View from on high
Summit Christian Church
I am fascinated by the way religion has modernized. As I’ve said in the past, my primary experience in edifices of spirituality was in Catholic churches. I only bring this up so people will know where I’m coming from with my amazement of things they probably consider old hat. But these evangelical Christian churches’ style, vibe and grandeur can sure get the heart pumping.
Summit Christian Church is no exception. You’ve probably noticed it on the left on your way out to Pyramid Lake. Caroline Lush, a member of the stellar sales team here at the paper, invited me along to service Sunday. We attended the 11 a.m. worship.
The church is a huge two-story structure, a massive vestibule wrapping around the gathering room. There are staircases and rooms of various purpose scattered around. The colors are modern and solid with bold blues and browns. There’s a shiny stained concrete floor and mission-style furniture.
Outside the main meeting hall, there are two counters. The Starting Point offers information to people who are new or returning to the church. The Connecting Point has news about the various ministries and other topics of interest. The Hearthstone Café is at one end of the foyer. At the other end is Base Camp, the Summit Ridge Christian School, for the kiddies, near as I could tell. The youth ministries and services were held on the second floor.
The worship center was also massive. I tried to count the straight-backed, comfortable, cloth-covered chairs, but with the people obscuring the edges, I can only guess there was room for about 600 people—and that’s without squeezing anyone. Thematically, the colors worked with those in the vestibule, but were more somber earth tones with shades of brown. There was a broad stage at the front with a six-piece band and six singers led by Kurt. Hanging on the wall to stage right was a dark burgundy wooden dove. Balancing the left was an unadorned crucifix of the same wood tone as the dove. As a backdrop on the stage, there were colored, stacked squares, looking a bit like a ‘70s variety show set. There were three large screens above the stage.
Music plays an emphatic part of the service at Summit. With a full band, including two percussionists, bass, keyboards, bass and several guitars, the place was definitely making a joyful noise unto the Lord. While the music had a driving rhythm, it wasn’t what you’d call rockin', although it was on the upbeat side of traditional. The lyrics flashed on the screen, and the mostly bluejeans-clad congregation sang along and swayed with the tunes.
The topic of the sermon was “When Our World Crumbles.” It was given by Pastor Steve Bond, who used Genesis 37:12-28, the story of how Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery, as a sustaining metaphor.
I can’t offer all the details of the medium-long sermon (about 40 minutes, I’m guessing, although I wasn’t watching my watch), but there were four principles that rose out of it. When our life crumbles—we survive a life-changing event like getting fired from a job, or going through a divorce or a move—we need to remember God has a plan; to draw nearer to God; to release the past and embrace the future; and to forgive those who hurt us.
Summit Christian Church is the sort of evangelical Christian church that would appeal to people who like their traditional worship tempered with a modern flair. It’s a very comfortable place for families where just about everyone who catches your eye will introduce themselves.
Want to take Brian to your place of worship? Call 324-4440 ext. 3525.