Last Sunday we got to have a practice gathering at Lucy Read. It was a lot of fun. Our goal is to keep it as simple as possible. Our set up and format is fairly basic because the sum of who we are as a church is more than an 1-2 hours on Sunday. This is just one part.
Overall it went really well. I think everyone had a really good time and it was fun to look at scripture with one another and sing out in worship. Thanks to everyone who helped out!
This Sunday we will be meeting at Lucy Read for the second time as a core team and we are going to try to provide for the children, sing a little, and maybe, just maybe look at some scripture. We are going to set up sound, speakers, and even have a trailer. It is a small step for our core team but a huge step for North Village Church. It will be messy, unorganized, and maybe even chaotic but it will be fun.
As a group we challenged one another to invite some friends to share the experience. At first, we have some hesitation because we aren’t really sure “what we are inviting them to” because we are still making this up as we go.
Our second hesitation is that it can feel a little awkward inviting a friend to church because it can feel like “church” is the end goal in mind. However, church isn’t the end and honestly church isn’t just something we do on Sundays. Church is something that takes place throughout the week and what we do on Sunday is just one part of it. Therefore, we are inviting our friends to come and experience one part of our lives with them.
If we hadn’t invited them to lunch, a movie, over for dinner, etc., then, well they are probably not really friends, but if they are then this is just another part of our life as we look to share our lives with others.
In the end, it will be a lot of fun. All of our equipment is either used or has been given to us and could possibly break down in the next 3 months but I feel like we are a part of something special and hopefully a new church will start we will continue to see something different
This Sunday we will be meeting at Lucy Read for the first time as a core team to get a feel for the inside, pray about what God wants to do in us and through us, and dream about what it could look like. We are really excited!
There has been a passage that I have been reflecting on in John 15:
1″I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. 2 He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes[a] so that it will be even more fruitful.”
Toward the end of the apostle Paul’s life he writes a letter to a man named Philemon. Philemon had been intimately involved in the Colossian church and had built a reputation of being a man of character in the community. In the letter the apostle Paul goes on to affirm Philemon’s character and refers to him as a refresher. Leading me to consider, “What if the church was refreshing?”
Recently started reading Philippians. We are going through the book as a core team and going through it with one of our neighborhood gatherings. I have always thought of the theme revolving around joy and just quickly concluded the joy was in reference to Jesus. Kind of that whole “Jesus loves you, be happy” kind of thinking, but it seemed there was always a disconnection. I would read that Jesus loves me, but I didn’t always “feel” joy. I still believe Jesus is the focus, however, recently seeing the practical part of that joy is found in how we live through Jesus.
10. Unless you like being tired, don’t start a church. I don’t mean tired like I need to get a nap, but tired like my brain is spinning with about 100 ideas of what we could do and how we could do what we are doing better. See what I am say’n.
9. People are messy. Including me. Honestly if everyone would just do what I want, when I want, and the way I want it then we could knock this thing out in no time, however, that is not reality. Reality is that people are complicated and no matter how charismatic or passionate, you can’t make anyone do anything for any length of time. Nevertheless, if you try to do this on your own it is impossible or will lead to a really boring church.
This is a question I am starting to get lately. Never before did I wish that I grew up playing the guitar to get girls to talk to me. I could have a one man show that was all about me.
This is one of our challenges right now. There is a part of me that believes it will all come together and it will work out fine, however, there is another part of me that believes I am being naive and need to have more urgency in this area.
As I have spent time with people over the last 10 years I have seen a common misconception of who God is. Due to our life experiences, background, family, and religious influences it seems there are at least 4 myths of God:
Santa God: This is that God that we turn to when we are in trouble and we need him to come through for us. We will call out to him in desperation to get a house, car, spouse, job, etc. Or even call out to him on more serious matters like the health of a loved one, relational conflict, or financial strain. We crawl up into his giant Santa God lap and let our requests be made known. When we find ourselves about to get a speeding ticket we think to ourselves, “Santa God, if you let me go with a “warning” then I will be good for the rest of the year.”
In October Austin will host one of the largest music festivals in the country. This year will have well known musicians like Pearl Jam, Beastie Boys, Dave Matthews Band, and up and coming artists like Flogging Molly, Phoenix, and Black Joe Lewis.
Dropped off the paper work today for the school. It isn’t 100% done but it is moving us in the right direction. Our hope is to solidify some dates in the summer for us to provide “previews” and work our way toward a weekly gathering in September.
The school has some limitations as a location but overall we are excited about the opportunity. It is the only Pre K school in AISD and primarily serves low income families.
I am in a network of churches in Austin and our vision is to saturate the city of Austin with new churches. Our goal is to have 5 churches have a shot at starting in the city every year for the next 5 years before we re-evaluate.
Our plan was to go to Exponential (a conference for those interested in starting a new church) and make connections with those who might be interested in coming to Austin and partnering with us in our vision to saturate Austin.
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”.
In the next month we will be taking step to purchase a considerable amount of audio and visual equipment. This is tough because it is expensive.
On one hand we don’t want to waste money but we don’t want to purchase low quality equipment that will break and burn out or purchase equipment that we will hopefully outgrow. Meaning a microphone and a boom box only gets you so far.
We have already started 3 neighborhood gatherings and hopefully start another in the next week! Neighborhood gatherings are simply getting our friends together to explore spiritual truths. It isn’t a formal process but something we encourage one another to initiate naturally so that we can create casual environments to explores spiritual truths with our friends.
Our hope is that neighborhood gatherings would take place throughout the city.
Well, it isn’t just to have another church. There are plenty of churches, but our thought was that when Jesus spoke creation into existence and then stepped out of the heavenly realms and entered into human history that perhaps he intended more for us then just showing up on Sundays at 10:30 am.