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Why Are We Named Restore?

Want to Know Why We Are Named Restore?

To understand why our church is named Restore, it is helpful to understand where we are in God’s story. Such a story can be roughly summarized into three different chapters (Yes, I’m about to try and summarize the story of the Bible in this email. But don’t worry! It’s not as lengthy as one might fear!).

Chapter One: Creation
The beginning of this story that we are a part of starts in Genesis (Gen 1 & 2). God builds Himself a home in the Garden of Eden and then, in an act of love, He places us at the very center of it (Gen 2:8;15). What this tells us is that from the very beginning God wanted to be with us, to share His life with us, to love us, to be close to us, to walk with us, to be our friend (Gen 3:8). He invited us into His home.

Chapter Two: Brokenness
We were created and placed in the garden to live in harmony and peace with one another and with God. But then something happens, in the famous story, Adam and Eve listen to the serpent who deceives them into eating fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Gen 3:1-6) – something God had told them not to do because they would certainly die (Gen 2:17). God knew that if humanity chose its own path by eating the fruit, evil, death and brokenness would inevitably follow for everyone (Rom 5:12-19). Immediately Adam and Eve begin to blame each other for their mistake, mistrust between people began that day (Gen 3:12-13). Yet, even here God was graceful. He comes to talk to them about their decision, not as an angry, vengeful God, but as a caring and concerned friend (Gen 3:8-11). He covers their shame (Gen 3:21). Then in a beautiful promise to Adam and Eve declares that He will undo what they have done that day (Gen 3:15). Someone will come. Someone who will redeem, renew and restore.

Chapter Three: Restoration
After death and brokenness enter the world, God in His love for us and for this earth, begins to work things together to restore all things (Jn 3:16). We know from Chapter One that this earth is His home and that He built it to be with us. We know from Chapter Two that humanity chose a path that was not part of God’s plan for them, and so brought in death, destruction, abuse, conflict, mistrust and sin. But remember that promise from Chapter 2? That promise was fulfilled when Jesus was killed on a cross and three days later rose from the dead. He went from death to life. A change, a reversal, a renewal has started in Jesus first and is now beginning to spread to the rest of creation. When death was forced upon Him, Jesus overcame it with life. But it was not just death that Jesus came to reverse – Jesus came to reverse the values of our hearts. Jesus showed us how to pursue compassion instead of self-preservation (Matt 5:38-42), sacrifice instead of power (Jn 13:1-5), humility instead of pride (Jn 6:38), love instead of hate (Matt 5:43-48), and acceptance instead of judgement (Jn 8:9-11). Jesus is called our “cornerstone” or “first fruit” because a cornerstone is the first stone that is laid down when constructing a building before all the rest of the bricks are laid (Eph 2:19-22), and the first fruit is the very first to be reaped from a harvest where many more will follow (1 Cor 15:20-26). Jesus was the first to reverse the process of death and to bring compassion peace, love and humility to people around Him. The restoration of all things started with Jesus.

And that’s where we come in to the story. We are in the middle of Chapter Three – the restoration! The work of Jesus continues in us, His church. He will eventually return to complete the work that He started all the way back in Chapter One, but until then He has tasked His church with bringing about the restoration of all things and of all people.

And that’s why our church is named Restore! Our church name reminds us of where we are in the story and that we are a part of the story, this story of restoration. It reminds us that He is restoring all things, and all people – the guilty to grace, the shamed to dignity, the doubters to discovery, the abused to justice, the outsiders to embrace, the addicted to freedom, the hopeless to purpose, the anxious to stillness. He has tasked us with doing this great work (Matt 5:13-16). Eventually the world will be restored (Rev 21 & 22). Love and peace will once again rule and we will live with God and in harmony with one another.

Want to Know Why We Are Named Restore?

To understand why our church is named Restore, it is helpful to understand where we are in God’s story. Such a story can be roughly summarized into three different chapters (Yes, I’m about to try and summarize the story of the Bible in this email. But don’t worry! It’s not as lengthy as one might fear!).

Chapter One: Creation
The beginning of this story that we are a part of starts in Genesis (Gen 1 & 2). God builds Himself a home in the Garden of Eden and then, in an act of love, He places us at the very center of it (Gen 2:8;15). What this tells us is that from the very beginning God wanted to be with us, to share His life with us, to love us, to be close to us, to walk with us, to be our friend (Gen 3:8). He invited us into His home.

Chapter Two: Brokenness
We were created and placed in the garden to live in harmony and peace with one another and with God. But then something happens, in the famous story, Adam and Eve listen to the serpent who deceives them into eating fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (Gen 3:1-6) – something God had told them not to do because they would certainly die (Gen 2:17). God knew that if humanity chose its own path by eating the fruit, evil, death and brokenness would inevitably follow for everyone (Rom 5:12-19). Immediately Adam and Eve begin to blame each other for their mistake, mistrust between people began that day (Gen 3:12-13). Yet, even here God was graceful. He comes to talk to them about their decision, not as an angry, vengeful God, but as a caring and concerned friend (Gen 3:8-11). He covers their shame (Gen 3:21). Then in a beautiful promise to Adam and Eve declares that He will undo what they have done that day (Gen 3:15). Someone will come. Someone who will redeem, renew and restore.

Chapter Three: Restoration
After death and brokenness enter the world, God in His love for us and for this earth, begins to work things together to restore all things (Jn 3:16). We know from Chapter One that this earth is His home and that He built it to be with us. We know from Chapter Two that humanity chose a path that was not part of God’s plan for them, and so brought in death, destruction, abuse, conflict, mistrust and sin. But remember that promise from Chapter 2? That promise was fulfilled when Jesus was killed on a cross and three days later rose from the dead. He went from death to life. A change, a reversal, a renewal has started in Jesus first and is now beginning to spread to the rest of creation. When death was forced upon Him, Jesus overcame it with life. But it was not just death that Jesus came to reverse – Jesus came to reverse the values of our hearts. Jesus showed us how to pursue compassion instead of self-preservation (Matt 5:38-42), sacrifice instead of power (Jn 13:1-5), humility instead of pride (Jn 6:38), love instead of hate (Matt 5:43-48), and acceptance instead of judgement (Jn 8:9-11). Jesus is called our “cornerstone” or “first fruit” because a cornerstone is the first stone that is laid down when constructing a building before all the rest of the bricks are laid (Eph 2:19-22), and the first fruit is the very first to be reaped from a harvest where many more will follow (1 Cor 15:20-26). Jesus was the first to reverse the process of death and to bring compassion peace, love and humility to people around Him. The restoration of all things started with Jesus.

And that’s where we come in to the story. We are in the middle of Chapter Three – the restoration! The work of Jesus continues in us, His church. He will eventually return to complete the work that He started all the way back in Chapter One, but until then He has tasked His church with bringing about the restoration of all things and of all people.

And that’s why our church is named Restore! Our church name reminds us of where we are in the story and that we are a part of the story, this story of restoration. It reminds us that He is restoring all things, and all people – the guilty to grace, the shamed to dignity, the doubters to discovery, the abused to justice, the outsiders to embrace, the addicted to freedom, the hopeless to purpose, the anxious to stillness. He has tasked us with doing this great work (Matt 5:13-16). Eventually the world will be restored (Rev 21 & 22). Love and peace will once again rule and we will live with God and in harmony with one another.