I love what we do here on Sunday mornings!  I do!  I love the music.  I love watching people come to faith.  I love all of our LIFE Teams and our Sunday morning Volunteers.  I REALLY love our Children’s Director and Coastal Kidz – haha!  But seriously, Sunday mornings at Coastal is an exciting place to be.  I don’t understand how you would ever want to miss it.  I love attracting a crowd and sharing the Good News of the Gospel with as many people as possible.  Jesus attracted crowds.  There’s nothing wrong with large numbers of people.  The early church grew very large, very fast.

But. . . there is one weakness with a crowd.  It’s hard to grow in a crowd.  You don’t live out/walk out your faith in a crowd.  You need community.  You and I were created for community.  Now, at Coastal, what do we use to live out that community?  What do we call them?  LIFE Groups!  And this coming Sunday, in your bulletin, you’ll be receiving your  2022 Fall Semester LIFE Group Catalog and you can start signing up for a Group!  Actually, you should have already received one in the mail.  Our mantra here at Coastal during LIFE Group sign up is that there are multiple ways to sign up for a Group (online, Connect Card, sign up sheets), but you only have to sign up one time, one way.  And yes, you can sign up for multiple Groups! 

I love our LIFE Groups.  I love the community I’ve experienced over the years in our LIFE Groups.  I love that I have 3 o’clock in the morning friends because of a LIFE Group I’ve been a part of.  I love that I know many of your stories and you know mine because we’ve been in a LIFE Group together over the years.  I love that the first call many people here at Coastal make when they’re in need is their LIFE Group members and leaders – not necessarily me.

Notice what the Bible says in Romans 12:5, “Since we are all one body in Christ, we belong to each other and each of us needs all the others.”  We need each other!  So let me just be as straight forward as I can and tell you exactly what I want you to do.  I want everyone here at Coastal to join a LIFE Group!  It’s as simple as that.  I want to challenge you to make the time, re-prioritize your life, and get in a LIFE Group for one semester, not for life, 10-12 weeks.

You can not grow to become the person God intended you to become on your own.  You need other people.  Once you learn something, you have to live it out.  You can learn about love all week, but it gets fleshed out in the context of community, with people.  Patience, kindness, generosity, faith are all lived out in community, in relationships.  At Coastal, LIFE Groups are the primary vehicle of the church being the church – of living out your faith, of care, fellowship, love, prayer, discipleship.  

This semester, we have 35 different LIFE Groups to choose from – activity Groups, study Groups, support Groups, and more!  There is something for EVERYONE!  Unless otherwise indicated, most Groups begin the week of September 18th and last 8-12 weeks.  Make sure you check out our catalog and start signing up today!   

Pastor Chris 

    Lowcountry Orphan Relief:  
    Lowcountry Orphan Relief provides support services and aid to meet the needs of Lowcountry children identified as at-risk or suffering from abandonment, abuse and/or neglect. Coastal will be serving there, TODAY, Friday, August 26th, 9:30am-11:30am. Meet at 1850 Truxton Ave in North Charleston.
    Chair Set-Up: Come help set up all the chairs in the auditorium this Saturday (tomorrow), August 27th, at 8am.
    Clothing Team: Our Coastal Clothing Team will be organizing and sorting clothes, Friday, September 2nd (and Friday, September 9th), 9am-11am.  Meet at 2952 Old Pond Road on Johns Island.
    Saturday Serve:  The foundation of all of our serving opportunities at Coastal really starts with Saturday Serve – the first Saturday of every month.  The next Saturday Serve is Saturday, September 3rd.  We meet in the Welcome Center/Cafe at 8:30am, project leaders make a “pitch” for their serving opportunity, and then we serve!
    Double Tailgate Day – Charleston Vets & Joseph Floyd Manor:  Saturday, September 10th, 10am-1pm.  Meet at the church and then pick which Tailgate you’d like to serve.
    Soldier’s Angels – We’ll be helping with the Veteran’s Mobile Food Distribution, Tuesday, September 13th, 8am-1pm.  Meet at 1113 Sam Rittenburg Blvd. (The Elks Lodge).

    As always, if you are interested in serving in any of these projects, you can sign up on your Connect Card this Sunday or sign up now on our website.  If you have any questions, please reach out to Pastor Chris Jones at 843-870-4613.
  2. On Sunday, September 18th, Coastal is kicking off a brand new series on the book of Romans called, “A Revolution of Faith.”  It’s going to be a BIG DAY – a FRIEND DAY!  So, pull out all the stops and invite your friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers!  Use the Invite Cards in your bulletin this Sunday to reach out to someone and make the ask!
  3. We are GROWING!  As a result of that growth, I need you to help me with 4 things, especially as we prepare for Sunday, September 18th and the Fall.  Here are the 4:  parking, seating, service choice, and volunteering.  Parking – leave our small parking lot out front for guests and new people.  And then truthfully, park as far away as possible.  Park in Oakland’s parking lot (take a right immediately past the Greenway, before you get to Orange Grove).  We’ll be glad to send the Golf Carts that way.  We’ve still got some space available in the field behind the church as well.  That’s a great option for early, first service volunteers.  Seating – sit to the front and center of each section of chairs.  This makes it so much easier for those with 1st Impressions who are ushering.  Service Choice – our 9:30am service is now over 80% capacity.  We can bring in a few more chairs, but not many.  What we really need is for about 50 people to move to the 11:15am service.  We’re not quite ready to add a 3rd service, but all of these measures will help us in the transition.  Which leads me to Volunteering – to meet the needs of a growing church, requires a large and growing number of volunteers (especially Coastal Kidz).  So, if you’re not serving on Sunday mornings, start serving.  One person, one service, once a month, makes a huge IMPACT!  By the way, these are GREAT problems to have!  Keep praying, keep inviting, keep serving and together let’s “make more room for Jesus!”
  4. The foundation of all of our serving opportunities at Coastal really starts with Saturday Serve – the first Saturday of every month.  The next Saturday Serve is Saturday, September 3rd.  We meet in the Welcome Center/Cafe at 8:30am, project leaders make a “pitch” for their serving opportunity, and then we go out and serve our community  Typical projects include: the North Charleston Tailgate & Clothing Distribution, stocking our Blessing Boxes, Lowcountry Food Bank, Sewing Projects, cooking/prepping 100 meals from our kitchen for SC Strong, and a Children’s Craft Project for our Veteran’s – just to name a few.  Make plans now to come out and be the hands and feet of Jesus right here in our community!
  5. Our church feeds an enormous amount of people through our Community Food Bank.  That’s especially true with the rising costs of food.  If you are able, would you consider donating non-perishable food items (anything really, but canned protein goes really fast)?  And now that we have a refrigerator and freezer, we also take perishables – eggs, meat, cheese, bread, milk, frozen meals, etc.  You can drop off food during the week or on Sunday mornings. Thank you!

P.S. Interested in officially making the Coastal church family, your church family? Our next Membership Class is this Saturday morning (TOMORROW), August 27th, 9-11:30am. You can respond to this email, sign up on our website, or sign up on your Connect Card on Sunday.  You can join us either in-person or online through Zoom.