them how to build their lives on Him. Only then, will their faith grow strong in the truth they are taught and that will cause them to overflow with thankfulness.
I'm asking you to think through what rooted means in your walk with Christ. How can you get more rooted and how can you help others get more rooted (more connected) in 2022? Do you need to root yourself, your children, and your family? While we'll always be focused on our Oikos, this year Skyline will be even more intentionally focused on helping people grow deeper roots whether they are brand new to the faith or have been a Christian for many years.
The first teaching series of the year will be called Rooted and it begins this Sunday January 9. We will look at key biblical practices that help people get rooted in the faith. Join us this Sunday at Skyline Church in Rancho San Diego, Lakeside, Kansas, or Online.
This is going to be a GREAT YEAR as we see more and more people establishing deep and firm roots in their faith!