When we came to Austin, it was our dream that we would join Jesus as he goes about starting house churches all over the city.
We are so excited to let you know that we have started our first church in our apartment community! We just had our second gathering this last Friday night.
Some may struggle to call what we do “church.” Nevertheless, it is church. Some would struggle to call what we do “church” because Sara and I are the only Christians, but we believe Jesus’ definition of Church is where two or more are gathered in His name.
Holding a church gathering with 2 Christians and 2 not-yet-Christians makes for an interesting Friday night.
Next week I will share what our gathering look like. This week I’d like to tell you about how this church was started.
We believe true “Christian mission” is always birthed out of Jesus’ initiative. Its kind of like a movie where the lead character tells his supporting role to, “follow my lead.” We simply pay attention to what Jesus is doing, and then join him there.
This is our strategy for planting churches. Its pretty simple really. Anyone can do it.
So here’s how it all happened…
We were going around visiting our new neighbors (for more on this see our Welcome Visits post) when we met a young couple about our age. As many couples do these days, they have been dating for the last 3 years and living together for most of that time. They have an 8lb pomeranian dog who hit it off with our little puppy Jack. The 4 of us hit it off as well. Throughout the conversation, they discovered that we were doing these visits because we are Christians. Over the next few weeks we kept running into them at the apartment and eventually they invited us to come join them for dinner. At dinner they asked us about our spiritual lives and about our church. He mentioned that they had tried a few churches, but none of them ever took. He grew up Catholic, but has never opened a Bible and is Agnostic. We told them that we start house churches. They were really interested in discussing that.
It was obvious Jesus was starting something special here.
Next, we invited them to have dinner at our place. We had a great time laughing and talking with each other. We made plans to do all kinds of fun stuff together over the coming months. The next week they invited us to go hiking with them at Enchanted Rock. So we got in the car with them on Saturday and made the 2 hour drive out to Enchanted Rock. We had a great time hiking, talking, telling stories, laughing.
Later that week, the girl texted Sara to tell her she was struggling with some personal issues, asking Sara to pray for her. We did. She was also on a job hunt, so I pulled my resources and helped her look. She ended up finding a job on her own, but appreciated the help anyway.
She later asked Sara what church we went to, and that she might like to try to go. We reminded her that we start house churches, and asked if they would like to start one with us.
They were thrilled about the idea, so we set a date.
Next week I’ll tell you all about it.