September – December: Easiest mistake in starting a new church is to simply go with what is on the surface. Culture is deceptive and so are our emotions, intellect, and desires. Instead of making a quick decision we spent many weeks praying through neighborhoods, talking to people, spiritual conversations, and getting council as we waited for Jesus to show us where. We wanted to spend adequate time seeing what God sees before “doing”.
January: Invited new friends, old friends, and sometimes strangers to consider taking ownership of seeing a new church birthed in the city of Austin. This was one of the more difficult stages because wanted to be careful to cast a compelling vision, but more so we wanted the Spirit of God to move people to this vision.
February: Focus on vision and gospel. We would meet weekly to discuss our vision and the importance of the redemption and restoration that takes place through faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is / was important that this first shapes us before we look for it to shape others.
March: Activity. We spent a number of weeks meeting weekly as a team, praying, looking at scripture, and learning personalities, but we needed some activity. Our culture is “do” oriented and we wanted to put that off as long as possible, but by March we needed to start moving toward “doing” something. For us our two specific tasks were 1). Living on mission as Christ-followers in our everyday lives. 2). Hosting a dog fair. Remember we had been studying the culture and specific area for over five months by this point so it was time to “test” some of our observations. Ultimately our desire is to see a church birthed out of this community.
In the next few months we will continue to meet in homes, look at scripture and wrestle with this calling of living on mission. It has been a blast so far and we look forward to what Jesus is going to create in us and through us.