Community

Enjoying God

We might think often of obeying God and knowing him and even trusting and loving him. But how often do we think of our relationship with God in terms of joy and happiness? What does it mean to “enjoy God”? If we are saved by him and belong to him and obey him, what difference does it make if we enjoy him? Our thoughts about God are critical to our faith and relationship with him, but what about our feelings toward him? Is it a modern self-help fascination to want to have happy feelings toward God—or is it a firm promise of the Scriptures and the goal of our union with Christ? 

This Sunday, we’ll start a new series in our gatherings and groups: Enjoying God.

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The Westminster Shorter Catechism begins with this Q&A: What is the chief end of man? “The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” 

Or as author John Piper has written: “The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying him forever.” 

Enjoying God is one thing we can do here and now, regardless of circumstances, regardless of our future, that has an eternal impact on our own souls, and improves our lives on earth. Enjoying God is what we were made for. 

The point of enjoying God is not what we get from it—less sin, more strength, a better life, etc. The point of enjoying God is simply enjoying God—he is the source of true, lasting joy. We find joy when we find him. 

How Do We Enjoy God? 

Our joy in God increases as we come to know him as he is (his character, attributes, and ways) and enter his presence in prayer. When we do these two things, the result will be enjoying God in everyday life

The three important elements of this series are: 

(1) Knowing God’s Character & Attributes, 
(2) Cultivating a Prayerful Life, and (the result)
(3) Enjoying God in Everyday Life 

Enjoying God’s Character & Attributes

The majority of this sermon series and community group study is a sustained meditation on God’s character and attributes. Each week (after the introductory sermon), we’ll focus on an aspect of God’s character (an attribute) so that we enjoy him as he is. A **highly-tentative** schedule is: 

June 9: Enjoying God in Everyday Life (Pentecost Sunday)
June 16: Enjoying God the Trinity (Trinity Sunday) 
June 23: Enjoying God Most Beautiful
June 30: Enjoying God Most Loving 

July 7: Enjoying God Most Merciful
July 14: Enjoying God Most Just
July 21: Enjoying God Most Faithful
July 28: Enjoying God Most Powerful 

Aug 4: Enjoying God Most Wise
Aug 11: Enjoying God through Suffering

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If you are a Trinity member: This summer is a great opportunity to grow in your knowledge, experience, and enjoyment of God! Consider a commitment to join us for all ten weeks (in the gathering or, if you’re serving in Trinity Kids or traveling, by following the sermon page as well).

If you are considering a visit to Trinity: This is a great time to visit us! We would love to have you. If you have any questions, would like to talk with a pastor or leader, or want to let us know ahead of time that you’ll be visiting… you can contact us here.

See you Sunday!
JSL

Trinity Fall Festival

Trinity Church invites you to join us for our first Fall Festival at Shryock's Farm & Corn Maze!

Join us starting at 5:00pm on October 20th for the state’s largest corn maze, the Fun Barn for kids, hay rides, and a bonfire reserved from 7-9pm. (Shryock’s Farm is located at 2927 County Rd 253, Columbia, MO 65202.)

Admission is $7 per person; please let us know if you would like to have Trinity cover your cost of admission.

Rain or shine! (And yes, it’s MU Homecoming weekend, so the farm will be less crowded!)

Trinity Launch in Pictures!

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Thank You!

A big, heartfelt Thank You to everyone who worshipped with us, prayed for us, encouraged us, and supported us financially this past weekend! We had a beautiful and powerful public launch gathering.

We had 121 people gather with us for this big Sunday! (80 in our worship gathering and 41 in Trinity Kids—yes, that's a lot of children!)

There was a real Spirit of joy and celebration among us, and we know that this is just the beginning. We were blessed to minister to many non-church-attending neighbors, coworkers, and friends, and also welcomed many friends and family members who have supported us along the way. We are not done church planting, but this is a big step towards becoming a healthy, self-sustaining local congregation (that plants other churches). The best is yet to come.

What a Sunday! Enjoy the pictures!

Jeremy & Co.

