Monday, 9 November 2009

The SUDDENLY increase

Well the news is out, we are now one church in two locations- Tyneside and Teesside. What started as a "What if..." conversation nearly two months ago has now become a reality. Now that the announcement has been made the hard work actually begins. The euphoria will die away fairly soon and the practicalities will settle in. We are adopting a child into our church family. How will the older child react when it doesn't have it's parents' full attention anymore? How will the new child react to the new structure, new name and new parents? Sometimes it is not even the big changes that can cause the most discomfort, it can be the little things that we hold on to the most dearly. I love the quote by Catherine Booth that states "There is no improving the future without disturbing the present".

We want to take people on this incredible journey with us and will do our best to help people but the journey is going to happen and some people may choose another journey or settling place for themselves. I still struggle with people doing that, but am learning that if my heart really is to build people then sometimes we are not the ones that are best suited to do it for them. We can get so distracted by people leaving when it maybe the best thing for them to help their lives grow.

I can tell you honestly that we, as the new parents, are trusting God because we definitely don't feel confident in our own strength. So far, as a church and as pastors, we have kept steady and fairly constant growth. So we have been able to increase our capacity as leaders to accommodate what God has brought our way. Suddenly we have added about another 90 people to our care. That is responsibility from God and it scares me. I'm so glad I don't have to do it in my strength. I am learning more & more to trust God as He places me out of my depth.


  1. Dear Jon,

    You just have to love God's timing about these things. Was at a Regional Celebrate with NFI Churches in Yorkshire this Saturday. I think the heart of what the man preached about in many respects is similar to what you are facing.

    He spoke about Mark 1:35-39. The gist of the entire thing was that when his disciples found him, they exclaimed "Everyone is looking for you!" and were obviously thinking back to the town they had just come from where Jesus had healed the sick and set free the possessed.

    Instead of going back to the town though, Jesus knew his purpose and was looking ahead saying "Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come." Jesus was looking ahead to the next villages (and as the Pastor said, the remaining 15 chapters of Mark). This pastor also proclaimed that sometimes it was the very people that everyone wouldn't want to go from a church that sometimes are the ones that God is calling to leave it.

    Keep keeping your eyes on the things of God, not the things of Man.
    God Bless You.
    Amy Soyka

  2. I love what you say about being the parents! As someone wise once said to me, "you are the best parent for your children!" Simple yet poignant!