Sunday, July 23, 2006

church visits GR - part 1

Last evening (Saturday) we went to Hastings to pick up our 9 year old Kate from kid's camp. She had a great time. Believe it or not, one of the most exciting things for her was the opportunity to ride a school bus on their trip to the lake. She had never been on a bus before and now one of her lifelong dreams has been fulfilled. As a kid, the small joys are often the greatest!

We then scooted quickly up towards Grand Rapids to visit the 6pm Saturday night service at Kentwood Community Church. Senior Pastor Wayne Schmidt caught sight of us in the lobby and came right over. He said, "Joel, you're the second pastor on sabbatical who has walked through the doors tonight in the last 5 mintues." I guess this was the place to be for pastors on the run!

KCC has an amazing worship center and Wayne provides such gentle and loving (and yet firm, visionary and strategic) leadership for this outstanding church. One of the highlights of the evening was an introduction and commissioning prayer for a new Wesleyan pastor in town. I love it when we get to do those kinds of things at Faith Church (giving blessing to other ministries and church plants)... but Kentwood has for many years demonstrated an unprecedented generosity in sending its people out to be part of new works for Christ. Thank you Wayne for your unselfish Kingdom mindset.

For me personally, one of the things I enjoyed most about the service is that it was Saturday night. There is something that I have always loved about the feeling of an evening worship service and the prospect of going out with friends and family afterward...followed by a lazy Sunday morning to sleep in. I guess I have Saturday Night Fever! Statistitically however Saturday night services don't attract nearly the crowds that Sunday morning services attract. It will be a challenge for us at Faith as we discern which direction to go with our 3rd service option in the future. Stay tuned and be praying about when you would like to see an alternative worship venue take place.

But you won't be surprised to learn that we did NOT sleep in on Sunday morning. We crawled out of bed bright and early to drive back to GR for one of the more unique worship options found in all of Michigan. A worship idea that is sweeping the nation and may even have an affect on our future at churches in Lansing. I'll tell you all about it tomorrow.