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Outdoor Movie Night (Rescheduled)

Our first Outdoor Movie Night (May 25) was rained out, but don't worry: We have rescheduled it for this Friday night (June 1).

We will gather at Louisville Park (806 Louisville Drive) in West Columbia at 8:00pm to watch the film Zootopia. Bring your own blankets, chairs, and snacks. Water and popsicles will be provided, and everything is free.

Our summer Outdoor Movie series schedule:

Friday, June 1, Zootopia
Friday, June 29, Frozen
Friday, July 27, Inside Out
Friday, Aug 24, movie TBD
Friday, Sept 28, movie TBD

 

We're Moving!

Hey friends,

I’m excited to share that beginning January 21st, we will begin meeting Sundays at 10am at Columbia Independent School.

New Time, New Place

This is a change for us in two ways: First, we are moving from evening gatherings to morning gatherings. Second, we are from our home and the event center to gathering every week at Columbia Independent School (CIS).

This Sunday, January 21, we will hold a Preview Gathering—a full worship service where we as a new church family can get a glimpse of the future.

Now, this doesn’t mean that we are launching full worship gatherings every week. We will continue to hold Preview Gatherings once per month, and on the other Sundays, we’ll gather at the same time and place for fellowship, Bible study, and prayer. TrinityKids ministry will be available every Sunday.

Our New Home

There are a few reasons why we are excited about CIS. First, the location (1801 North Stadium Boulevard) is more centrally located, so that it’s more convenient for our folks coming from downtown or the University campus. It’s also accessible to North Columbia, which we are excited about, and more convenient for our families that live outside the city.

Second, the space is ideal. We will be meeting in the Performing Arts Room, which is set up with a stage, sound system, and up to 200 chairs. This means we’ll have minimal setup and teardown, and we’ll have a space that can feel small but also accommodate growth in the coming years.

Lastly, the administration and staff of CIS is not just allowing us to use their space, but have actively made it easy for us to make the building our Sunday home. We are exceedingly thankful to CIS’s leaders for making their space available and hospitable to us.

A New Season

It has been a wonderful six months gathering in our home. We will never forget this season. It has been one of the joys of our lifetimes to gather with ten, fifteen, or twenty-five people each Sunday night in our living room.

We have seen people who had no church home find a place to belong. We have seen strangers become friends. We have seen a group of individuals with little else in common besides Christ become a true spiritual family.

All of that will continue at Columbia Independent! We hope to always feel like a living room church, even when we don’t fit in a living room any more. Our mission is to cultivate Christ centered community. And our move to Sunday mornings at CIS will enable us to be more fruitful together in fulfilling that mission.

We hope to see you this Sunday!

Pastor Jeremy 

Trinity Update: Winter 2017

Season’s Greetings, Friends!

It’s been about six weeks since our last update, and a lot has happened! In fact, we are seeking 31 people to pray for us one day each in December—more on that at the end. 

Fall Update

We held our first public preview gatherings on October 15th and November 12th. Both services were an absolute joy: We had a wonderful time of worship, prayer, and fellowship, truly sensing the Spirit’s power as we gathered. Each gathering served about 35 adults and 15 kids, with first-time visitors at each. Praise the Lord! Throughout the past two months, we’ve been reading and discussing revival narratives in the Old Testament and praying that God would do a new work among us for his glory in this place.

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December: Making Room

So, what’s next for us at Trinity? As you know, this Sunday starts the Advent season—a time of prayerfully making room for Christ in our hearts, preparing for the celebration of Christmas. At Trinity, it is also a time of making room for more people to experience Christ among and through us. Our final preview gathering of 2017 will be on Sunday evening, December 10th. Will you pray that we would continue to experience joy and power in worship and minister to new guests and families?

The "Magic Tree" is lit every year and thousands of people from across Missouri come to see it. It is located across the street from where our Preview Gatherings meet.

The "Magic Tree" is lit every year and thousands of people from across Missouri come to see it. It is located across the street from where our Preview Gatherings meet.

