Before I even get started I want to give a shout out to God and Shaun King! Shaun has been working hard in Atlanta to start a church that will “Love God, love people, and prove it!” Yesterday was their “Launch Day” (i.e. their starting point). They had over 600 people in attendance! Way to go God! Way to go Shaun! Courageous Church is going to be instrumental in leading a lot of people to Jesus and doing great kingdom work in Atlanta and beyond!
OK, now on to reviewing what happened at Walls Down Church yesterday.
- We had a “Preview Service” yesterday. A preview service simply allows people to get a glimpse of what Walls Down will be like. We have several preview services scheduled in the coming months. Each of these gathering times gives us the opportunity to share the gospel, outline our vision, and invite people to join the team that makes the vision come alive! (In case you missed it, we were originally scheduled to officially start on this date, but decided to adjust our plan and postpone our start date. You can read about it in this blog post).
- Yesterday we showed up at the YMCA Express to begin setting up and getting ready for the morning and no one was there to let us in! We had the band and volunteers ready to roll but no employee to unlock the door! I was thinking about all of the other places we could meet (from the school down the road to my house around the corner) while I was calling everyone I could think of! Finally I connected with the manager of the Y and he came and opened up for us! Whew!
- Holly Spears and her band did a great job of leading worship! She is an amazingly talented, passionate, authentic, and genuinely caring worship leader. It was great to serve with her and the band.
- Our volunteers did a great job of setting up… even though we got a late start! You guys pulled it off without a hitch!
- I’m particularly proud of Matt Walton! This guy is 16 years old and carrying the weight of all things technology at Walls Down Church. I watched you yesterday Matt when things kind of hit the wall! You didn’t stop thinking and working until you figured out a way to tear down those walls baby! I’m proud of you!
- Every time we gather together like this, we add some new players to the team… and that’s exactly what’s supposed to happen!
Our plan over the next several months is to do at least three more preview services (February, March, and April). During the weeks between Walls Down services, we will be visiting other church plants to give our team a sense of what it looks like to be a “portable church.” It’s different doing church in an environment where you have to set up before service and tear down afterwards, and we want for our team to observe and learn some best practices!
I am learning many lessons along the way as we start a new church, but perhaps the most important lesson is to genuinely be comfortable with this fact… before I am anything (e.g. pastor, etc.) I am a child of God… and that is good.