Central Together: September 24, 2023

Central Family,

The big week is finally here! I can't wait for this Sunday when we get to have our Get in the Game Commitment Sunday for our NEXT Initiative. It's going to be a special time. We're asking every one of you to do three things coming into this Sunday. First, we want you to wear your NEXT shirts. We can all be together and represent this big moment in the life of our church. Second, we want you to work with your family or your roommates or friends and fill out your commitment card to prayerfully consider what God is calling you to invest as we seek to take the Gospel to the next generation. Then, third, we want to invite you to bring that commitment card along with a first-fruits offering that you'll then place in our offering baskets on our Commitment Sunday. We're going to have a special moment at the conclusion of our message this Sunday in which we'll invite the entire congregation to take time bringing those pledges, bringing those commitments, bringing those offerings before the Lord to launch us into this new season. It promises to be a powerful time, and I can't wait to see what God does through our people as we look ahead to what He's going to do during this next century.

Now, after that, we get the chance to keep the conversation going about NEXT the following Sunday with our mobilization focus. So, on that particular Sunday, we're going to have a ministry fair out in our foyer before and after the service where you can come by and get connected to some of our service and mission opportunities, but in particular, we're going to have you fill out a second card that Sunday--a mobilization card, where you're going to do at least two things. One of those is you're going to tell us about our seven areas of focus for our mobilization efforts and which of those you're particularly interested in getting more involved in. Maybe that's our Central Garden or it's related to our short-term mission trips or one of the many opportunities we have. You’ll let us know that. In addition to that, we're going to invite you to write down two or three names of people in your life that don't yet know Jesus who you want to commit to pray for and pursue over these next two years as we head towards a hundredth anniversary, praying that over the course of that time through your efforts and by God's grace, they might find and follow Jesus and trust Him in a saving way. That'll be one of the ways we're inviting our church not to just support NEXT financially, but to live it out and put it into practice to reach our neighbors and the nations.

Now, this whole series will culminate on October 8 at our Celebration Sunday. That’s when we'll get to announce the big news about how much our church has committed to give, how much we've received in those first-fruit offerings, and what kind of responses we've had from those mobilization commitments on our Mobilization Sunday. I can't wait to celebrate with you on that day. We've got a big set of weeks ahead of us, and I can't wait to see what God is going to do.

We'll see you this Sunday.

In Christ,