Learn more about all of the things our Yakima church offers and practices.

Simple Gatherings

When things started getting out of control in Corinth, Paul reminded them of how he started the church.

In 1 Corinthians 2, he states that he intentionally held back from using "eloquence," "human wisdom," and "wise and persuasive words," when starting and building the church there. He didn't want their walk with Jesus to be built on anything other than the power of the gospel message of Jesus.

He then goes on to describe himself in chapter 3 as a wise, master builder in how he approached building the church. Likewise, Jesus was unwilling to draw people with anything other than Himself.

In John 6, people are coming after Jesus because He provided them with food, and so in response Jesus refuses to give them physical food anymore to make sure that only those who really want to follow Jesus with everything will remain.

Are we willing to do the same in our churches? Are we willing to strip everything away if necessary to make sure people are being drawn by Jesus and Jesus alone?

simple gatherings

Daily Bible Reading and Prayer

More than anything, we want people to be lovers of the person of Jesus. Far too often in the church, we have become lovers of sermons, lovers of ministry, lovers of good books, lovers of community; but are we primarily in love with God, by Himself? A church cannot be successful or healthy if the people are not personally meeting with and enjoying God consistently. The greatest command is to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. This must be our greatest priority as leaders - to point people towards Jesus and loving Him with everything they have.

We have structured things to try to build a culture of people spending time with God every single day for themselves. Many Christians look to Sunday morning as the time where they will be "fed" by someone preaching a sermon. But the primary place that they are "fed" is through spending time with God in His word and in prayer.

Everyone Discipled Disciples Others

Another reason we want the entry point to joining our church to be in the context of a small, intimate, intentional group of believers is so that there is no room to hide. Our world, influenced by social media, is becoming more and more about looking like we've got it all together even while things are falling apart. Without intentionality, we will do the same thing in the church, pretending to be free of sin while our soul is dying inside. But the only way we can keep up this charade is if we keep people at a safe distance. The minute things get up close and personal, the real stuff starts spilling out.
Discipleship is hard and messy.
Our temptation in the church has been to replace discipleship with various other programs. If there is a married couple struggling, we might often suggest that they read a book, enroll in a marriage class, or go on a retreat. But what they need the most is older couples who love Jesus to come alongside of them and to walk with them through life's challenges.
Jesus modeled discipleship to His twelve, and He told them to go and do likewise in Matthew 28. You cannot be discipled without discipling others.

everyone discipled
multiplication of leaders

Multiplication of Leaders

When you have too many kids and not enough parents, you end up with orphanages. In orphanages, kids usually don't receive the love and care that they need to grow in emotional, physical, and spiritual health. We want to make sure the church functions like a family rather than an orphanage. In order to ensure this, we must prioritize leadership development (developing new spiritual parents). Jesus consistently displayed in His life that the disciples were His priority of the crowds. He knew that the long term health of the church was dependent on raising up new leaders. Yet, in the church today, we often make the mistake of prioritizing the crowds over the small group of leaders in training. When we do that, we become more and more of an orphanage rather than a family.

Everyone Exercises Spiritual Gifts

Paul said "to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good" (1 Corinthians 12:7). He then goes on to list many different types of gifts that the Spirit gives to believers for the sake of the body. Next, he explains how every part of the body is needed, and that we must be careful to not start developing a mindset that some gifts are more necessary than others. So each believer has the Spirit and is needed in the body, but is that truly how we function in the church? Does every single believer in a church realize that they are just as needed and important as anyone else in the church? Or do they tend to think that the preacher and the worship leader are more important and needed?

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Multiplication of Churches

So, many churches begin small, relational, discipleship-focused, and healthy, but they aren't able to maintain those characteristics as numeric growth happens. Before they know it, they have become more and more of a machine rather than a healthy family. Meeting in homes sounds great, but what happens as the church grows? How does a church adapt as the Lord adds to their number? One word: Multiplication.

The true fruit of an apple tree isn't apples, but rather more apple trees. The true fruit of a strong leader is not followers, but more strong leaders. The true fruit of a healthy church is not congregants, but more healthy churches. God has designed the world to be one that reproduces and multiplies. The apple trees that can't multiply are ones that are genetically modified. We have too many GMO churches and not enough reproducing churches.

A Servant's Heart

We also see in the scriptures how Paul made a choice to work hard and supply the needs of himself and his companions (Acts 20: 33-35, Acts 18:1-4). In 2 Thessalonians 3:8, Paul says why he did this because he did not want to be a burden to any of them. We leaders had intentionally decided to have only voluntary leaders. We feel like we do not want to serve for a paycheck. This will distract us and we may serve the people for wrong reasons. 100% of the contribution will be given away to local and international. missions.

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mission trips

Missions - Reaching Out

Jesus's life was not about career, family, money, worldly success, traveling, etc. Though He dealt with those things, ultimately He was sent by God to the earth solely for the purpose of the mission of God.

In John 17:18, Jesus speaks of the disciples in His prayer to God, saying, "As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world." In verse 20, He makes clear that He is not just praying for the twelve disciples, but rather for all who will eventually believe in Him. So according to Jesus, our purpose on the earth is the same as His: we've been sent. Our life and everything in it is for the purpose of the mission of God. Yet, are we living like that? Is that the expectation in our churches? Or do we lower the bar?

We are all missionaries. As a church, structurally we try to fight the temptation to create ministries or programs or events that make things feel more like a country club than a training ground.

Sharing by Taking Care of Those Among Us

According to Paul, non-believers are marked by a focus on earthly things and Christians are marked by eagerly awaiting Jesus because their citizenship is in Heaven (Philippians 3:19-20). Throughout the New Testament, when we see Christians, we see people who are so excited about their hope of eternal life with God on the New Earth that they care very little about their possessions and life here. Their lives are "hidden with Christ in God" (Col 3:3). We should hold things so loosely in light of this. Also our love for each other in Jesus should be so deep that "if one part (of the body) suffers, every part suffers with it" (1 Corinthians 12:26). Though the early Christians were marked by their love for one another, that's unfortunately not usually the marker of Christians today.

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Our Church

If you had no history or exposure to the church at all (other than reading the New Testament), what would you expect to see if someone invited you to a gathering of a church? We've thought about this question a lot. Based on the more than 59 "one another" commands in the New Testament, we would expect to see a lot of love between Christians when they gather.

Based on the way Paul describes the church in 1 Corinthians and Ephesians, we would expect to see various people contributing their spiritual gifts and interacting together.

We'd picture people living like a true family inside and outside of the gathering. We'd expect to see a lot of smiling, a lot of hugging, a lot of crying together, a lot of meals shared, and a lot of life connection throughout the week.

We wouldn't picture a huge auditorium or rows or a stage or everyone being quiet while just a few people lead. We're not saying it's wrong to do this, but the question is, if our structures undermine or contribute towards God's commands in the Scripture, which are emphasized and repeated?

And if there are more than 50 "one another" commands that call us to radical, intimate, deep love for each other, why would the thing we call "church" be something where we don't interact or know each other?