Are we Crazy!?! Thrive’s 5 year Vision and our Prayer Wall!

Last month, the Pastors of Thrive Church were at the Exponential Church Planting conference in Orlando, FL. It was a GREAT trip. Lots of laughs, dreaming, praying and learning!

The theme of the conference was ‘Dream Big’ and we were challenged to do just that.

One morning, I found myself dreaming big in my prayer journal. I presented this to the other Thrive Pastors (Matt Moore, Dave Shephard and Dr. Tom Rundel) and we all tweaked it a bit. Then, this past Tuesday, I presented it to our staff and we tweaked it a little bit. Next month, I am going to present it to a combined meeting with our Thrive Elders and Financial Team.

Let me just say this…

It’s a wild and crazy Vision!

I read through it and some of the items on there scare me. In a good way, but they’re so big and so audacious, that really ONLY GOD could provide the needs to make some of this stuff happen.

So, this is our 5 year Vision at Thrive! This is what we’re praying and asking God to provide. We desperately want to make a HUGE impact in Central Michigan and the world and we’re stepping out in faith and believing that God can do the impossible.

Thrive turns 4 in October and I feel like in many ways, we’re just getting started!

Thrive’s 5 Year Vision

  • Every Life is changed by Jesus
  • Thrivers to be passionate about: Jesus, the Bible, Prayer, Giving and their Small Group
  • Elder and & Staff Unity
  • Financial Wisdom, Margin and Radical Generosity. We’re praying for a $600,000 a year budget and 4-6 months of operating budget in savings.
    • Staff to not have to raise support.
  • Partner with Local Churches who are struggling and provide help and new life.
  • 20 Acres of Land to be Donated.
  • Semi-Trailer and Box Truck to be donated.
  • A New Hub. 15,000 square feet of Offices, Prayer Center, One Youth Space, Tutoring, Thrive Counseling Center, Studios (Music, Video, Art), Do Good Space
  • Equipment. (2) MacBooks, Drum Set, Keyboard, Video Camera’s, Gaga Ball Pit, Obstacle Course Inflatable, Color Copier.
  • New Staff & Team Leaders. Small Group Director, Youth, Video, Stewardship.
  • Midland & Big Rapids Campus Pastor.
  • Add a Thrive campus in a local prison.
  • (2) Church Planting Residents.
  • Reach 1500 people weekly by 2022.
  • 24/7 Building that can be used 7 days a week by the Community. Including a small apartment complex that can be used to house Single moms, families, refugees, interns.

SHOW UP

  • Raise an additional $20,000 a year to reach students at CMU. This will give us a major presence on campus.
  • See 150 people a year Trust in Jesus at Thrive on Sunday’s.
  • 100 people to be baptized in 2017. 200 by 2022.
  • Record a live worship album.

JUMP IN

  • 500 people in Small Groups by 2019.
  • Increased Volunteers
    • 50 Road Crew
    • 200 Thrive Kidz
    • 75 First Impressions
    • 30 Prayer Team
    • 20 Care Team
    • (3) Worship Leaders
    • 40 Musicians
    • 30 One Youth Leaders
    • 30 Chi Alpha Leaders
    • 30 Outreach team
    • 25 Cars Ministry
  • Start an online Bible School. Offer practical courses to help develop life long followers of Jesus.

DO GOOD

  • Plant (2) Churches in Ecuador through Stadia and Compassion. ($190,000)
  • Join and help plant (2) Churches in Michigan.
  • Raise $50,000 a year to give away 1500 shoes to elementary students at local schools.
  • Give away 20 Cars a year and repair 40.
  • Support 15 Back to School Parties for Local Schools.
  • Sponsor a ‘Night to Shine’ Event
  • Host a community wide Halloween Party at Finch Fieldhouse
  • Sponsor a Teacher Appreciation Night for hundreds of local teachers.

NEXT GEN

  • Thrive Kidz
    • Raise up a Thrive Kidz Worship Team
    • Create a special needs room at Thrive Kidz
  • One Youth
    • Send 100 Students to Big Stuf Summer Camp
    • 40 Small Groups
    • Student Lead
    • Raise up a One Youth Worship Team
  • Chi Apha
    • (2) Houses on Campus for College Students

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A Giant Family Experience + Thrive is serving Central Michigan = A Special Day ahead!

Today at Thrive is going to be…

Different, Exciting, Awesome, Encouraging and Fun

We’re changing things up a bit. Because of a scheduling issue, we could only rent Finch Fieldhouse on the campus of CMU. So, we decided to turn today into a giant

…FAMILY EXPERIENCE!

Yup, our entire Church family is gathering together under one roof and we’re going to be together! Same experience times, 930 and 11am.

Half of Finch will be set up with 5 Giant Inflatables! The other half will be set up for worship experience! Thrive Kids will only be going for kids from 0-2 years! All the ages will be sitting together! It’s going to be AWESOME!

THEN…

if that wasn’t enough, we’re going to head out after each experience and serve our CITY!

#ForCentralMichigan

So, wear your #forcentralmichigan shirts. Throw a rake or shovel in your car. Then, after each experience, head to one of the sites and let’s serve!!!!

