There is a question I get regularly when talking about Restoration Church with others. If someone doesn’t ask me directly, usually they’re thinking it.
“Do we need another church in Lake Zurich?”
The short answer is this: “Yes, absolutely.”
Churches Are Vital to the Welfare of Every Community
It’s a well-known fact that we are a relational species. Throughout history people naturally and regularly gathered at centralized place such as the village well, the king’s court, and the city square. As societies modernized in industrialized countries, our places of gathering became decentralized, segregated, and in many cases, removed all together. Indoor plumbing removed the necessity for gathering daily at the village well. Democratic systems of government removed the need to gather in the king’s court. Commerce, consumerism, and suburbanization removed the need of visiting the city square where daily transactions for food and supplies were once done exclusively. Although these are natural and necessary changes to a growing and modernizing society, they leave the society devoid of their necessary survival instincts: being relational with a broad and diverse society. Even our modern studies don’t lie, isolation from others will have profound negative effects on your emotional and physical health, perhaps leading to one’s early death.
The good (or bad) news is that societies adapt. We crave relationships, so we work longer hours to be with our coworkers, connect with people we’ve never met face to face before on the internet, and spend hours emotionally connecting with fictional characters delivered to us through the soft glow of video screens. Today, we can also find many places where a society naturally gathers based on affinity such as local bars, coffee shops, and gyms (to name a few). However, all of these methods and places often fall short in connecting the broader, diverse society together in authentic community.
Despite mass societal changes over the millennia, there has always been one place where people, despite their affinity, economic status, or vocation have gathered, communed, and related as one people – the place of worship. From the early, crude altars of worship described in the book of Genesis, to the traveling Tabernacle built by Moses in Exodus, to the first and second Jewish temples and its courts, to the local synagogues across the Middle East and Roman world in the first century, and to the establishment of the Church following the ministry and mandate of Jesus; the house of worship has stood the test of time. Regrettably, the pious have not always done church well – us Christians certainly have a number of sour moments in our tattered past, and sadly the trend continues today. Yet there she is, the adorned bride of Christ, standing in all of her beauty, glory, and brokenness – the Church. The single institution created by God, established in Christ, and empowered through the Holy Spirit, to bring about redemption, salvation, heavenly order to a corrupt and sinful world.
Churches are vital to the welfare of every community. Only healthy churches can provide a place where the broader community can gather, connect, and relate to others across affinity, affiliation, socioeconomic status, and vocation. Only can the Church meet the deep spiritual and relational needs of every person, in-turn positively impacting and transforming the mind and bodily health of its members. Only can the Church ensure that all of its members are cared for, especially in times of need. Only can the Church encourage, equip, and empower a society towards a faith-filled lifestyle that is fit for heaven. Imagine your neighbors, coworkers, classmates, and teammates – every member of your community – transformed and living by the values of love, grace, humility, and forgiveness that can only come through the Father. That is truly restorative in every sense of the word.
By the Numbers
Within an 8-mile radius of Lake Zurich from the intersection of Route 12 & Route 22 (a typical ~20 minute drive), there are 305,000 people living in our target suburban context and community. Within that population, our research suggests (conservatively) that 200,000 people are uncommitted to biblical teaching and living in personal practice regardless of their church attendance or denominational affiliation. Consider this for a moment: even if every evangelical church in our community was effectively reaching 10,000 people with the gospel and biblical teaching on a regular basis, our community would still be drastically under-served. Or in other words, we need 800 new churches with an average membership of 250 people each to house the remaining people in our suburban context alone!
With the rapid rise of the non-religious and the Christian exile, the task for effective gospel ministry, authentic community, and healthy relationships is an important burden that belongs to the Church. The solution is this: We need more gospel-teaching churches and broader church partnerships, not just in Lake Zurich, but everywhere.
Pray. Give. Go.
Restoration Church exists to be a church-planting church that brings the Gospel to every neighborhood and community we are sent to and present in. Join us in that vision as we seek to lead a movement that restore lives, our communities, and the world through the trasformational power of the Gospel.
- Pray with us. We’re praying for a revival in Lake Zurich, IL and across the Chicago area.
- Give to the mission. We’re raising funds to launch our church for maximum Kingdom-impact. Learn more on how to give.
- Go with us. Jesus didn’t send a few, but all. It’s our call to go to the ends of the earth together with the restorative hope of the Gospel. Join us at our next Sunday gathering!
By the Cross. For the Kingdom.
– Pastor Matt