Glory to God, who is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine by his power at work within us; 21 glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus for all generations, forever and always. Amen.“


By nature, we are dreamers. We often find ourselves constantly looking out 6 months, 1 year, 5 years, and beyond. And yet, decision-making for most of us in today’s reality has been relegated to day-to-day and maybe week-to-week. We often feel we have little time to dream about the future for our families, careers, and our faith walk. Our church is not exempt from these feelings. Sometimes we struggle with finding time to dream about the impact our church can have on the ever-changing world around us. That is why it is time for all of us to take a look BEYOND. During the upcoming stewardship season, we want to dig deep into the third chapter of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians. In Ephesians 3:20, Paul explains that God has already imagined more for us as His children than what we can ask or imagine. But does God’s imagination stop with us as individuals? Not at all. God has also already imagined more for His church than what we can collectively fathom. God has imagined more for His Kingdom than what we can handle! How can we live faithfully into a spiritempowered life to go BEYOND the day-to-day into more than we can ask or imagine? God wants us to embrace a concept of “beyondness” as a default way of thinking and existence as a Christian. BEYOND is an invitation to commit to grow beyond one’s current thinking. It is an invitation for His disciples to take the light of the gospel and shine brighter in our city and shine further to all generations. It is God’s call for His people to shine BRIGHTER and LONGER.

A church that shines BRIGHTER and LONGER
must ask two questions:

1. Intensity: How bright can we shine our light?
2. Duration: How long can we shine our light?

How can we shine so that our light doesn’t pause, fade, or diminish, but steadily grows over time. We all are aware of churches that chose to dim their influence so they could shine longer, but weren’t very bright. You may also know of churches that have closed because they only planned to be bright for a short season. Neither of these is the church described in Ephesians 3! What Paul describes is that God wants to increase the light of the Gospel through His people until the end of time! God describes His spirit that shines BEYOND BRIGHT, BEYOND TIME.
  • During this campaign, let’s:
    • Embrace the concept that God wants to have an abundant life.
    • God wants to shine brighter through us than we can imagine.
    • Learn to have the same generous hearts as the Macedonians.
    • Study selflessness beyond expectations.
    • Live beyond the Sunday church experience.
    • Remove the limits we put on God.
    • Imagine the impact this church can have over the next 75 years.

Will you enter into an intentional season of prayer as we discern what God is imagining for SJCC? Will you join our elders and staff as we begin our discussion of what our financial commitment will be for 2024 to help fund the mission and ministry of SJCC today and BEYOND?

Grace and Peace,

Joel Singleton


How have we been shining brighter?

A few ways SJCC has pursued the mission of Relational Discipleship and shined brighter over the last five years include:
• Establishing a partnership with Young Lives to minister to teen moms.
• Tripling the number of people in life groups.
• Building a social media presence with daily faith-based posts.
• Starting a livestream to make SJCC’s lessons available to all.
• Developing a deeper partnership with UCOM Food Pantry.
• Establishing local outreach to the Village Apartments.
• Starting our own weekly Celebrate Recovery ministry.
• Increasing enrollment in Stepping Stones Preschool.
• Hosting evangelistic studies.
• Prayer-walking the streets around the church building.
• Starting small discipleship groups to raise up disciple makers.

How have we been shining longer?

We have also been planning to shine our light longer too. Through God’s grace and the generosity of the church, we have been able to save for upcoming projects. In December, a new roof was placed on the Family Life Center fully funded from our reserves. Unfortunately, over the summer the underground piping that runs our AC for nearly the entire main building began to collapse. We discovered the piping is cast iron, 50 years old and beginning to crumble. This is a significant cost and threat to our church that we couldn’t anticipate. The continual degradation of our piping would eventually cause our worship center to be closed as well as our preschool. We have two choices: We can divert resources from these ministries that allow our light to burn brightly to the community in order to allow our light here on our San Jose campus to burn longer, or we can follow God’s lead Beyond what we can ask or imagine. 

What do we do?

After time in prayer, the leadership at SJCC has discerned that we cannot afford in this time, in this city, to operate with a scarcity mindset when it comes to the outreach of the gospel. We feel God is calling us to hope and imagine Beyond and we are asking you to join us. We also feel this is an opportunity to have our physical space portray the impression we want visitors to come away with about our congregation: warm, inviting, vibrant. While the main building got a major update in the last campaign nearly 10 years ago, the Family Life Center was untouched and some of this space is now dirty and worn.


