Our Values

At TCC our actions and decisions are guided by a set of values. 

These values are meant to be worked out and worked on all  together, not as a buffet. 

While we all have certain values we will naturally gravitate toward, and values that will challenge us, we aspire to live into all five of these values as fully as possible, both as individuals and as a gathered community. 

 

By the power of the Holy Spirit, and guided by the witness of Scripture...


We make a COMMITMENT to our internal community.  
At TCC we believe that following Jesus is something that affects every day of our lives, not just Sunday mornings. This daily choice to live the values of the Kingdom of God is difficult, so we make a commitment to show up and encourage one another (Hebrews 10:24-25) and offer our gifts and strengths to the whole community (1 Corinthians 12:25-27) as we learn and grow in our faith together during Sunday worship, small groups, service opportunities, and shared meals. Being a disciple of Christ is a choice each of us makes individually, but it takes a community to help us stay the course. We make a commitment to rumbling with the difficult and vulnerable seasons of life with one another so that we might better bear public witness and work for truth and justice as a congregation.


We embody a JUSTICE-centered faith to our external community. 

At TCC we recognize that justice is not a buzzword--it’s an orientation of our lives toward the ushering in of the Kingdom of God on earth. In the Bible, the words for justice and righteousness are the same, which means that we cannot live in right relationship to God without being in right relationship with one another. Dr. Cornel West wrote that “justice is what love looks like in public.” At TCC we take this seriously. To love God and our neighbor (Luke 10:25-28) we must engage in the work of seeking justice in both our daily lives and in those critical moments when our collective attention turns toward one particular facet of life.


We practice INCLUSION of everyone.  No exceptions. 

At TCC we affirm that the Holy Spirit is at work in the lives of all who profess Jesus as Lord, and as such everyone has something to offer and contribute to the community. We are especially mindful to work for the full inclusion and affirmationof those who have historically experienced marginalization in church settings (people of color, LGBTQ+ people, people with disabilities, etc.) Every person bears the image of God without exception (Genesis 1:27), so our view of God is limited and incomplete if we only allow one social group of people to speak about God. We all benefit when we listen to and learn from those who have been pushed to the margins. 


We are dedicated to uncomfortable GROWTH.  

At TCC we believe that growthrequires us to value diversity, learn continually, exercise humility, and be willing to make mistakes. All of these things are uncomfortable, and so we are dedicated to growth,even when it’s uncomfortable -- because the best lessons are the fruit of uncomfortable seasons. Following Christ’s example of emptying himself for the sake of the other (Philippians 2:5-11), we also commit to holding space for one another, valuing diverse expressions of faith, and maintaining a posture of curiosity instead of fear.



We celebrate the EMPOWERMENT of all people to live into the fullness of their gifts.  

At TCC we affirm that the Holy Spirit gives different gifts to different people for the benefit of the community

(1 Corinthians 12:7-11). As such, we celebrate the empowerment of all people to live into the fullness of their gifts. To make empowermentpossible, we work to make sure that our gatherings are spaces where people feel safe taking risks, learning from one another, asking hard questions, affirming the gifts they see in others, and receiving affirmation of their own gifts. We are particularly committed to the empowerment of the next generation of leaders through our student ministries and in partnership with Transformation Student Development. Our time gathered together on Sunday mornings and in small groups is meant to provide space for empowerment of the whole congregation -- children, youth, and adults -- through instruction, encouragement, listening, and relationship building, so that each person might be equipped for every good work

(2 Timothy 3:16-17).  


what we believe

We believe God inspired the authors of Scripture by the Spirit to speak to all generations of believers, including us today. God calls us to immerse ourselves in this authoritative and infallible narrative, to communally and individually interpret and live out that story today as we are led by the Spirit of God. 


In the beginning God created all things good. God was and always will be in a communal relationship with God-self-Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God created us to be relational as well and marked us with an identity as God's image bearers and a missional calling to serve, care for, and cultivate the earth. God created humans in his image to live in fellowship with God one another, our inner self, and creation. Satan tempted the first humans, and darkness and evil entered the story through human sin and are now a part of the world. This devastating event resulted in our relationships with God, others, ourselves, and creation being fractured and in desperate need of redeeming.


We believe God did not abandon creation to destruction and decay; rather God promised to restore this broken world. As part of this purpose, God chose a people, Abraham and his descendants, to represent God in the world. God promised to bless them as a nation so that through them all nations would be blessed. In time they became enslaved in Egypt and cried out to God because of their oppression. God heard their cry, liberated them from their oppressor, and brought them to Sinai where God gave them an identity and a mission as God's treasured possession, a kingdom of priests, a holy people. Throughout the story of Israel, God refused to give up on people despite their frequent acts of unfaithfulness.


God brought this people into the Promised Land. Their state of blessing from God was intimately bound to their calling to embody the living God to other nations. They made movement toward this missional calling, yet they disobeyed and allowed foreign gods into the land, overlooked the poor, and mistreated the foreigner. The prophetic voices that emerge from the Scriptures held the calling of Israel to the mirror of how they treated the oppressed and marginalized. Through the prophets, God’s heart for the poor was made known, and we believe that God cares deeply for the marginalized and oppressed among us today. 


In Israel’s disobedience, they became indifferent and in turn irrelevant to the purposes to which God had called them. For a time, they were sent into exile; yet a hopeful remnant was always looking ahead with longing and hope to a renewed reign of God, where peace and justice would prevail.


We believe these longings found their fulfillment in Jesus the Messiah, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin, mysteriously God having become flesh. God in the flesh, Light from Light, true God from true God. Jesus came to preach good news to the poor, to bind up the brokenhearted and set captives free, proclaiming a new arrival of the kingdom of God, bringing about a new exodus, and restoring our fractured world. Jesus and his message were rejected by many as he confronted the oppressive nature of the religious elite and the empire of Rome. Yet his path of suffering, crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection has brought hope to all creation. Jesus is our only hope for bringing peace and reconciliation between God and humans and by surrendering our lives and following Him we can experience this salvation He offers. Through Jesus we have been forgiven and brought into right relationship with God.


The Spirit of God affirms as children of God all those who trust Jesus. The Spirit empowers us with gifts, convicts, guides, comforts, counsels, and leads us into truth through a communal life of worship and a missional expression of our faith. The church is rooted and grounded in Christ, practicing spiritual disciplines and celebrating baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The church is a global and local expression of living out the way of Jesus through love, peace, sacrifice, and healing as we embody the resurrected Christ, who lives in and through us, to a broken and hurting world.


We believe the day is coming when Jesus will return to judge the world, bringing an end to injustice and restoring all things to God’s original intent. God will reclaim this world and rule forever. The earth’s groaning will cease and God will dwell with us here in a restored creation. On that day we will beat swords into tools for cultivating the earth, the wolf will lie down with the lamb, there will be no more death, and God will wipe away all our tears. Our relationships with God, others, ourselves, and creation will be whole. 


We believe that when Jesus returns His followers will be bodily resurrected to live out this restored eternity with Him. This is what we long for. This is what we hope for. This is what we are giving our lives to - living out that future reality now.


**Adapted from Mars Hill Bible Church, Grand Rapids, MI**