Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Write the Vision!

And then God answered: "Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run. This vision-message is a witness pointing to what's coming. It aches for the coming—it can hardly wait! And it doesn't lie. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It's on its way. It will come right on time.
(Habakkuk 2:2,3 - The Message)



VISION: Church In The Now was originally founded on a concept taken from Psalms 2:8 in the KJV, which says: “Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.”
More recent and better translations say “Ask of Me and I will give you the nations…”, but CITN embraced the more archaic “heathen” for the simple reason that this house was/is to be a place of human recovery for those who have not been reached by the conventional church…those who have been overlooked…those who have slipped through the cracks. Jesus gave an illustration about the king who told his stewards to go into the streets and compel the unwanted ones to come to his banquet after the original invitees has declined his invitation, and CITN has answered the call to become those stewards carrying out that mission.












The rest of the verse says “…and the uttermost parts of the earth for your possession”, which speaks to the bigger vision of being an international church with a global pulpit. CITN’s official motto, REAL PEOPLE EXPERIENCING THE REAL GOD IN THE REAL WORLD embodies the full spectrum of the verse’s meaning, and continues to become a reality for this community of truth-seeking believers...this non-traditional, inter-denominational, multi-cultural embassy of Christ.


MISSION: The mission of Church In The Now is to be salt and light…to make a positive impact on the Metropolitan Atlanta area first, by creating a relevant, city-wide family center in which all are welcome…a place where all individuals and families can grow and flourish in their own faith, and discover God's unique plan and purpose for their lives.


CITN is also committed to making a positive impact on the world by continuing to serve as a world-wide Christian outreach center helping people in other nations experience the same thing. The essence of this mission is captured in these words:
"Here's another way to put it: You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We're going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I'm going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I'm putting you on a light stand.

Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.”
(Matthew 5:14-16, The Message)



MISSION: The mission of Church In The Now is to be salt and light…to make a positive impact on the Metropolitan Atlanta area first, by creating a relevant, city-wide family center in which all are welcome…a place where all individuals and families can grow and flourish in their own faith, and discover God's unique plan and purpose for their lives.



GOALS: 1. To maximize the physical campus and facilities to their full potential, creating an accessible event and convention center for the Metropolitan Atlanta area.

2. To reach every age group with the Gospel, presented in an unconventional and organic way, and to realize the possibility of reaching the fullness of the Church’s demographic through teaching, books, CD’s, DVD’s Schools of the Bible, missions, and every other specialized ministry outreach offered by the church.

3. To be involved in community ministries that fulfill the Gospel in tangible ways…to help the homeless and indigent, the elderly, at-risk youth, battered women and women with crisis pregnancies, families in crisis, and to have a relevant impact on problems such as crime, poverty, drug abuse and youth violence.














4. To partner with the educational system in building a network that will enhance the culture of learning, and make more educational options available for local youth.


5. To explore the potential of media in order to find ways in which the Gospel may be presented in new and untapped venues.


6. To become a Ministry of Reconciliation in every sense of the word.


7. To fulfill the prophecy spoken over CITN many years ago that this church would do something that has never been done before, for which there is no model or precedent, and to continue to discover every day what that is, and what it can be.


16 comments:

karl cobos said...

Just wanted you to know that I'm here now, and that I'm reading. Have a wonderful Wednesday (hmm, I bet Bernadette Peters would have a wonderful time "weeding what I just wote") lol

Karl Cobos said...

Thanks for writing down what you see. It helps us to see it as we run along the way.
The vision of what's coming. Patience...yes. Like waiting for a meteorite to shoot across the sky, or a fish to take the bait, maybe a greenlight at a drag race...wait for it...wait for it...BAM!

God WANTS to give the heathen and the nations to SOMEBODY...I guess the one that asks receives. Imagine God as an auctioneer, only that the highest bidder is the one who just really jumps up and asks first and the loudest (I'll take 'em, I'll take 'em...over here!)...going once...twice...GIVEN!!

Also like what's written in the verse..."Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.”

I've made you salt...BE SALT.
I've made you light...BE LIGHT.
I've made you a city...SO SHINE.

I've put you on a hilltop...people will come...the gates are open.
The main event is inside.

Great goal o'mighty!

#7 ...that this church would do something that has never been done before... (maybe we're already doing some of those things?)

I definitely have some visions and goals I need to write down and make plain...always good.