HVAC System Improvement:
• Replace 50-year-old crumbling piping for the main building AC system to maintain efficiency and comfort.
Roofing Reserves:
• Establish a fund to replace roofs in the near future, ensuring the longevity of our facilities.
FLC Transformation:
• Revamp the Family Life Center (FLC) to serve SJCC needs and become a hub for outreach ministries.
• Replace worn and dirty elements in the FLC, including flooring, counters, paint, and aesthetics in key areas like the Big Room, kitchen, and bathrooms.
• Install floor-to-ceiling movable partitions for creating two optional rooms in the FLC Big Room
• One room for a teen/multi-generational game space.
• Another room for larger classroom space, accommodating groups like Celebrate Recovery, Bible classes, and ladies’ classes.
• Enable flexibility to use additional FLC spaces for larger classes/events without it feeling overwhelming.
Auditorium Lighting Update:
• Replace problematic lighting fixtures in the auditorium with energy-efficient LED fixtures for better visibility and sustainability.
Teen Ministry Update:
• Allocate funds to support the teen scholarship fund for the year 2024, investing in the spiritual development of our youth.
• Furnish one of the new rooms in FLC Big Room with equipment for a game room for fellowship and relationship building (Ping Pong, Foosball, 4-square etc.).
Children’s Ministry Upgrade:
• Update children’s ministry carpet, theming, and curriculum for a more engaging and vibrant learning environment.
Nicaraguan Church Support:
• Provide ongoing training for ministers in Nicaragua.
• Expand and strengthen children’s ministries in Nicaraguan churches.
• Launch a 2024 summer campaign for SJCC members to participate in a mission trip to Nicaragua.
FLC Dining Area Transformation:
• Equip the FLC dining area to double as a theater room for various activities, including classes, Jaguars tailgating, youth group movie nights, and outreach events like YoungLives and Celebrate Recovery.
Enhanced Livestream System:
• Upgrade to a more professional and reliable livestream system for an improved online experience.

Why turn in a commitment card?

Why turn in a commitment card?
One of the goals for any initiative is 100% participation from every family in our church. We encourage you to prayerfully consider completing a commitment card for this initiative. This portion of the journal is designed to help explain the significance (practically and spiritually) of turning in a card.

A Commitment Card . . . 

• Requires a decision over delay; action over avoidance.
• Provides opportunity for personal (self) assessment.
• Motivates a specific increase in one’s generosity.
• Communicates the importance of personal growth in giving (Most important decisions in life are confirmed by written documents).
• Offers an occasion for a church-wide step of faith and commitment (a growth event).
• Provides financial information that enables leaders to make wise decisions.
• Enables church leaders to assess and measure the congregational generosity.
• The card, from day-one, represents the culmination of an important spiritual journey. As important as everything we do is, the card is all driving us to the completion of the card.
• Allows a point of conversation and decision for an individual and couple.
• Provides a timeline for decision personally and organizationally rather than an undefined closure.
• There is power in a physical symbol. Of course, there are a lot of biblical examples of that. I wear a wedding ring as a way of symbolizing my commitment to my marriage. It doesn’t make me married. I could be married without it. But the physical symbol is important to me, it’s important to my spouse, and it sends a message to those who see it.
• A goal when written is much more likely achieved than one that remains in the head. A written commitment makes it real and provides a mechanism for accountability.
• In an age when so many helpful but automatic giving options abound, it is tempting to put one’s giving on autopilot. This can stall one’s impact in generosity. Completing a card allows for the automated giver to reassess their giving level.

This campaign is an opportunity. . . 

for us to understand the “why” of commitment cards in giver-centric language, instead of church-centric language.

Emerging generations of Christians have less interest in the needs of the finance committee to form a budget for the church or the need “to keep the lights on and pay the salaries.”
• What if we all thought of a commitment card in terms of the spiritual check-up it could provide?
• What if we saw commitment cards as an opportunity not to be missed to reassess one’s gratitude to God?
• What if we saw commitment cards as a sign of trust for the future and the joy of joining God in the advance of the Kingdom?
• What if we saw commitment cards as a reminder of the lifegiving, family strengthening and joy experience from being in a right relationship with God’s abundance entrusted to us?

Therefore, we try to call for, and resource, family discussion around the breakfast table, and nighttime prayers—even intergenerational conversations about the purpose and mission for a family to steward both the values and the valuables of the family, even past the current generation. Tools provided in this journal help you to think about ways to grow in your giving journey; not just the amount of your gift from one year to the next. We are inviting you to do this, not because of what we want from you, but what we want for you.

Gift Profile Guide

Dear Church Family, The challenge before us is a large one. This gift profile shows how it will be possible for us to secure our goal for this initiative. The chart reveals that even with the large task God has given us, it is possible to move forward. It also shows that every commitment — no matter the size — makes a difference. As you look at the guide, your eyes will likely settle first on the level you have been considering for our campaign. You can see how that gift will strengthen our faith family and enable us to press forward with our vision. However, before you make a commitment on Commitment Sunday, I would ask you to pray about moving up one step on the chart. Only you know if that step is possible, but I encourage you to open your heart in the coming days to that possibility and let God shape your response.

Yours and His,

Bruce Wilson