Practicing Discernment: The Values for The Bridge Montrose in Houston, Texas

This post is a discernment exercise. This post contains the values of The Bridge Montrose, an EFCA Church in Houston, Texas. How would evaluate the values of this church? Any red flags or warnings? Or does this appear to be okay? Feel free to discuss and pick this apart. 

“Intelligence is something we are born with. Thinking is a skill that must be learned.”

Edward De Bono

“To live is to think.”

Marcus Cicero

That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived there, they went to the Jewish synagogue. 11 And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth. 12 As a result, many Jews believed, as did many of the prominent Greek women and men.

Acts 17: 10-12 NLT

Empire State Building in New York City

This blog likes run discernment exercises that will allow people to think critically for themselves and to study what a church is saying. This blog wants to get people to think for themself and to think in a constructive way that is creative. I have not done this in a while but I want to have another discernment exercise of an EFCA church. After all this blog pays attention to the EFCA and reads and researches the organization. The Bridge Montrose is an EFCA Church in Houston, Texas. Its led by Heath Haynes. On the webpage of The Bridge Montrose they express their values. How would you look at their values? Is this healthy for a church? Or does this raise red flags and would you stay away from this organization. Feel free to study their values and discuss below.


values

 Together in Biblical Community

Living as a family journeying together towards Jesus with the postures of Shared Life, Shared Worship, and Shared Service.
Scripture – Acts 2:42-46John 13:34-35Romans 12:4-81 Thessalonians 2:8

Missional to the Community

Living as a family AND living deployed from our neighbors to the ends of the earth for the Gospel mission, understanding that every Christian is a disciplemaker and every disciplemaker is a missionary with a mission field to claim.
Scripture – Jeremiah 29:7Ezekiel 3:18Matthew 5:14-16John 1:14John 15:15John 17:1-26Acts 2:47

Living Under Biblical Authority

It is our joy to submit our entire lives to God’s leading through His commands and teaching in all Scripture (the Bible) because it shows us who God is through revealing His will and Character as well as showing us who we are and our purpose in life.
Scripture – Psalm 1:2-3Psalm 19:7-11Matthew 5:17-20John 1:1-5John 5:39-40Colossians 1:9-102 Timothy 3:16-17

Living in Biblical Freedom

Through the work of Jesus, we embrace freedom from slavery to our selfish desires (sin) and to go to any and all who need to see His Truth and love.
Scripture – John 8:31John 8:34-35Romans 8:1-112 Corinthians 3:17Galatians 5:1 , 1 Peter 2:16-17

Committed to Multiplying Disciples and Churches

As we live out these values, we will spread God’s glory by cultivating and multiplying followers of Jesus who impact the world around them resulting in the need to send out Gospel Communities (churches) over and over again.
Scripture – Matthew 28:18-201 Corinthians 14:122 Timothy 2:2

Common Definitions– HERE

Web Venn Alpha

5 thoughts on “Practicing Discernment: The Values for The Bridge Montrose in Houston, Texas

  1. I wonder what “Living as a family” / “Share life” means to them. I can imagine different ways that different churches might interpret that. Shared living space? Shared finances? Constant bickering? Or are they simply saying that they’re not Sunday-only Christians? One of the problems with the church in the US is compartmentalization of church life and secular life into different boxes, and I could see statements like this as a declaration of intent to integrate their church life into all compartments of their lives. This relates to a pet peeve of mine regarding baptism: baptism is supposed to be a public testimony that you are a Christ follower, but when most of the people you know don’t go to your church or know that you do, it is not very public.

    I like the statement that every Christian is a disciplemaker.

    Freedom from slavery to sin is certainly great (absolutely, stupendously great with a triple exclamation point!!!) but Christian freedom goes farther than that. Paul says that we are free not just from sin, but from the law. So in a sense we have the freedom to sin without that one sin causing eternal condemnation (which, he emphasizes, is not a license to sin).

    The sentence structure under Living Under Biblical Authority is a little awkward and ambiguous. This paragraph seems pretty rah-rah… does it actually give them joy to submit to God? Sometimes the submission process is anything but joyful. I’m reminded of a marriage study I did once where the presenter said, “Yay, another hardship that allows me to trust God more!”

    Committed to multiplying disciples and churches jumps out at me: multiplying followers creates the need to plant new churches? Maybe if the only reason you plant churches is because your main campus is overcrowded, but I can think of better reasons to plant churches. This could be displaying a numbers-oriented value. On the plus side, their dedicated Church Planting page indicates a healthier approach. If/since they are so intent on planting churches, I wonder why the page gives the impression that they actually haven’t yet.

    In the Common Definitions link, they have 3 of the four H’s of the 4-H pledge.

    I don’t see anything here that would make me for sure want to not attend church at The Bridge Montrose. Other than, perhaps, Houston weather.

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      • I’m not worried about covid-19 any more. As long as vulnerable populations are protected and the hospitals are not full it’s best to let just burn itself out. I say that as someone who is more at-risk due to asthma.

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      • If you “let it burn itself out”, the hospitals *will* be full. There’s no avoiding it. It’s not just older and “vulnerable” people who are made severely ill by this virus. And we just don’t have enough hospital beds (not to mention equipment, trained personnel, medicines, etc) to handle a full-blown outbreak. The Southwest is already at the breaking point.

        This is going to be a long, horrible summer…

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      • If you “let it burn itself out”, the hospitals *will* be full.

        If it were still March, I’d agree. Now, though, I don’t. We know a lot more about treatment, there are several promising treatments that could/should be through their trials by the time the fall wave comes, and these treatments could/should be sufficient to keep people healthy enough to avoid the hospital. Four companies have antibody treatments (e.g. growing anti-covid antibodies in a vat that can treat an existing case or provide immunity for 2-3 months), there are multiple drugs other than HCL that show promise, and even some supplements like vitamin D and melatonin seem like they will help. Back in March we didn’t know that people with Type A blood had worse outcomes and Type O blood had better outcomes. Now we know that most people who become infected do so from super-spreader events (the median R0 is lower than the average R0). Some people even appear to be able to fight it off with their innate immune system (i.e. without creating antibodies). We have observed, but don’t fully understand why, that the spread of the disease is not exponential as we thought. Everything new that we discover lowers the impact instead of increasing it. Since the death rate before we knew these things was only slightly worse than a bad flu season, now that we do know them, it will be better.

        People who participate in large crowds indoors like bars and churches may have to learn the hard way not to do those things. I am probably not going back to in-person church worship services for a long time. How church will change as a result of this is going to be absolutely fascinating. My church is seeing a resurgence in small group activity.

        Recall that even in the height of the first wave, in NYC, the hospitals did not overflow and the emergency hospitals that were set up by various groups like the military and Samaritan’s Purse ended up being under-utilized. Now there are some people saying that NYC may have achieved herd immunity. With what we knew early on, the potential for overflow was there, but now we know more.

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