Tuesday, June 09, 2009

First Sunday Report & Pics

This last Sunday was a first for Grace Church. As in it's first Sunday. We will be meeting in our home until our "official" launch at the Rio Vista September 13th. It was so amazing watching our team transform our house into church! They came and moved out couches, arranged chairs and moved tables upstairs in our loft for Children's Ministry. There wasn't a room in our house that went unused! We had around 50 people! A couple of them were unbelievers too. Chris preached on the Gospel as being central to the foundation of Grace Church. I had worked all week trying to come up with a plan on how to make children's ministry work. I was concerned with the noise level of the kids during the message. I'm happy to say that was not an issue. The kids stationed through our different bedrooms, music time, craft time, snack time & story time. Afterwards everyone stayed for dinner. One of my favorite parts of church planting, dinner together after church! Being I had only planned on 30-40 people for dinner I was a little concerned but God stretched out the food and only one guy on our team & myself didn't get a full sloppy joe.

Here's just one story of the many crazy ways God has been at work:

Sunday morning we are at Costco picking up more chairs for church and items for dinner. We are trying to get through the check out. Chris has a massive amount of chairs in his cart, I have a cart full of bulk food items and at the same time I'm trying to keep the three kids from knocking over dad's chairs. I say that to say our only goal at the time was to get through Costco with no major scenes and to get home before our set up crew arrived. The lady begins ringing us up and says to Chris, "Are you starting a new congregation?" Chris, kind of caught off guard, told her we indeed were. She then asks, "Does it meet at night?" Chris confirms. She then goes on to say her friend, who's loading up our cart, needs to find a church that meets at night. Chris strikes up a brief conversation with this lady, gives her a Grace Church card and directions to our house. We went out to load up the car and having two cars, Chris tells me to go on ahead. He felt lead to go back in and talk with the lady some more. He was glad he did they ended up talking for awhile. Long story short, she got saved on Easter and due to working every Sunday morning she hasn't been able to find a church. She came Sunday night, cried through Chris' gospel message and was ministered to by members on our team. She called us yesterday to thank us for inviting her and after talking with her unbelieving husband about her experience, he has agreed to come back with her next Sunday night!! Wow. Could you ask for a better first Sunday?!

I was not able to take any pictures that day but knew there were others who would. Here's a few my friend Sarah took:

Chris addressing our set-up team

Beginning of worship... filled up a little more as time went on

Here I'm going over our craft for the afternoon. Do you like the example? I made it :) Seriously if you know me you know how NOT crafty I am. I lost more sleep that week over this silly creation mobile craft then anything else! But I conquered my fear and the kids loved it!

Here's a couple more:

This is going to be a fun summer!! Thanks to everyone for all their prayers and support!


megan russell said...

exciting stuff. it is so awesome to see the house that God provided for you all. it is perfect for the church!

CarrieLovesKeith said...

Okay, seriously, I cry every time I read your blog now! :~)

It is so exciting to hear about all the people you guys are sharing the gospel with... I am so encouraged by how you and Chris share even when it's not easy or convenient (and how you joyfully released Chris to talk to the lady, taking 3 kids and lots of heavy Costco groceries home by yourself... no small task!) I am so encouraged by your and Chris' example of demonstrating that the gospel is worth all of the sacrifice... opening your home, making dinner for tons of people, being interrupted on your huge grocery run, and all the many other ways you are willing to sacrifice! We love you guys and miss you!!

"Summershine" said...

Wow! What a great start to a wonderful church! That story is amazing. Even when we are not actively approaching people, God is at work and sends them to us! That is so awesome!! What a perfect story to begin the flame that will turn into a blaze of Grace Church.

gin said...

totally crying tears of joy for your costco experience! God is so amazing!! as awesome as it is to get into your facility, the sweet moments you are encountering as a house church are unrivaled! we miss our house church (california days) a lot. envious (in a good way) of your church planting experience!