Saturday Reflections: October, November, and Now
Saturday Reflections are an attempt to keep this blog personal, relational, and real. These posts will be thoughts, a recounting of the week, and where I see things going in the weeks to come. Join me and my family on our journey in Jesus.
In my attempt to keep things up to date on the blog, I think it’s important to catch everyone up on the developments that have been going on the last several months since posting has been so sparse.
In the early part of October we journeyed with several families from Cedar Rapids to Kansas City to be a part of Rock International’s Tribal Gathering. For those of you who don’t know, Christy and I were significantly impacted by The Rock of Kansas City during our time there, and often we journey back to Kansas City in October to reunite with old friends and catch up with what Jesus is doing with them. We had no idea what was waiting for us.
The Rock had invited Jeff Vanderstelt from Soma Communities and Acts 29 in to immerse their whole tribe in the Gospel intentionality that Soma Communities has been living out for several years. I think we were all struck by the simple but profound ways that the Gospel had shaped and compelled their communities and we all came back from Kansas City with a desire to experience and demonstrate the Gospel in a more real way. For me two things became increasingly clear: it’s time for our house church to multiply and one of those house churches (the one I’m going to be part of) needs to be intentional about reaching Wellington Heights (the neighborhood I’m part of).
So we came back to Cedar Rapids and began trying to articulate the incredible shifts in thought and practice that the Lord was speaking to us about. In the midst of all of this, I also had the awesome privilege of welcoming my buddy Josh Hulme to Cedar Rapids and helping him and his (then future) wife find work and a place to live here in Cedar Rapids. Josh, lead by Jesus, had an apartment and a job after being in Cedar Rapids for only two weeks. He returned to Kansas City to marry his fiancé, Alyssa. After getting married and honeymooning in Branson, they returned to live in four blocks from us. Josh and Alyssa also feel called to Wellington Heights, so they’re going to be a key asset in helping us plant a house church that is attempting to live out the Gospel here.
To be honest, all of this is exciting, but for me it’s been stressful as well. While some elements of this transition have been very clear, other parts of it have been very confusing. Through it all, I’ve felt pressure to know and understand what God is doing with every part of this transition, and I just don’t. I’ve been thankful through this process for the friendship of so many people who have been encouraging me to trust Jesus more than my own understanding. If you’ve read this far, pray for us. We’re attempting to balance the need of community and discipleship with the need of evangelism. Pray that we walk behind Jesus and don’t just wait until we understand everything.
One thing is clear though: God is developing our understanding of what it means to both be a spiritual family and to be on mission at the same thing. I’m learning the importance of seeding vision in people long before the need. I’m learning the need for investing in people much sooner than when I “need” to. The things we are learning now will help us in the future to multiply house churches.
Next week, I’ll try to be more specific about this coming week. For now, pray for us, that God would be glorified as we try and send out believers to plant churches all over our city. Also pray that Wellington Heights would begin to be invaded by the Glory of Jesus.
In much need of Jesus,