Dear First Baptist family:
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the word “unbounded.” It’s an unusual word, not one that ordinarily pops up in our day-to-day conversations, but it’s a word worth chewing on. It means “having or appearing to have no limits.” Synonyms include boundless, limitless, unrestrained, unrestricted, unconstrained, immeasurable, endless, everlasting, infinite, inexhaustible, and abundant.
If you have been worshipping virtually with us this January, you’ll know that we have begun exploring this verbal concept during each week’s sermon. And what I have discovered while chewing on this word is that it is the perfect word to describe the power of the Holy Spirit at work in Jesus, just as we find told in the pages of the Gospel of Luke.
It’s also a word that perfectly describes our identity, First Baptist Church. Because we are a community that values “faith unbounded.” If you drive by the church sometime soon, you’ll notice that we have some new signage that helps future guests to navigate our facility with ease. You will see there is a welcome banner hanging near the double glass door entrance that has this very phrase emblazoned on it: “faith unbounded.”
Why, you may ask?
Faith unbounded means we value each individual questioning, doubting, and learning through reflection instead of prescribing a long list of beliefs, because we believe that questions and doubts are the very definition of cultivating a life of faith.
Faith unbounded means we are more interested in helping you learn how to ask good questions, instead of telling you what specifically you must believe.
Faith unbounded looks like us choosing to covenant together across the lines that our culture tells us should divide us, believing that our common faith in Christ Jesus unites us over all else.
Faith unbounded means we value being a covenant community which creates stability amidst our diversity, and which becomes a sounding board as we discern together what it means to be faithful to God in this life.
Faith unbounded means that we believe that our faith compels us to do more than merely show up for worship for one hour each Sunday. Instead, our faith compels us to be deeply invested in our local community, paying close attention to and participating in serving the needs of our neighbors.
After all, if unbounded is the perfect word to describe the power of the Holy Spirit at work in Jesus, is it not also the perfect word to describe the power of the Holy Spirit at work in and among us? May it be so. And may we have the courage to be and to do all that God is calling us to.
With Great Hope,