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Today I Get to make one of the BIGGEST announcements I have ever made at Thrive Church and I’m SOOOOOO EXCITED!!

I don’t think I’m exaggerating.

Today, I get to make a freaking huge announcement!

I mean, it will have giant implications for Thrive Church. Especially for our Kids and Teenagers!

And, I believe its going to help make a GIANT IMPACT in the Central MI area and beyond.

Oh man!

I am so thankful and honored that God allows me this GREAT privilege to Lead Thrive Church!

HERE WE GO!!!!!!

How to REALLY support your Church

The ‘Church’ is extremely important to me. I operate under the premise that because of Jesus and when it is working right…

The Local Church is the Hope of the World! 

The church isn’t a social club. The church isn’t an inward focused organization. The church isn’t a religion check mark.

Jesus died for the Church. If it was that important to Him, it is that important to me.

So, how do we go about supporting our local Church? Here are a few ideas.

A few ways to really support your Church

Actually devote time to pray for your Church. Yup, do you spend time every day praying for your Church. For your Pastor? For the staff and leaders? For God’s hand and favor upon it?

Move forward with your Church. Churches are notorious for refusing to change. So many are stuck in the past. And, the only forward movement they have is to try to relive the glory days. One of the best things you can do for your Church is to move forward with it. Don’t try to hold it back.

Have a financial plan to support your Church. So many Christians argue about tithing. Regardless if you believe the tithe is a New Covenant command or an actual 10%, we are still encouraged by Paul to give. Pray over a percentage to give that’s already planned between you and God. And then give faithfully and obediently and then see what happens in your life.

Get your kids involved. For my family, its just not an option for my kids to NOT be involved. So, we attend on Sunday’s. We all serve on Sunday’s. My teenagers are involved with youth group and our younger kids are a part of Thrive Kidz.

Represent Jesus and your Church online. The thing many people forget is that they are actually carriers of the mission of the Church. So, represent Jesus and your church wherever you go. Especially online. LIKE your Churches Facebook posts. LIKE your Pastor’s posts. Write encouraging comments.

Leave the best seats for guests. When you do gather on Sunday, leave the best seats for guests. Sit in the middle of a row. Leave the outside seats for guests.

Fight the urge to disappear. You will cause so much hurt if you just disappear, especially if you’ve built relationships with people. You think that if you just disappear quietly, it will cause less pain. Here’s the reality, when you disappear, you will cause pain. So, don’t. Fight the urge to disappear.

Honor your Pastor and Each Other. This is HUGE! Raise the culture of honor in your Church by actually honoring each other. Be kind and compassionate. Be loyal. Be ready to help.

These are a few absolute GREAT ways to Support your Church! 

 

 

 

Can 7 Sunday’s really be all that important? The next 7 at Thrive are just that…

 

Sunday is coming! I am extremely EXCITED about this Sunday! Why?

It’s Thrive’s last Sunday at the theater!

I have been praying for this day for over 2 years and I can’t wait! Don’t get me wrong, I will miss the theater! I am sad!

But, I am more EXCITED and EXPECTANT and EAGER than I am sad!!

 

Save a Seat Campaign

Have you had a chance to save a seat? If not, there are still seats to sponsor!! Right now **986**seats have been sponsored! That still leaves a few hundred that need to be sponsored!!

If you want to help, THANK YOU! Just head to http://www.thrivechurchmi.cc/give and select CMU fund. Or text, 84321, the amount and CMU!!

****THE NEXT 7 SUNDAYS****

I can’t even begin to explain how important the next 7 weeks are for Thrive Church! I know we’re all busy. But, I’m asking you to consider making these weeks a huge priority, here’s why.

March 26th…Our Last Sunday at Celebration Cinema! Let’s CELEBRATE together! Popcorn, Memories, the most IMPORTANT message ever, Communion, a time of prayer and the band has been putting in extra work on some very special songs.

April 2nd…First Sunday at CMU. 930 and 11am.

April 9th…Palm Sunday. A GIANT Sunday!

April 16th…EASTER SUNDAY [Look Again]. The super bowl of all Sundays.

April 23rd…BAPTISM Sunday at CMU!! Our first ever baptism on the stage at CMU. If you have never been baptized through immersion, please check out this link. http://thrivechurchmi.cc/baptism/

April 30th…The Church has Left the Building! We are not meeting for our experiences, but we will meet at CMU and then spread out all over the area and serve!

As you can tell, wow, this is our MOST IMPORTANT SEASON ever as a Church!!

Thank you for Stepping UP! For Showing UP, for Jumping In and for Doing Good!

 

A New Chapter for Thrive Church + #SaveaSeat Campaign = The Best is Yet to Come

 

Thrive Church is 175 weeks old! It’s been an amazing 3.5 years! Lives have been changed! Marriages have been encouraged and healed! People have found community! And…people have found Jesus and follow Him!! Through it all…God has been so faithful! 

As I look back on 2016, I just scratch my head when I think about all the ONLY GOD moments! You can check out our annual report HERE.

