I shared a few months back that we seemed to be having a mass exodus of leaders moving out of state due to job changes. It really wasn't all that many people but when you have 6 Intentional Communities and the leaders and/or hosts from 3 of them move, it can be a scary challenge. As I mentioned in that blog, God gave me an unusual peace about it all. Usually I freak out about these types of things. We have a hard enough time raising up leaders as it is. But God is so good and thankfully he is sovereign. I don't have to know his will or figure out his will in order for his perfect will to be done.
We're about a month removed from the last leaders to leave and not only are we surviving, we seem to be thriving. Chase and Kyler Phillips and Chris and Rachel Croft were fantastic leaders. The mark of their leadership is that when they left, and before they left, new leaders were already stepping up. Of course it's not without challenges, but it's been cool to observe from a distance how the groups saw the challenges, embraced the challenges and are growing through the challenges. Praise Jesus! We lost our host, Deidra Delgado, to a move to South Dakota. It gave us the opportunity to move back to a mission field we had thought was not going to bear much fruit and already we're seeing opportunities and open doors. God knows what he is doing!
The two prayer requests I want to leave with you today are the following:
1) Pray for more Intentional Community Leaders & hosts. We had 94 people at our gathering yesterday and we only have 5 Intentional Communities. That's simply not enough groups to assimilate people into community. We have also had an interesting influx of soldiers and families from joint base Lewis/McChord. We need to see an Intentional Community birthed there. I have ideas of who could host it, not idea who would lead it... but God knows! Please pray for open doors.
2) Pray for volunteers to step up in September. We are spoiled in the summer because we don't have to set-up and tear-down our worship gathering because school is not in session. Well, school starts next month so we are recruiting volunteers and developing a new system with new leaders. It's always a challenge because when it comes to gatherings, people often just think it happens. They don't realize all the work and prayer and preparation that goes on behind the scenes to provide an environment to worship without distraction, a hospitable culture that welcomes new folks in and a children's environment that safe and engaging. We're in the recruiting process now and it's natural to be getting excuses! Please pray that our people would be so passionate about worshipping Jesus together that they would be willing and executed to rearrange their routines to make it possible. Please also pray that by this time next year we would be launching a second worship gathering so that even our KiDCity volunteers would be able to gather for worship every single week.