We view Covenant Membership as a commitment between Christians to care for one another, do life together, and unite under a particular church leadership. In our Covenant Membership course, we spend one whole session considering 8 expectations that we have for our members. This is part one in an eight part series that will look at each of these expectations individually. Click here for more information on what we believe about Covenant Membership.
I will discover the talents and spiritual gifts that God has given me and serve in at least one ministry under the auspices of Restore.
We say that we are a "leadership based" culture at Restore. Our fundamental belief is that ministry and organizations work best when people who lead are passionate, enthusiastic, and excited about what it is that they are leading. We call people to step forward in faith, give them responsibility, and then–perhaps the most important step of leadership–give them authority commensurate with that responsibility. (It's disingenuous to tell someone that they are responsible to lead if they do not have the authority to make decisions!) The system requires at least two things to work, however. The first thing is passion. The second is gifting. We want people who are passionate and gifted in there area of ministry.
Those two things–passion and giftedness–are what protect volunteers and paid leadership alike from getting burned out serving one another in the church. Passion is what keeps us moving forward even when things get difficult. Giftedness is the ability to do the job well; we don't get discouraged because we lack the ability to do the task at hand. We don't just want to put a warm body in charge of something as if they are disposable. We don't view people as collateral damage, so long as ministry gets done! The protective measure is to ensure that someone desires to do the ministry they are leading, and that they can do it with excellence.
It doesn't stop with leaders, either. We want all of our volunteers to enjoy the ministry that they are serving in. Enthusiastic people draw people to themselves. Unenthusiastic people do just the opposite. We want to be a welcoming body of people, and that means having happy and enthusiastic servants! The best way to do that is to give our covenant members the grace to explore what they enjoy and what they are good at in the context of the church.
We also add that all of our Covenant Members should serve in at least one ministry under the auspices of Restore. We don't put that little clause in there because we think that serving in the church is somehow more important than serving elsewhere, outside of the church. Rather, we simply believe that service to one another as fellow believers in Christ is a defining mark of the local church. We care for one another's needs in any way that we are able.
All Covenant Members agree to keep an eye out to use their gifts and talents in any way that they can to serve the greater body of Restore. That's just part of what it means to do life together.