Anonymous said...

Amen!

Anonymous said...

I am very intrigued by numbers...on a very deep level I understand that the entire universe operates in the divine order brought by numbers just as computers are ultimately controlled just by ones and zeros...that translates in my mind to light and darkness...the culmination of all color and the absence of all color...both of which mysteriously reside in totality in God...
Anyway, I know that Karl revealed a few years ago the significance of CITN being located on Iris Drive and the connection to Vision...this morning I see the significance in the address...1877.
1 is the unity that exists in all that is God (no separation, no awareness of nakedness)...
8 is the new beginning that overwhelmingly is included in everyone's testimony about the transformation that occurs in all that embrace this ministry...
and of course the double 7's embrace the double dose of God (if that is even possible) that we all receive as we enter and worship in the NOW...
Brings supernatural peace to my Spirit as I connect in the Spirit to the CITN community...my expectation and anticipation of what is happening NOW (thank you Flip Wilson) at this time is heightened even further but I no longer feel any amount of overwhelm...it just is...it is life-giving...it is right (or left!?)...it is truth...
Very cool...

River said...

Amen!!! So Glad our paths did cross. Going from church to church or should I say religious mindset to religious mindset. I had all but given up on church. I told my husband the day before we joined that if I ever leave I would not join another church. I am so tired of all the religious games that christians play. Church was not meant to be a click group, a pick up a date, tear each other apart because they don't see the Father as you do. I am happy We have been enlightened to experience God for who He is and not who we want Him to be.
Thank you for showing me that no matter what God really does love me.
It's so great to be a part of a church who gets me and even still loves me for who I am not what my past was.

word veb - goodu - good you

Good job faithful servant!!!

Erik said...

Karl, excellent comment. I understand that auction.

Generosity is one of the sexiest things of The Universe.

Bishop, you have attracted excellent 'Heathen". Thank you for this Nexus. This is a diamond mine, with a treasure unmatched. Each gem unique, and one in particular.

Conyers, GA? Of course and 'Who knew?' Generous open house that shines and reconciles across the universe. -- Wonderful.

This is the playground of the gods.

karl cobos said...

God of This City...was the song that was playing when I came here tonight

Erik said...

Bishop, Thanks for the service tonight, I really needed it.

Had a disappointing business day, when I was ITB, felt the anointing, and everything changed. It just got better from there.

On the drive back from Birmingham, I looked forward to the service, believing a change was imminent,and it is.

BrendaY said...

Powerful statements that you just wrote and I am so happy that God has allowed me to be a part of this great move. I didn't have to read about it in the history books but I'm making the history that my great-grandkids will experience in future years.

I have so been inspired by your teachings of the gospel and I have shared the message every chance I get. I walk them out daily and people want to know where the radiance is coming from, must be a new man that say. Well, I tell them its not a new man but THE MAN which gives me the oppotunity to plug in CITN.

When you were writing the gospels and posting them on the blog I couldn't wait to read the next few verses and would get upset when you would cut off and I had to wait until the next posting, now I have them and can read until my heart is content. I really took to heart the message on shame and how we dishonor Jesus and what he did on that cross by being weighed down with guilt and shame. I never looked at it that way but I am so in agreement. As I began my journey of speaking and ministering to hurting women I shall be able to impart those words to them.

Karl Cobos said...

Hey bishop, thought this was really good about vision and creating...had to share. It's from Jeremy Lopez website Identity Network

Hidden Potential in Dark Places
by Kim Miller

The word 'darkness' is one, that for most of as believers, brings to mind ideas of wilderness places and evil abodes. But the Holy Spirit has been placing a much different emphasis on this word to me of late. He has been talking to me about the potential in darkness to bring forth great releases of creativity.

This concept first came to my attention through reading a number of biographies of famous authors of children's books. It began when I read that C.S. Lewis had written his delightfully profound Chronicles of Narnia series at what he described as one of the darkest seasons in his life. That was just the beginning. E.B. White, author of Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, said that he actually would anticipate days when he felt especially melancholy, for it was in that state of mind that he found himself to be at his best both productively and creatively. L. Frank Baum, famous for the timeless story The Wizard of Oz, created the Emerald City and the Yellow Brick Road during a time when every business venture he had undertaken had failed, leaving him deep in debt, and questioning his true purpose in life. This consistency in the lives of these writers led me to search further into the lives of other notoriously creative people. I found the same story everywhere...it was uncanny! This thing has played out in the lives of creative people in every area of the arts. Some of the world's most renowned painters created their masterpieces under the most incredible duress and abject poverty imaginable. Just this week, I read an article from the music industry stating that these times of "uncertainty" are bringing out of musicians and songwriters a creativity that is producing fresh new sounds and deeper lyrics than have been heard in quite a while.

