Tojan Going Away Party June 3rd!

Hi Everyone!
It’s that time of year when school is wrapping up and summer is about to begin.
It is also time to say goodbye to Tojan.

Please join us at our home, this Sunday, June 3 at 4:30pm for Tojan’s going away party!
We will have food, fun and fellowship as well as a bonfire to say farewell to our Jordanian Jewel!
Please come and stay as long (or short) as you want. Bring a snack to share and maybe a chair.

Our address is 7605 Sims Rd., Waxhaw, NC 28173
RSVP to Corina at 704.604.2962…you may call or text! (computer down, if email, email Mark).
Look forward to seeing you!
Corina Patterson

2. Sacraments: Baptism and Lord’s Supper

Sacraments is Latin… it means to mysteriously make sacred.
Ok, so for me, it’s one of those really really difficult ones.
Baptist and similar families just believe in “Ordinances“… just an obedience thing, no real mystery.
Catholics on the other end, believe in these- God acts through the priest and “saves”.
I’m more in line with my Methodist Heritage but i like to grab a bit from the Presbyterians too.
I believe in infant and adult baptism, both. I can support it scripturally, really pretty easy.
I do think something mysterious happens. God’s spirit, combined with faith, and something occurs.
Jesus directed us to do these, utilized a symbol, and we must combine with faith.
Baptism is the “entrance” into the community. I believe, with Presbyterians, that this is a communal, covenant like entrance for babies. They can grow up within the Covenant Community and all the benefits that brings, just like a circumcised Jewish boy could. That child is absolutely “included” and “called” a member of the Christian community. For those that say children can not be full members (actually methodists say that so here i diverge with them) of the Church… wow… it’s just hard for me to grasp that… and truthfully, that’s in my opinion more of a reaction to protect salvation theology. I think we really just need to come to grips with the fact that Jesus really really loved and included kids… and Jewish kids were in the covenant… and whole households were baptized… yikes… i love you that disagree with me… please give me grace on this.
At the age of accountability they are responsbile and must decide for Christ themselves.
I don’t believe that the act of baptism causes rebirth.

On the Lord’s Supper, Eucharist (greek for thanksgiving), Communion: I believe the table is open. Like John Wesley, i think people can meet Christ in that moment. I don’t know why a non-believer would come to the table, but if they are seeking God, i say come. We explain what it’s all about, what Christ has done, and even those like children and those mentally handicapped, who don’t “understand“,… can likewise take.
Jesus loved kids… and how much did i understand as a “baby” Christian when i took communion?
Understanding it i believe is a false limitation. To not let children come to Christ due to a lack of understanding, i think is not good.
I’d rather not allow people to come that come in disrespect… and i think many more “Christians” do that than non Christians come to the table.
But who wants to be the “Table Police“. People may believe in a closed table…but few truly practice it.

The point of all is to be identified with Christ in baptism and communion, to worship him in this sacred community,…. not limit the invitation, but ask all who would earnestly seek God to come.
As the Holy Spirit comes inside, the mystery of transformation begins, with us as aids in discipling.
We should clearly proclaim the Gospel and allow the Holy Spirit to work.

1. Orthodoxy, Doctrines, Theology, Essentials, Non-essentials

Orthodoxy is “right belief”. These Doctrines are the historic essentials of what defines a Christian to be a Christian. And no, not all agree. But historically, most “conservative” “orthodox” “evangelical” people, however you refer to them,… hold to some basics, these basics I would call the Essential Doctrines. Those are listed in our “Core Beliefs”.

Of course there are minor doctrines that become less important… and vary in interpretations within varying family streams of the Christian faith. For example, most all believe Jesus is coming back… but describe in various systems. Most believe in baptism, but might practice differently. How Polity (church governance) is practiced, varies.

This begins to move into the are of “Theology”. Which simply literally means… words about God. Or the study of God. So varying theologies exist within Orthodox Christianity. Calvinist, Arminians, Charismatics, Cessationists, Eastern Orthodox, Catholic, Preterist, Ammillenialist, Sovereignty, Free Will, etc. etc.

The lines of each can cross. I am very open to varying interpretations, and seek to exist within a diverse community. However, the reality is, i also have very particular views, and the more i study and teach, the more i try to support and develop my own views. Being the primary teacher, people will simply have to accept my minor teachings a little bit more readily, and maybe agreeing with a lot… or able to give me much grace. Yet i also don’t seek to make clones, nor require people to be a one size fits all within our community.

I’m vary tolerant of opposing opions, various streams of Christian thought, and i’m not fundamental in my expression in the day to day.
However… at the same time,… i would clasify myself as strongly Orthodox, Evangelical, Conservatinve, (knowing sometimes we don’t agree on what those mean, so just ask me.)