We're planting a church Pt.1: A Dream & A Vision
For the past 8 1/2 years my family has had the opportunity to serve Oaklawn Church of God, in Hot Springs, AR, where I served as Lead Pastor. Our time here has been a great blessing. However, over the past several months, we found ourselves seeing a different future for our family, and I have since resigned my position on staff.
Through much prayer, fasting, and wise counsel, God has given us a vision to birth a new church in Natchitoches, LA, the oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana Purchase. As God leads, out plan is to relocate to Natchitoches as soon as possible when our kids finish up the current school semester.
God calls and equips people with unique personalities to reach those no one else is reaching. Today, approximately 20% of our population goes to church weekly. God has awakened a passion within us to focus on reaching the other 80%; including many commonly referred to today as “the nones (those with no religious affiliation)” and “the dones (those who have been in the church, but are now done).”
Aren’t all churches concerned with reaching this 80%?
I pray that they are. But, my family and I have a specific calling to reach people who feel like they “wouldn’t fit” in most churches. We’re not interested in pursuing the same 20% that is often shuffled from congregation to congregation (although we love them). We want to bring people to Jesus who may not understand other ministries and churches. We want to authentically connect with people far from God in such a way that we eliminate the misconceptions they have about church, while keeping Jesus the subject of everything we do. We’re praying for an awakening!
This is why the name of the new church is Awaken Church.
“Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” Ephesians 5:14
God has given us the vision of: “Awakening people to a life-changing relationship with Jesus, and equipping them to awaken others.”