The concept of commitment is in need of revival. Loyalty doesn't seem to fit with the trend toward disposability. Our society considers pens, razors, some cameras and even relationships as things we throw away!
Unfortunately, this same attitude has affected churches. People ask, "What's in it for me?" And if the answer isn't as attractive as it once was, then there is always another church down the road. Besides, the ball game on the tube provides yet another alternative. Consumers can change channels at will.
Here at Dayspring, we intend to cut across the grain. We believe that real personal and spiritual growth only take place in an atmosphere of deep commitment. We think that most people want to commit themselves to something more meaningful than the pursuit of a better house and nicer cars. Americans ache for meaning. Many of us long to be part of something bigger than our own petty interests and temporal preoccupations.
One way in which some of our attenders express their commitment is by joining this fellowship. Some would say that this reeks of outdated formalism. That is not the idea. Our members simply want their invisible connection with this body to be made visible. We realize that many people are deeply committed to God and to His people here and yet do not seek to formally affiliate with this fellowship. That is fine. But whether formally or informally, we want to send a clear message about the value of commitment.
The meaning - What is it?
Membership is best understood as an expression of commitment to Christ and to His people. It demonstrates support and loyalty to a specific localized manifestation of the body of Christ. All Christians are members of Christ's body; some choose to make this connection visible. While people are welcome to worship in all services and to partake of the Lord's ordinances and to participate in a wide variety of activities and serve in many capacities without being formal members of this church, membership makes their commitment tangible.
The motives - Why join?
1. To wield power, to gain control, to use your vote to get your way.
2. To create a social distinction and divide the congregation into “haves” and “have-nots.” Membership is not a status symbol.
3. To be accepted by God. Membership is not a ticket to heaven.
1. To make a public statement of faith and of commitment.
2. To admit need and to request support from other members.
3. To declare dedication to a task and to join in a partnership.
4. To take a step toward greater involvement in the church.
The method - How to do it?
Our hoops to jump through are few:
1. Attend an orientation - the final class in the Next Step program. Participation provides you an opportunity to learn more about our distinctives.
2. Apply in writing - this allows you to express your belief in Christ and commitment to the church, plus it gives us an opportunity to learn about you.
3. Communicate with a staff member or elder about your commitment.