With Jesus Christ as our foundation (1 Cor 3:11), together we will passionately pursue our mission through our foundational priorities which we pray will lead to mature disciples of Jesus Christ who are defined by our foundational intentions.
These five priorities are how we seek to fulifll our mission.
Preaching: That takes God at His word (Hebrews 4:12-13)
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account. Hebrews 4:12-13 [ESV]
We believe God’s Word has something transforming to say to you every time you open it. We believe it shows us who God is, who we are and how we ought to live in response to Him and what he has done for us in Jesus. We believe in preaching that points to salvation not self-help, and heart transformation not behaviour modification. Our aim in preaching is to seek to explain the meaning of the text, expose the reality of our hearts and exhort everyone to respond in repentant reliance upon God.
Prayer: That trusts in God's promises and provision (Jeremiah 33:3)
Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. Jeremiah 33:3 [ESV]
We believe that apart from prayer we can do nothing that is of any eternal value. We believe that God has given us prayer as His means of drawing near to Him, depending upon Him and having our lives directed by Him. We believe that prayer is a powerful thing that God uses to achieve His purposes in us first and then through us and for us after that.
Forms this will take in the life of Harvest Ayr are…
Pre-service prayer (Sundays @9:30am)
Prayer Nights (First Friday of the month in)
Weeks of prayer (twice a year: January & August)
As well as prayer in services and in small groups.
Discipleship: That trains hearts to live for God's glory (Hebrews 10:24-25)
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. Hebrews 10:24-25 [ESV]
We believe that God’s purpose for the church is to make disciples by which we mean people who follow Jesus with all their heart and soul. We believe that the priority of the church should be to serve the growth of people in their knowledge of God, godly character and the kind of life that magnifies God’s worth. We believe that disciple-making happens best in community and that it is in the community of the local church that God seeks to grow us and calls us to serve.
Our approach to disciple making is… well actually we want everything we do to be about making disciples. When it comes to the content of our services, the purpose of our ministries, the conversations we have, how we serve with one another, how we serve with one another and everything else we can think of we want to ask the question…how will this make disciples? How will this train hearts to live for God’s glory?
A little bit more about discipleship at Harvest Ayr.
The role of Small Groups in your walk with Jesus:
- Development place of walk with Christ
- Primary place of pastoral care
- Fostering encouragement
- Encouraging transparency
- Nurturing humility
Evangelism: That talks clearly and courageously about Jesus (2 Timothy 1:8)
Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God... 2 Timothy 1:8 [ESV]
We believe that our lives matter most when we make much of Jesus. We believe that one of the primary ways that we make much of Him is by proclaiming the message of the Gospel. We believe that every believer has the opportunity and privilege to tell others about Jesus and what he has done for them. We believe that bold evangelism is one of our best expressions of worship.
Our approach to evangelism is:
Providing opportunities to engage the local community
Pursuing opportunities for service (mercy ministry in particular)
Worship: That turns hearts towards Jesus (John 4:23-24)
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth. John 4:23-24 [ESV]
We believe that our highest calling is to worship God and our biggest issues arise from our worship of things other than God. We believe that God has made worship (and sung worship in particular) a means of taking our distracted hearts and directing them towards Him. We believe that worship simultaneously needs to stand on what is true and stir our hearts to deeper affection for Jesus. Our approach to worship is content driven, contemporary in style with the goal of compelling people to set their hearts on Jesus.
These three intentions are the desired fruit of our mission.
Disciples who increasingly.....
Delight in Jesus
A healthy local church longs for you to increasingly delight in the Lord (Psalm 37:4). It believes that a commitment to gathering with God’s people Sunday by Sunday is fuel to your delighting in the Lord. It also wants to be a place that encourages you to be more than a Sunday Christian but rather that Sunday would also serve as an overflow of your growing delight in the Lord across the rest of the week.
How does that work?
Personal Praise (Psalm 145:1-3; Hebrews 13:15)
Corporate Worship (Psalm 95:1-11; Ephesians 5:18-19)
Devote to Jesus
A healthy local church longs for you to grow in your devotion to God. This is more than the commitment of duty but a growing capacity for adoration and affection. It believes that God’s design for you is to have a closeness to Him. The local church should be a place where you get to express His worth to you.
How does that work?
Abide in Christ (John 15:5-7; 1 John 2:6)
Walk in Community (Acts 2:44-46; Hebrews 10:23-25)
Display of Jesus
A healthy local church longs for your life, and our life together as a church, to exist as a display of God’s glory. Things that put that on display are your readiness to share Jesus and your willingness to serve Jesus. As you grow in godly character and infuse your conversations with Gospel content you develop in your ability to live out the calling of the Great Commission.
How does that work?
Love Freely (John 13:34-35; Ephesians 5:2)
Serve Sacrificially (Ephesians 2:10; Colossians 3:23-24)
Give Generously (Deuteronomy 15:10; 2 Corinthians 9:6-15)
Proclaim Openly (Mark 16:15; Romans 1:16)