Covenant Partnership


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Grand Parkway has many attendees and guests, but the core of our community are those who have declared “I’m in!” They are committed to grow as people who “know, enjoy, and glorify God” as day-to-day demonstrations of the Gospel, Community, Mission and Blessing.

 

Purpose of Membership:

Hebrews 13:7–18 speaks to the relationship between members of a local Body and those appointed to lead it. Leaders are charged with the responsibility to “watch over the souls” of the men and women in their care. In fact, they will give an “account to God” for how they lead and care for those they shepherd. The writer of Hebrews calls those in the care of the local church to remembrance, prayer, submission to leadership, participation and unity. Consequently, both leaders and members of a local church enter into a covenant with one another to help each other fulfill their commitment so that their local Body might be a redemptive presence reflecting Jesus to their community.

 

Membership Covenants:

At Grand Parkway, membership is our mutual commitment to fully participate in our shared vision, mission and values rooted in the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Bible uses the word covenant to describe this sort of commitment. Covenant is a binding agreement where partners are committed to one another for a common purpose, which means any follower of Jesus is invited to join in this covenant. It also means membership is a two-way street; not only does church leadership have clear expectations for members, members should have clear expectations for church leadership as well.

The leadership of Grand Parkway is passionate about fully participating together in our shared mission, vision, values and Statement of Faith. We covenant with our members to lead and nurture a faith community that:

 

  • Seeks to bring glory to God in all we say and do.
  • Listens and responds to the whispers of the Holy Spirit as He redeems and restores our broken world through us, His Church.
  • Boldly proclaims and demonstrates the Good News of Jesus and His Kingdom.
  • Embraces our shared values of Gospel, Community, Mission and Blessing.
  • Develops servant leaders who are committed to help those God sends us to be who they are created to be.
  • Walks with one another through our messes; resolving conflicts in biblical, God-honoring ways.
  • Nurtures an atmosphere that both welcomes people to come as they are and, by God’s grace, helps them grow in Christlikeness.
  • Develops smaller communities where we can know and be known, love and be loved, serve and be served, and celebrate and be celebrated.
  • Equips and empowers one another to serve in alignment with our God-given design.
  • Equips and encourages members to fully participate in what God is doing in their world.
  • Seeks to be Jesus’ hands and feet to the least, the lost, and one another throughout the week.
  • Stewards all of the resources God has entrusted to us wisely, generously, transparently and joyfully for the sake of His Kingdom.

What's the catch? What do you want from me?

We ask nothing more of you than Jesus does. If you have genuinely said “yes” to following Jesus, you’ve chosen to trust and obey whenever and wherever He leads. We’re not expecting perfection; we all stumble in many ways. However, following Jesus together means reorienting our lives around Christ and His Kingdom.

As members of Grand Parkway, we choose to put down roots, participate, and grow in this faith community.

 

At Grand Parkway, members covenant to:

1. Be a participating member: A full participant passionately worships, cheerfully gives, willingly serves, agrees with our Statement of Faith, and intentionally lives our values of Gospel, Community, Mission and Blessing. Practically, this is expressed in what we call Worship +2. In addition to regular participation in Sunday worship, members find people with whom they “do life” and find their role on a Grand Parkway team.

  • Find Your People: We’re convinced that we’re made for deep relationships, so we have many environments for you to get to know others at a much deeper level: Bible Studies on campus Sunday mornings or Wednesday evenings, midweek Care Groups, Community Groups that meet twice a month in homes around the city, and Serving Groups that partner to be the hands and feet of Jesus inside and outside our church family.
  • Find Your Role: In the Kingdom of God, everyone gets to play. Everyone is saved to serve in some way. If there is an area of ministry that interests you, we would love to connect you with a ministry leader to explore serving on their team. We also offer Discovering Your DESIGN to help you identify where you're best wired to serve.

2. Be a unifying member: Be committed to mutual submission, biblical conflict resolution (Matthew 18:15–20), and being an instrument of peace. 

