Finding What You’re Seeking

There is a current trend in Christianity, which is that people are growing increasingly less satisfied with a professional-looking worship experience, instead opting for deeper and more meaningful goals, such as authentic community, in-depth study of Scripture, and opportunities to serve others. I think this is a healthy trend, and I believe that it is moving Christians closer to our origins.
Basically, most people realize a once-a-week worship service does not lead to a full, healthy, holistic life of faith. So people express concerns about other aspects of church life. Common concerns I have heard are: “I don’t feel like I’m connecting with others at church,” “I don’t think we are going deep enough in study,” and “I want opportunities to serve.” People want community, deep scripture study, and chances to be engaged in ministry and mission. Those are good desires! I rejoice that Christians want more of these things, and if you have expressed these concerns, I want to affirm you in that. And I want to help you see where you can find what you’re looking for:
If you are looking for COMMUNITY...
If you have said or felt like you are not getting connected at church, you are not part of the “family,” or you don’t have true friendships at Southside, then you are likely seeking community. One of the best ways to find such community is to be part of a Small Group - spend time with a handful of people who want to connect and form relationships based on a common faith. Another place to meet people is at our monthly Generations Fellowship - Generations is a time on the first Sunday of each month where we gather around tables in the Fellowship Hall to share a meal and learn more about one another.
If you want deeper SCRIPTURE STUDY...
I often hear people mention a desire for Bible study that moves beyond the surface level. That is a great desire, but sometimes the people asking for it are not going to a Sunday Morning Class – if you want some deep study, Sunday morning Bible classes are the place to find it. If you are in a class but feel that it is not going deep, speak to the teacher or class leader in private, or take part in the class conversation, to shape the discussion and contribute to greater depth. Also, I would suggest starting your own Accountability Group or Bible Study, where you can regularly be with others who also want to dig in to Scripture.
If you want to participate in MINISTRY & MISSION...
If you have realized that being the Church is about more than spending time together and studying the Bible, then hopefully you want to act on that realization by engaging in ministry and mission. At Southside, there is no shortage of opportunities to do this. Starting next Wednesday, we will have KidsHOPE each Wednesday at 6pm, where the church works with children from the community - you can serve our neighborhood by taking part! On Tuesday nights at 6, our Tutoring Ministry takes place, where you can help children learn to read and connect with them and their families. Our College Ministry provides opportunities to share your faith with students on nearby campuses. Also, on March 16 is our annual Day of Hope, an event for connecting with and serving the community. There are also many Short-Term Mission Trips to look into.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but I hope it’s a helpful start!

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