Article: What Are Your Core Values?

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If you have worshipped with us in the past two weeks you heard me announce that we are doing work on discovering the Core Values of Community Lutheran Church. 

Our Core Values are separate from but complementary to our Mission Statement of: Real People, Inclusive God, Radical Grace, and Inspired Growth. 

Our Core Values already exist, and we are living into them, we just need to name them. Naming our Core Values will help us understand why we do what we do, as well as informing how we can best grow our faith and congregation in the future.

This past week we offered 6 different Core Values sessions during which we gathered the thoughts and input of our members who are currently worshipping in-person. Today on the home page of our website and in our weekly email, we shared an electronic version of these sessions for anyone who calls Community Lutheran Church their church home but who couldn’t attend an in-person session.  We are still collecting input and hope every member will participate. The more input we have, the better!

I anticipate being able to report back on the results of these sessions by the end of October. I’m excited to dig into the feedback that we received in writing and during the group discussions. It will take some time to go through all the submitted responses (close to 300 of them already!) and recording that information into a spreadsheet so that we can do an in-depth analysis and summarize our findings. It will be a big project, but I promise to report back as soon as possible. Stay tuned!

This important project will help to uncover and articulate the Core Values of our church family at Community Lutheran. But what about our own personal core values? We all have our own values, of course. But have you ever taken the time to name yours or to write them down?

Even Jesus indirectly named his core values. 

After his temptation in the desert in which Jesus demonstrated his divine self-control (see Luke 4:1-13), Jesus went home to Nazareth and went to the synagogue to worship with the people he had known his whole life.

It just so happened that they asked Jesus to read the scriptures that day and make commentary on them and so this is what happens…

The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: 

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Luke 4:17-19

Right there Jesus tells us what he is all about.

Preaching the good news of God’s love

Proclaiming freedom to those who feel boxed-in and captive

Bringing sight to the blind (physically and spiritually) 

Breaking the bonds of oppression for those who can’t see a way forward

And if you doubt those are Jesus’ core values listen to this…

Then Jesus rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4:20-21

Essentially Jesus told those in the synagogue that day, “This is what I am about. This is my mission, and this is at the core of who I am.”

Now get this, when Jesus died on the cross for you, me, and countless billions, he accomplished all of that in the greatest gift given to humankind.

What about you? What are your core values?

Me?

I value … 

Connection with Jesus
Caring for my family
Consistency in my relationships
Commitment to my calling

God bless,
Pr. Ben

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