On April 15th, 2012 the ConneXion community will gather together to speak its yearly commitment to each other. This commitment we call our “covenant”. But what does this word mean?
Covenant is first and foremost a theological word which means that it tells us something about God: who God is and what God does. In scripture, covenant refers to God’s resolute love and commitment to his people. In the Old Testament, God called Israel and made a covenant with them because he wished to shower his goodness on them and also to use them to be a blessing to the whole world. In later times, God called the church for the same reasons and made a new covenant with them through Jesus Christ. We, the church around the world today, are a part of that new covenant.
So, why should The ConneXion have a covenant if all Christians are already part of the New Covenant? Well, two things need to be said to that: First, The ConneXion covenant is NOT a different covenant from that of what all Christians belong to. Rather, The ConneXion chose to form a document called a “covenant” in order to make concrete, in our time and place, what the Gospel made universal in Jesus Christ. Put differently, we made a covenant as a way of asking, “what does it look like to be a part of the New Covenant in Arborg, Manitoba and how can we commit to that life?” Second, the motive behind having a covenant is to encourage intentionality within our community. Of course we should always be intentional in our commitments to each other and to God. However, having a service once a year to remind ourselves of our commitments is helpful for encouraging us to continue to think about and act towards ways of fulfilling that covenant with greater and greater faithfulness. This is our covenant:
I covenant to bless God and those around me through the use of my God-given gifts.
I covenant to live in fellowship by following the example of Jesus in serving the community and in eating together to build growing relationships.
I covenant to listen to the promptings of God in my life (through interaction with others, solitude, reading, prayer, etc.)
I covenant to keep learning what it means to be a Jesus follower in my world by reading God’s Word individually and in community.
I covenant to send and be sent to be the healing fragrance of Jesus as God enables me.