The following are the notes from Ps. Luke’s address at Hope Valley’s 30 Years of Hope Gala Dinner.
WHERE WE ARE
I have witnessed the faithfulness of God toward His church for most of the 30 years we are celebrating tonight.
Over the last few years God has been so kind and so gracious to our Church and we have seen miraculous things taking place. In the last 3 years our church went form serving around 60 people for 2 hrs a week to being a Sunday – Friday Church that now reaches a growing number in excess of 400 people a week. This represents families in our Playgroup, our Community Centre, our Cessnock Sisterhood, Youth, Young Adults, Over Fifties and Life Groups, as well as our Creative Academy which now has secured over 123 enrolments since the start of this year. We now lease 2 additional commercial premises in the centre of our CBD and employ 8 part time staff.
A lot has happened in just a few short years, but we believe this really is just the beginning.
WHO WE ARE
We believe that if we are faithful to the vision God has given this church, He will continue to build it.
This is our God given vision – Hope Valley is an inclusive Christ centred community participating in God’s plan to meet the immediate and eternal needs of Cessnock and Beyond.
CHURCH – We still believe that the Church was, is, and always will be, God’s one and only plan to redeem the world. (redeem – to take a broken world and put it back together)
INCLUSIVE – We make room – Whomever you are, we will do whatever it takes to include you. We work hard so that the displaced, the marginalised, the broken and the lost can find a place to belong AND to PARTICIPATE in the greatest work that they will ever do.
CHRIST CENTRED – Jesus is at the centre of all that we do and all that we do is all about revealing Jesus.
COMMUNITY – Does it build deep, authentic and restorative community? We ask this question of everything we do. We want to push against the individualistic, isolationist culture that is growing in our world today. We want to talk to you, face to face, voice to voice, heart to heart.
PARTICIPATING – We are a participatory church. We believe that the church needs you, and that you are called to serve.
IMMEDIATE and ETERNAL NEEDS – We believe that God’s plan for His church is actually very simple…”meet needs”
CESSNOCK and BEYOND – leads to . . .
WHERE ARE WE GOING?
When you have the privilege to participate in God’s one and only rescue plan for humanity, the church, you can easily get excited about what God has around the corner. One of our church’s key verses is
Roams 8:15 This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next?”