We make disciples. And everything we do is geared toward that. We believe disciples follow Jesus fully. We grow spiritually as we study scripture, pray, worship and fellowship. We study scripture and pray in our bible studies and in our worship services. We worship in our services.
Our children enjoy Children’s Church 3 Sundays each month, during the 11 AM worship service. They also experience adult church once per month. That way, they don’t grow up in church without ever actually having been in church. Our teachers love the kids. They pray for them often. And they teach about Christ- he’s the hero of every story and every lesson- and how he transforms hearts. We don’t teach morality divorced from Christ’s sacrificial love: “God hates liars. So don’t lie!” Or…”God gets angry when you don’t obey your parents. And you don’t want God angry at you.” Instead, we set before them Jesus as beautiful and sacrificial. And direct them to his love and his desire to take their sin upon himself so that they can be set free to walk in his goodness and mercy. And, y’know…we do crafts and games and such!
Our youth love hanging together! They meet at 10 AM each Sunday. Some attend the 9 AM service. Others attend at 11 AM. Regardless, 10 AM is their time together. Our goal is not entertainment. Youth can attend because they are the center of attention. They can be entertained. We’d rather lead them into transformation. Into whole-hearted devotion to Jesus. Because he changes lives, not just moments. They have their own meeting place next to the church. They laugh, share, learn the scriptures and encourage one another in Christ. They do youth camps and become big brothers and sisters to our kids, often volunteering alongside (and supervised by) adults in nursery and Children’s Church. Our youth are growing in Christ. And they’re a blessing to every single one of us at Layman.
Our men’s ministry is geared toward fellowship. We’ve been known to ride motorcycles (and drive cars!) to the beach for a long weekend annually. We hang out at local restaurants and pubs. We compare craft beers. And grab coffee. We cook for the Layman women yearly. What we don’t do? Sit in a circle and cry. Because it’s much easier for men to talk while hanging out, riding a motorcycle, mountain biking, or just having a beer or two.
Our women’s ministry meets for meals. For coffee or wine. To share our lives and pray for each other in our struggles. We do life together. Authentically and with no put-ons or fake smiles. We love and connect with one another and with God. And we wouldn’t have it any other way.
We are not a Pastor-centered church. Our Pastor is not the final authority. That’s not church- it’s a dictatorship. Or, at the very least, a cult of personality. And any church that centers on the Pastor is dysfunctional. We seek to be Christ-centered in all things. And the model of church that says, “The Pastor does the ministry and we pay him for it” is anti-biblical. Instead, the elders (plural, including the Pastor) equip believers for ministry (Eph. 4). And then become support personnel as God’s people minister to one another’s needs. And the final authority in all matters of the church? Sola Scriptura. Google it. Seriously- it’s worth your time.
Our band leads us into worship each Sunday. Our tech guys record sermons, play video, work the audio and advance the lyrics as we sing our praises. And we always have room for those who are A) Talented and gifted (The joyful noise? It belongs in the congregation. Along with the ego of anyone who MUST have the focus on themselves). B) Committed first to Christ and second to Layman as “home.” C) Humble and teachable. D) Seeking to live out the Christian life.