As you may have noticed, I have not been as regular in posting to this blog as of late. I apologize for that, but God has been doing some incredible things in my life and I want to share with you what's been going on.
I started my 12th year as a Children's Pastor this summer. Prior to that, I was actively involved in Children's Ministry as a volunteer for about 5 years. So for about the last 17 years I have lived and breathed ministry to children and families. But this year God started talking to me about a different sort of ministry path and yet in some ways...it's not different at all.
He has called me to plant a church, but not just any church. This church would be geared to reach people who have never really ever been to church before. It would strive to remove the common barriers that tend to keep people from attending church if they have never been a part of a congregation or once they are have gotten out of the habit of attending. It would be basic in it's teaching so that the entire family could learn together and no one feels "talked down to" or out of the loop. The environment will be fast paced, active and totally family friendly. Everyone learns together. The family unit is taught as a whole in one place in ways that everyone understands. We will sit at tables and chairs and the tables will be covered with butcher paper and manipulatives, allowing for activity even during times of listening. The service would be multi-sensory so no one type of learning is excluded or, for that matter, exclusively used. It's a whole new way of doing ministry and I am beyond excited about it.
God called and I listened, but I will admit that I was terrified at first. I mean, I never expected to be a senior pastor...ever. But when God speaks we have to listen so I started out on this journey. I started praying...I started talking about what God was impressing on me with friends who immediately jumped on board and started encouraging me. Then, I started talking to my District Superintendent about this a few months back and he also could see the vision I was sharing and encouraged me. Every door that I expected to close in my face has opened wide as I have continued to walk down this path. Last week, our District Advisory Board approved the plans for this church plant. Yesterday, I got an email from my General Church telling me that the plant was officially registered with the denomination.
So, I am excited to share with you all that I am now the Pastor of the New Vision Church of the Nazarene in LaGrange, IN. We will have our Open House/Launch Party on December 17th and then on January 8th, 2017 we will hold our first service. If you'd like to check out New Vision, please see our Facebook page.
This journey has been more amazing than I could ever put into words. I have never in my life had such an experience. I know the days ahead will be challenging, but I also know that God is going to do some incredible things and I'm thrilled to have even a small part of His plans.
Next week, I'll go back to my regular "Tuesday's Tips", but this week, I just had to share what God has been doing.
Until next time...