Thanks for listening in to this week’s unSeminary podcast. I’m excited to have Lead Pastor Brent Purvis with us from Cascade Hills Church in Georgia.
Cascade Hills Church was started by Brent’s father, Bill, after a dramatic near death experience caused him to give his life to Christ. Cascade Hills has always been a church for the unchurched and Brent is with us to share how this passion for their mission guides every decision that they make.
- Let the gospel out. // Churches may say that they are for the unchurched person, but in some ways the pandemic has revealed what really is driving them. There is a lot of pressure on churches today and some have been more motivated by their popularity or from their pocketbooks being threatened, As churches in Georgia started reopening, Cascade Hills Church began asking themselves, is the best way to reach unchurched people during this time by having fifteen services with social distancing? The last thing Brent wanted was for churched people to be able to get into a service while an unchurched person couldn’t. After all, the church is not about people getting into a building; it’s about the gospel of Jesus Christ getting out. So instead Cascade Hills leaned heavily into using online streamed messages where upwards of 80,000 people have been tuning in. This is just one example of how the mission to be a church for the unchurched is driving each and every decision Cascade Hills makes.
- Celebrate what a win is. // At Cascade Hills their mission was driven deep even before COVID. Everything the church did had an underlying motive of reaching the unchurched. Sharing stories of life change is a big way that Cascade Hills celebrates wins. In all of these stories you can see how it points back to the church’s mission: how an unchurched person was invited to church, came to know Christ, and experienced life change. Share stories of life change again and again to model to your church what it looks like to live on mission, keep spreading the gospel, and invite unchurched people to have a relationship with God.
- External keys and internal keys. // If you’re going to go somewhere, you need a map. Cascade Hills wants to create fully devoted followers of Christ out of irreligious people. They know the unchurched person needs to find God but once they do, how do they become a fully devoted follower? Knowing they needed to create a map for this process, Cascade Hills came up with external keys that helped create a pathway for people who were starting their journey with God. They also created internal keys to help the church make decisions with the mission in mind. To see examples of these external and internal keys download this document from Cascade Hills.
- Focus on God’s vision for your church. // No matter what your mission and vision are, remember that vision leaks. Church leaders are spread thin with all of the responsibilities that need to be done and can become distracted from the path God first called them to. Vision needs to be over-communicated in order for it to stay crystal clear. Stay focused on what’s wildly important so that passion doesn’t fade.
- Think global church. // Online church is a venue without walls that God has opened up for such a time as this. Pay attention to how you can reach the unchurched through this global church venue. How can you transfer your ministries to a church without walls? What do life groups and serving look like? God didn’t take away our spiritual gifts because the church doors were closed. We need to use them right where we are. Don’t treat online church as a spare tire that will go away when things get back to “normal”. Think about how you can use digital services to reach the unchurched and serve the global church.
You can learn more about Cascade Hills Church at their website www.cascadehills.com.
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