In fact, He has sent the most amazing people to be a part of this church! I am in awe most days when I think about the staff He’s assembled, the leadership team and the body of people who call Thrive home! Just amazing!

A New Chapter for Thrive Church! 

Very soon, we will start a new chapter. For the Church that started in a bar and then moved to a movie theater, we will move soon to the campus of Central Michigan University. WE ARE SO EXCITED!!

This is a total God thing! It’s an ONLY GOD moment and I’m so excited for this new chapter!

Why are we moving?

Simple. We have outgrown our space. Our current Sunday morning location is great and its been awesome! But, our kids ministry has suffered from a lack of space. Plus, our new location will position us in an amazing facility for both kids and adults and its in a great part of town! And we’re praying that God opens up doors for us to reach College students like never before!

So, how can we get there?

#SaveaSeat Campaign

We’re asking people to sponsor seats to change lives!! If we can get enough seats sponsored, we will be able to purchase the equipment we need to turn CMU into Thrive Church on Sundays!!

There are 1200 seats and we’re praying that we can each one sponsored at $40!!

We primarily need to create an amazing environment for our Kids Ministry! Here is a portion of what we need:

 

  • (4) Carts of Portable Kids Ministry Walls (Brand new, these are $8000). We’re praying we can get them donated or fine used ones.
  • (150 feet) of Pipe and Drape
  • (4) Portable TV Cases for Thrive Kidz and the TV’s to go in them.
  • (2) Giant rolls of carpet
  • Bean Bag chairs, toys, slides, little kids tables and chairs
  • (2) Powered speakers
  • (3) Laptops and Label Printers
  • New Signage for Campus for Thrive Kidz and Thrive Church
  • Dream items: Octoball ring, 9 Square in the air, bouncy inflatable

 

It’s super easy to sponsor a seat. Just text 84321, the amount and CMU. Or you can give online, just check the CMU Fund or give at Thrive.

 

Don’t Miss our Ramp up to Move to CMU:

March 1…40 Day Prayer Campaign Begin (Praying for God to move in this new season at Thrive Church)
March 11…Worship & Prayer Night at the Hub. 6-730pm. We will corporately pray for our move, for Easter and for God to move.
March 12…NEW SERIES BEGINS: How to Wreck Your Life
March 25…24 PRAYER DAY. People will reserve half hour slots to pray on their own or at the Hub or CMU.
March 19-31…Hanging Door Hangers all over Central MI and CMU
March 31…Tentative Set Up and Tear Down Training Night for Road Crew/Thrive Kidz/Production (630-9pm)

April 2…Soft Launch at CMU [New Experience Times: 930am & 11]
April 16…EASTER!!!! (LOOK AGAIN)
April 23…New Series: #ForCentralMichigan (Loving where you live, serving where you live) & Baptism Sunday!!
April 30…THE CHURCH HAS LEFT THE BUILDING!! Serving local Schools!

These are awesome times Thrive Church! God is doing some incredible things!

Would you join with me and PRAY LIKE CRAZY FOR SEATS TO BE SPONSORED?

 

Thrive Church…Tomorrow is going to be Powerful. Plus (+) We have an Interim Director for One Youth! Woo Hoo!

Happy Saturday Thrive Church
 
I hope you’re doing well and enjoying this weather!!
 

You have to know 3 things…

 
1. We’re talking about how to Recalibrate Your Life tomorrow. Maybe you’ve been out of whack. Feeling like something is missing. Feeling like you’re ‘off’ with God? We’re diving into this passage…
2. Please check your mailbox or email inbox on Monday and Tuesday. I sent home a letter with some SUPER IMPORTANT UPDATES ON THE MOVE TO CMU!!!
 

Are you praying for that? Are you asking God to provide? Are you asking Him to open up the floodgates of heaven on our Church? Please do!

 
3. Jessica Herron is One Youth’s new Interim Director! WOOOOO HOOOOO!!!! Let me back up. One Youth has come a LONG way this way! We have record students involved, record adult volunteers, amazing worship and its been AMAZING on Sunday nights!
 
PAUSE: If your student isn’t involved, come on! Get them there!!
 
Ok, anyways, I have been leading the Church and leading One Youth. Which has worked. But, honestly, I need to raise up new leaders and Matt and I have been praying for One Youth’s next steps.
 
God laid Jess on my heart. She’s been at Thrive since the beginning. Her heart for our students in unreal. She helped start One Youth and honesty, it wouldn’t be here without her faithfulness!
 
Plus, I have personally seen her GROW a ton as a leader over the last 3 years. So, Matt and I took her to lunch and asked her to be the Interim Director and she said YES!!!
 
She is the Interim and she is volunteer staff. I have empowered her to LEAD. To make decisions. To be the point person.
 
So, PLEASE Congratulate her! Please THANK her!!!
 

2017 is already shaping up to be our BEST year yet as a Church!!!

 
The Best is yet to come!
Jason Raitz
 
PS…You coming tomorrow to Thrive? If not, why? If you’ve been away for a while and find it hard to come back, just take the step!