Karl Cobos said...

Out of Emptiness and Darkness

Although my initial awareness of this truth came through that study of famous writers, I could have found it on the first page of God's Word.

"The earth was without form and an empty waste, and darkness was upon the face of the very great deep. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light; and there was light." Genesis 1:1-3 (Amp)

Creativity began in an atmosphere of emptiness and darkness. Perhaps in story form we could say it like this: "Once upon a time, God created. And He began creating when the whole world was empty and dark around Him. He brooded over that, and when all was said and done, He found that what He had created was very, very good!"

That is definitely something worth thinking about.



A further study of scripture reveals more about this God-creation-darkness connection than we might have imagined. Consider the fact that Psalm 18:11 tells us that God makes darkness His covering, or as the Amplified reads, His secret hiding place. Or, the fact that when God cut His covenant with Abraham, establishing the forever promises of God toward Israel, that He did it in the midst of a deep and tangible darkness. And then there is the fact that each and every one of us were fearfully and wonderfully knit together in the darkness of our mothers' wombs.



I think there is something profoundly beneficial in our knowing that darkness can bring out of us levels of creativity that we have not yet tapped into. Would any of us not agree that a greater release of creativity within the body of Christ would be very beneficial to the world at large? Wouldn't it be wonderful for the greatest expressions of creativity to finally come out of God's people first? And, lo and behold, we find ourselves living in the midst of dark days, a virtual seedbed for the accomplishment of just such a thing. Take another look at Isaiah 60:1-5 keeping this concept in mind. A deep, dense, darkness is coming upon the whole earth which will be simultaneously accompanied by a most radiant glory, shining forth from God's people. Darkness is the greatest potential for light, and light - illumination and revelation - is the beginning of all creative endeavors.

(in 2 parts)- Kim Miller

Karl Cobos said...

Out of Emptiness and Darkness


Although my initial awareness of this truth came through that study of famous writers, I could have found it on the first page of God's Word.

"The earth was without form and an empty waste, and darkness was upon the face of the very great deep. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light; and there was light." Genesis 1:1-3 (Amp)

Creativity began in an atmosphere of emptiness and darkness. Perhaps in story form we could say it like this: "Once upon a time, God created. And He began creating when the whole world was empty and dark around Him. He brooded over that, and when all was said and done, He found that what He had created was very, very good!"

That is definitely something worth thinking about.



A further study of scripture reveals more about this God-creation-darkness connection than we might have imagined. Consider the fact that Psalm 18:11 tells us that God makes darkness His covering, or as the Amplified reads, His secret hiding place. Or, the fact that when God cut His covenant with Abraham, establishing the forever promises of God toward Israel, that He did it in the midst of a deep and tangible darkness. And then there is the fact that each and every one of us were fearfully and wonderfully knit together in the darkness of our mothers' wombs.


I think there is something profoundly beneficial in our knowing that darkness can bring out of us levels of creativity that we have not yet tapped into. Would any of us not agree that a greater release of creativity within the body of Christ would be very beneficial to the world at large? Wouldn't it be wonderful for the greatest expressions of creativity to finally come out of God's people first? And, lo and behold, we find ourselves living in the midst of dark days, a virtual seedbed for the accomplishment of just such a thing. Take another look at Isaiah 60:1-5 keeping this concept in mind. A deep, dense, darkness is coming upon the whole earth which will be simultaneously accompanied by a most radiant glory, shining forth from God's people. Darkness is the greatest potential for light, and light - illumination and revelation - is the beginning of all creative endeavors.

(in 2 parts)- Kim Miller

Karl Cobos said...

Out of Emptiness and Darkness



Although my initial awareness of this truth came through that study of famous writers, I could have found it on the first page of God's Word.