Prayer Requests

Speaking of prayer requests, we have several big ones. We have experienced enough growth to need to move into a larger meeting space in January… but we don’t yet have a lease secured. We have a few options, but nothing yet has fit our vision and budget. Please pray for a space! Similarly, we have healthy internal giving coming in now, and our external funding has been strong all year. But we need a significant funding boost in the next two months to be able to afford a rental space and prepare to launch.

So, I really sound like a church planter. (Stop me if you’ve heard this one before…) We need people, money, and meeting space!

We have felt the strong joy and presence of God through every step of this journey, and this is most likely the most significant set of challenges or barriers we have faced to date. Where will we meet next month? How will we make budget? How can we make room to faithfully reach people?

Surely the Lord will provide. Through our prayer and submission to him, we will be changed in the process. And he will receive all praise and glory. This is how he works! So we are asking you to join us in this season of prayer and longing.

Commit to a Day of Prayer?

In light of our need and the opportunity for God’s glory before us, we would like to secure at least one person praying for us each day of December. We’re seeking 31 one-day prayer warriors!

If you would enjoy committing to a day of prayer for Trinity (I mean, you can still go to work and pray a few times as you are able), will you reply by email to me at jeremy@trinitymo.org? Give us a day or two that you can be praying for us, and we’ll put you down for a specific date.

Pray that the Lord would give grace, strength, and wisdom to our leaders. Pray that he would provide for our every need—space, people, funding. Pray that we would all be changed along the way.

Much love and grace,
Jeremy, Jessie, and the Team

How Do We Make Disciples? (Part One)

When discussing discipleship, many things may come to mind—a class, a program, a Bible study, family worship, one-on-one mentoring, a core set of doctrines, or an early developmental stage.

At Trinity, we believe discipleship is the work of the church. Jesus left his disciples with this command:

Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you to the very end of the age. (Matthew 28:19-20)

We think discipleship is not as difficult as the church has often made it to be, and there are no magic bullets to guarantee discipleship. Discipleship is neither a duty to perform nor a puzzle to solve. Before we can discuss how we make disciples, we have to define the process and the goal. 

Here’s how we define it: 

Discipleship is the life-giving, grace-filled process of being with Christ and becoming like him together.

First, discipleship will be life-giving if it is truly centered on Jesus Christ.

He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Our groups should primarily be marked by life and not stagnation, joy and not defeat, encouragement and not gossip. In other words, discipleship must be “gospel centered”—ministry rooted in Jesus and his gospel.  

Second, discipleship is grace-filled. 

We recognize that spiritual transformation comes through God’s grace, not simply our effort. God’s grace enables us to want to be with Christ and become like him (Titus 2:11-13). We will fail frequently, but his grace sustains us along the way.

Third, discipleship is a process.

It’s not a theory, a class, a program, or a time of the week. Similar to a worldview, a process—a new way of living, with new habits and routines—must be produced if we are to life like Christ and as his salt and light in the world.

Fourth, discipleship is a process of being with Christ.

It is not a primarily way of doing more for him or the church. The first invitation of discipleship is not to growth or change or even obedience; it is simply to come to Jesus. The words of Matthew 11:28-30 demonstrate our Lord’s heart for his disciples:

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Fifth, discipleship is a way of becoming like him.

Once we have spent time in the presence of the King, we will gradually become more like him. Our growth in Christlikeness produces a real change, and our obedience becomes an internal desire rather than an external compulsion. We become what we behold, according to Paul in 2 Corinthians 3:18.

And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. 

Lastly, discipleship happens together.

Our being and becoming like Christ is not an individual pursuit. It is deeply personal, yet it does not happen primarily in a “Jesus and me” context. Instead, the best possible place of spiritual transformation is the local church—and most specifically, a small, regular, committed group of believers pursuing the same end.

 

If we want to find a blueprint for discipleship, we must begin where all true discipleship should begin, by looking at the earthly life and ministry of Jesus.

Stay tuned for Part Two! 

 

This post is an excerpt from the forthcoming ebook, Life-Giving Groups, by Jeremy Linneman. It releases from Sojourn Network on October 25, 2017.