New Life Church
Contemplating on a community to write about, a particular one stood out to me. New Life Church. This church was founded by Pastor Rick and Michelle Bezet February 4, 2001 in Conway, Arkansas at a shabby car dealership. There are fifty locations throughout Arkansas and one location recently opened in Florida. This community is rapidly growing to spread the love of Jesus Christ through our local cities and across the world. This non-denominational religious organization grabbed my attention immediately because I attended this church occasionally in my hometown recently. Since I’m not a regular member in this society, as an outsider, I would like to learn how it originated, their ideal perception of God and people, and also what makes New Life Church different from other religious groups. The idea of this research will help me, and others get a clear picture of the life of non-denominational associations and if this particular religion is the right fit for your lifestyle.
My purpose of studying New Life Church is to inform young adults how they live by God and to persuade myself or others to want to be a part of this community or not. I am a young adult, fresh out of high school, a freshman in college trying to figure out myself, what I want in life, what I believe, and as of many others are in my shoes too. As a Christian, I feel that finding the right religious group to aid in guidance and support while starting a new chapter in life is important. Life is not easy as we have seen throughout our childhood, and with good times it also comes with tests and trials. I think that having God in your corner will alleviate the rough patches us young people will encounter. If New Life caliber meets my cultural background beliefs, then I would surely consider becoming a member as well as others should too. With this assignment I hope myself and others will take into consideration what New Life Church offers and reflect as if they seem as the right fit as in enlightenment.
Observing this atmosphere was an uplifting experience. Previously, I indicated that I have attended this church sporadically back home which proves I am a newcomer that has so many questions about this community. What I have done to gather information so far is attend their Wednesday study groups, conversate with the college ministry leaders, and explore the ministry’s website. I learned about the study groups through a friend and as I viewed the surroundings, I wrote down my thoughts of the scenery. When I spoke to the U of A NLC ministry leader whom my friend also directed me to, she gave me a lot of insight about the organization. During this moment, I was able to gain plenty of information and noted every word. Afterwards, I went on their website to find how the church began and studied their history. As my research progresses, I plan to interview individual members to get their input of why they choose NLC as their religious home, and as well as finding other ways collecting information to give others a clearer perception of what this church stands for.
Reflecting back to my notes, New Life is a well-rounded sustained environment that anyone can come to for wanting to learn more about God. They believe in valuing the soul. They believe “God’s word is sacred and unchanging”. They believe “the presence of God is vital in everything we do”. They feel “excellence honors God and inspires people”. They believe “Christ followers should be authentic and grow in their walk with God”. They also want to create strong relationships. They want “outsiders” to have a place and people they can trust. They reach out to people frequently through the life group meetings which is the life and blood of the church. Some interesting facts that I didn’t know before, they are a nonprofit organization and assist in a lot of community service projects. They also have a ton of outreaches in each community there located at. Particularly, New Life Church in Fayetteville, the college leader I spoke with stated they feed families living in government houses each month and get to know each of their stories and provide support anyway they can. During the holiday season every year they have “Christmas Malls” event and provide hundreds of gifts to unfortunate families. I also learned that their major event “Connect Classes” is held periodically is for anyone to come and hear more about the church. There values embody through their ministry. Conducting this research, I found intriguing of how many people attend on average. They attract about 900 people per service on Sunday’s and also have student ministries starting at middle school through college. This is important because reaching out to all age groups and not one age group is great. Now that I have gathered a good amount of information thus far, I feel confident as my research continues.