What does this church believe? Why do they do the things they do?
We love questions here at Southeast and these questions are good questions to ask. We hope you will continue to ask questions because we believe curiosity, wonder, and even doubt are intrinsically connect to an honest life of faith because when we ask questions about belief we are talking about theology.
If theology is a new word to you, it’s not as complicated as it sounds. The word theology actually comes from two words from the Greek language: theo means god and logos means words. So, theology is simply words about God.
Theology is our attempt to say what we understand about God. And, we believe the scriptures, what we call the Bible, is where we first discover the story of God intersecting with the story of humanity and where we find people, through a variety of genres exploring theology. We believe that in this ancient collection of poems, history, wisdom, parables, and letters we find people inspired by God as they wrestle with what it means to understand and follow God in their world. As we ourselves wrestle with this question, we can turn to scripture, experiencing it through it’s original context and purpose, as it then illuminates for us how to understand God and live today.
As we continue to engage the story of scripture we find it is more than simply a story of the past. Through the scriptures, we discover God revealing himself through an unfolding story of creation, love, resurrection, redemption, and restoration. This story becomes our story as we enter into relationship with God and give our lives over to God’s work in this world, which the scriptures call the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is about God’s rule, reign, and hope for this world. This hope is found throughout the scriptures, preached by Jesus, inaugurated by his resurrection, and entered into as we accept the invitation to follow the way of Jesus that reveals to us how to live lives of mercy, grace, obedience, and love.
We are discovering the way of Jesus and invite you to join us on that journey.
In a world of social media it is tempting to think theology can simply be written in a sentence or two. We’ve discovered that is simply impossible. Theology invites us on a life long journey. However, we have written the following statements to help you enter that journey with us. We have included scripture references where we discover the starting point for these statements.
A loving God created us in His image in order for us to have a relationship with Him and with people.
Unfortunately, all of us at some point have believed the lie, rejected our true image, and wandered away from the truth of God’s love.
Romans 1:25, 3:23
Because of broken relationship, Jesus lived, died, and rose from the dead to re-establish relationship with us and to give us life to the fullest, now and forever.
1 John 4:9-10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-18
Relationship with God through Jesus brings us back into God’s family where we are joined together in a community of faith, love, and accountability with our adopted brothers and sisters.
1 John 4:11-12
The Holy Spirit empowers our relationship with God and others and helps us to maximize our gifts, abilities, experiences, and personality in order to live a life of purpose.
1 Peter 4:10-11
We are called by God to bless others and help them find their way back to Him.
2 Corinthians 5:19-20
We believe that God’s desire is a world where suffering and pain don’t exist. As believers, we exist to look toward that hope but to also partner with God in sharing glimpses and creation of that hope today seeking justice, mercy, and love in this world and through our lives.
Our theology is made alive by our values, the shared ideals of who we believe we should be as a church community.
It is better to be for something rather than against something. The good news of Jesus is about bringing the world together in worship, renewal, and restoration of all things. That’s good news for everyone. Because of this value we work for the good of the community God has placed us in and the people God has placed beside us. While we may have differences with others, we will always strive to discover where we can work with others as we seek to bring God’s Kingdom to this world.
We believe that God’s Spirit works with in our lives to transform us into people who exemplify love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness in our lives. We find this list of qualities in a letter called Galatians that is a part of our Bible. It was written to one of the first church communities following the resurrection of Jesus. These qualities were exemplified by Jesus and as we desire to follow the way of Jesus, God’s Holy Spirit works in our lives to make that possible. While we may never be perfect, we daily seek God to work in our lives as we grow in our faith.
We believe that authentic faith is created from curiosity, wonder, and even doubt. We desire to be a community where you can be yourself, belong, and be challenged to grow in your faith as you develop real relationship with God and others.
Our theology and values say a lot about us as a community but this community is also a gathering of individuals. We have created our directions (with corresponding circle images) to help us all learn how to bring our theology and values together in our lives. These directions help us live out our faith as we follow Jesus. You can learn more about our directions by clicking here.