An Open Door

November 28, 2006 — 3 Comments

The job I was hired to do at Christ’s Church doesn’t exist anymore.

On November 5th the leadership team of Christ’s church announced to the congregation that we were not going to proceed with our plans to launch a new alternative service on January 7th. The new service was going to be called, “The Well” and it was going to be real, relevant, relational, and refreshing. It was also the reason I was hired.

I had developed a strategy. Our plans and our team were coming together, but everything changed on Tuesday, October 31st when we experienced–what we all now consider a “God-thing.”

We believe that God showed up in that leadership meeting and convinced all of us that a separate alternative service was not what he wanted us to pursue right now. Instead, we became convinced that God wanted us to pursue a united effort to reach our community and that The Well had the potential to inadvertently divide us at a time when we really needed to be united.

After a few more meetings with the Elders and the staff, a lot of prayer, and a couple more meetings (just to be safe :)), we decided to postpone our plans for The Well and focus on how we could unite our team and bring some of the positive elements of The Well to the church as a whole.

On the following Sunday we ended the service with a passionate time of commitment, prayer, and singing.

It was pretty amazing.

The leadership of Christ’s Church senses that something special is happening.

We are convinced that we are at an open door.

Last Sunday, Tim Smith, a member of the preaching team, shared the results of a demographic study with the congregation. The leadership team conducted this study a few weeks ago and we were all stunned by the results.

Look at this picture of the 10-mile radius around Christ’s Church:

The red section represents the households within a 10-mile radius of Christ’s Church who claim to have “no faith involvement.” This picture shows that 40%-45% of the households within a 10-mile radius of Christ’s Church have no faith involvement at this time. This area is projected to grow explosively in the next 5 years.

Tim gave everyone a copy of this image and asked everyone to begin praying that God would use us to reach these people and that the blood of Christ would begin to cover every portion of red on that map.

We believe that when God led Christ’s Church to an industrial park a few years ago–and it seemed that they were moving to the middle of nowhere–God was positioning Christ’s Church to make an enormous impact for the Kingdom in one of the most unchurched areas in all of Florida.

We also believe that our efforts to move through this open door as one–with a united effort and purpose–is also a part of God’s plan for his church here in southeastern Jacksonville and we can’t wait to see what he does next.

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3 responses to An Open Door

  1. 

    Wow, Arron,
    That’s amazing…
    How can BASIC help you guys acheive community penetration? I couldn’t really make out the details of the graph, but have there been other studies to show income, household size, or the better question is, who has those numbers??
    See ya A-Dawg..
    GB Hoyt

  2. 

    Guess this brings true illustration to the “when God closes a window He opens a door” saying (or saying similar to that). As a member of Christ’s Church I am more excited than ever to see us not only be presented with this new door but to have a leadership team in place that has the courage to walk through it.

  3. 

    Hmmmmm…that’s a good way to look at things, Arron. I’ll try to remember your faith-based example the next time my plans “go sideways” as they say in Canada (I watch a Canadian TV show called “Davinci’s Inquest” and wind up talking like those guys after a while, eh?)

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