3. Hold preferences and desires loosely: Prefer others over self as you seek and promote what’s best for our entire church family.

4. Pray for church leadership: Commit to pray regularly for our leaders' strength, guidance, discernment, wisdom, protection and encouragement.

 

HOW do I BECOME A MEMBER?

  1. Read I Am a Church Member (provided by Grand Parkway at our Starting Point) and participate in a quarterly Starting Point class.
  2. Prayerfully consider your willingness to fully embrace Grand Parkway’s shared mission, values, faith statement and membership covenant.
  3. Complete and sign a membership covenant, including your “story,” and submit it to a Grand Parkway contact: your Starting Point Table Leader, Community Group Leader, an Elder or a Pastor.
  4. After meeting with you, your contact will then forward your membership covenant for review and approval by the Elders of Grand Parkway.
  5. Once approved, you will be notified in writing. We will welcome you into membership at a designated Sunday Worship Gathering.

 

Who is the covenant between? God and me? or Grand Parkway and me?

As followers of Jesus, we covenant with God. As His people, we covenant with one another to follow Jesus together. So the answer is: both. Our faith in Jesus binds us together with other believers, whether we live that way or choose to recognize it. Participation in Christ’s Body is not optional for followers of Jesus—it is wrapped up in our surrender to Jesus as Lord.

 

Why should I enter a membership covenant with the Grand Parkway family?

The real question is, “Why should someone be a part of a church?” Being the church means committing your life to Jesus and to others in community as well as joining with Jesus as He redeems and restores His world. Quite frankly, you can’t fully follow Jesus if you isolate yourself from His Body. Formally committing to a membership covenant is a way to declare your desire to orient your life around Jesus through the primary expression of His Kingdom: His Church.

 

Is a membership covenant Biblical?

The Bible implies church membership just as it does our common, orthodox belief of the Trinity. In Paul’s letters to the Corinthians, he indirectly assumes the importance of an active participation in the local church and everything that is involved: support, accountability, authority and correction (1 Corinthians 5; 2 Corinthians 2:5–11). This is done not out of guilt, obligation, or trying to earn anything from God, but simply because we are now the people of God, a kingdom of priests, a holy nation—the people in whom God dwells. We also find biblical precedent in Paul’s instruction to Timothy on church governance and his writings to the church in Rome. In the earliest years of the Church, one church was established in each city. Formal “membership” was accomplished by joining a persecuted group of people who were identified with Jesus by entering the waters of baptism and accepting the mission of The Great Commission. It was clear that by suffering with their brothers and sisters, they were in covenant with them. They were a part of something bigger than themselves.

 

How is Covenant Partnership important to my spiritual formation journey?

Only disciples of Jesus will accomplish his Great Commission (Matthew 28:18–20), so we are committed to developing everyday, passionate followers of Jesus. The primary place this happens is in relationships. We cannot grow without the love, encouragement and accountability of a like-minded circle of friends. The Bible also offers a functional structure to the local church for order, effectiveness, focus, and even discipline. Our commitment to shared mission, vision, values and governance by our words and actions is vital for spiritual growth. It moves us from fuzzy intentions to a dedicated intention in our faith journey. This is why we make our membership covenants among the people with whom we regularly do life. This creates a safe place for those already participating in our church family, who have yet to formally enter this covenant, to do so among friends who know and love them.

 

I'm “all in” already. Why is formal membership necessary?

We love that you love Grand Parkway and where we’re headed. Like you, we will always be dedicated to knowing, enjoying and glorifying God. However, we also want to identify those who are committed to our church family so that we know our strength. To be the people God has called us to be, covenant relationship is essential. Members commit their energy, resources and time to Grand Parkway with a greater level of commitment, shared ownership and responsibility. This membership covenant officially acknowledges followers of Jesus who truly want to make an impact at, with and through Grand Parkway. We want to acknowledge and celebrate those who have transitioned from spectators to participants.