"The earth was without form and an empty waste, and darkness was upon the face of the very great deep. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light; and there was light." Genesis 1:1-3 (Amp)

Creativity began in an atmosphere of emptiness and darkness. Perhaps in story form we could say it like this: "Once upon a time, God created. And He began creating when the whole world was empty and dark around Him. He brooded over that, and when all was said and done, He found that what He had created was very, very good!"

That is definitely something worth thinking about.



A further study of scripture reveals more about this God-creation-darkness connection than we might have imagined. Consider the fact that Psalm 18:11 tells us that God makes darkness His covering, or as the Amplified reads, His secret hiding place. Or, the fact that when God cut His covenant with Abraham, establishing the forever promises of God toward Israel, that He did it in the midst of a deep and tangible darkness. And then there is the fact that each and every one of us were fearfully and wonderfully knit together in the darkness of our mothers' wombs.



I think there is something profoundly beneficial in our knowing that darkness can bring out of us levels of creativity that we have not yet tapped into. Would any of us not agree that a greater release of creativity within the body of Christ would be very beneficial to the world at large? Wouldn't it be wonderful for the greatest expressions of creativity to finally come out of God's people first? And, lo and behold, we find ourselves living in the midst of dark days, a virtual seedbed for the accomplishment of just such a thing. Take another look at Isaiah 60:1-5 keeping this concept in mind. A deep, dense, darkness is coming upon the whole earth which will be simultaneously accompanied by a most radiant glory, shining forth from God's people. Darkness is the greatest potential for light, and light - illumination and revelation - is the beginning of all creative endeavors.

(in 2 parts)

Karl Cobos said...

Out of Emptiness and Darkness


Although my initial awareness of this truth came through that study of famous writers, I could have found it on the first page of God's Word.

"The earth was without form and an empty waste, and darkness was upon the face of the very great deep. The Spirit of God was moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light; and there was light." Genesis 1:1-3 (Amp)

Creativity began in an atmosphere of emptiness and darkness. Perhaps in story form we could say it like this: "Once upon a time, God created. And He began creating when the whole world was empty and dark around Him. He brooded over that, and when all was said and done, He found that what He had created was very, very good!"

That is definitely something worth thinking about.



A further study of scripture reveals more about this God-creation-darkness connection than we might have imagined. Consider the fact that Psalm 18:11 tells us that God makes darkness His covering, or as the Amplified reads, His secret hiding place. Or, the fact that when God cut His covenant with Abraham, establishing the forever promises of God toward Israel, that He did it in the midst of a deep and tangible darkness. And then there is the fact that each and every one of us were fearfully and wonderfully knit together in the darkness of our mothers' wombs.



I think there is something profoundly beneficial in our knowing that darkness can bring out of us levels of creativity that we have not yet tapped into. Would any of us not agree that a greater release of creativity within the body of Christ would be very beneficial to the world at large? Wouldn't it be wonderful for the greatest expressions of creativity to finally come out of God's people first? And, lo and behold, we find ourselves living in the midst of dark days, a virtual seedbed for the accomplishment of just such a thing. Take another look at Isaiah 60:1-5 keeping this concept in mind. A deep, dense, darkness is coming upon the whole earth which will be simultaneously accompanied by a most radiant glory, shining forth from God's people. Darkness is the greatest potential for light, and light - illumination and revelation - is the beginning of all creative endeavors.

(in 2 parts)- by Kim Miller

Karl Cobos said...

Hey bish, somehow that article got posted several times, not sure what happened, but the last 3 times you see my name, you can delete those and it will leave the 2-part post (document).

Well, just came back from standing in line to see if I can be used as an extra in the movie remake of "Footloose", they take your picture and put you on file.

Never did that before, it was interesting to see all the different kinds of people that showed up.

On the way there I was hurrying a little bit but as I was leaving my subdivision there was a big turtle at the entrance walking in the middle of the street. Do I stop?
I've seen enough squashed turtles so I decided to put on the hazards and get out and help this guy...

...as I picked him up, his feet going every which way, I started across the road thinking of the creek nearby. While I was walking, the thought came to my mind that this turtle didn't know he needed saving, and probably didn't want me to really bother him...but I simply apprehended him (against his will) and saved him any way and placed him by the creek hoping he'd go to the sound of the water. Felt good...just loved him...and made a difference.

Avatar said...

"and to continue to discover every day what that is, and what it can be."

... I love the faith walk that this portion of the CITN Vision embraces and makes clear...never in the literal, but always in the unknown.