Like most churches, we have basic Biblical core values that define us: a love for God and our neighbor, a desire to grow in our relationship with Christ, prayer, outreach, service...these are things that ALL followers of Jesus should have in common.
But churches also have unique characteristics -- distinctives that shape their personality and make them who they are.
Here's how we'd describe LifeBridge:
We are not a "production/performance" kind of church. Our services are simple and informal.
Everyone takes their turn at helping to clean the building, mow the lawn, and help out where they can.
Instead of a long list of programs you can attend, we tend to gather more informally, around a meal and good conversation. We look out for one another, share life together, and serve the world around us together. It feels like (and is!) a family.
From the moment we launched in the fall of 2008, we've been a very outward focused church. We've always been light on programs, and instead pour ourselves into people.
We especially have a heart for the hurting and broken, which has led us to beautiful ministries with the homeless, teenage moms, and refugees, as well as many others.
Our prayer is that we are always a "going" and "sending" church, as we represent Jesus out there in the world.
Arguably our most unique distinctive is a goal we set of giving away 50% of any offerings given to us. We strive to run the church on 50% and give the other 50% away to missions, local ministries, individuals that need help, etc.
While that means we often have to do without some of the nice things we'd love to have for ourselves, it has also opened up tremendous opportunities for us to help people in need and help new ministries get launched in the Cypress area.
It has been a challenge at times, but most years we have been able to meet our 50/50 goal!
We love the space that God has provided for us at LifeBridge. Our worship space is simple, but comfortable.
At the back of our property is a mission home that welcomes in refugees from all over the world.
The rest of our campus is half camp and half farm -- with barnyard animals, a large garden, orchards, a fishing pond, campfire pits, and all sorts of outdoor games and activities.
Much of what we do is outside in God's beautiful creation.
Pastor Michael is the founding pastor of LifeBridge Church, and has been leading this group of Jesus-followers since 2008. He has been a pastor for over 25 years, serving at churches in San Antonio, Colorado Springs, and here in Cypress.
He and his wife, Julie, have been married more than 25 years and have three children: Caleb, Courtney and Joshua. Julie is certified as a Spiritual Director with Leadership Transformations Inc, and serves alongside him as a vital partner in ministry and life. Mission work, and ministries of care and compassion are very close to both Michael and Julie's heart.
Their family has fostered children through Loving Houston, a YWAM ministry that provides loving homes for street babies. They have taken numerous overseas mission trips and worked extensively with local refugees from a variety of nations.
In addition to serving as pastor of LifeBridge, Michael and his family also started Abba's House, a community of welcome, healing, and hope for refugee women and children.