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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

When No One Shows up to Your Church Plant


Since starting our church last October,

my biggest fear has been that one Sunday it will just be Dave and me and the girls.

Dave.  Preaching to us.  Alone.


This is not been a reality for us.

But I realize it will always be a possibility.

My prayer is that I will always remain joyful and thankful.

For 3 people.

Or 2,003.


As Christians, we are so quick to measure church success numerically.

We do silly things.

We host big events.

Count new converts.

And throw those numbers out from the pulpit.

We think we have a louder voice if we are bigger.

And there is some truth to that.

We are louder.

But what are we saying?


The Lord has been convicting me lately.

And teaching me.

Humbling me.

Instilling in me a new fear.

That I should have had all along.

That no one would come to know Him.

How sad would that be?

How pointless?


In church planting, it's really easy to get wrapped up in logistics.

The technicalities of a mile-long "to do" list.

Feeling like we are needed for church to go perfectly.

Feeling like church has to go perfectly.


Last Sunday we sang a Christmas carol.

"Oh Come Let Us Adore Him."

In June.

In the middle of a heat wave.

The "big church" in me was screaming.

Internally warring against my traditions.

"It's 110 outside.  Why are we singing this?!"


But, I have to say.  It was incredible.

Pure, amazing worship.

A reminder that we are to not only celebrate Him in December.

But every day.

The story and celebration of His redemptive birth and life is the purpose of church.

A story told to a congregation of 3 people.  Or 2,003.


And although I pray otherwise,

even if our little family ever finds itself alone at Sunnybrae on a Sunday morning.

We are never alone.



  1. Really cool Jess. It's so important to keep things simple, and it's hard to stay focused on the cross when you have that mile long to do list looming over your head sometimes. Thanks for the reminder!! :) PS. looking forward to the women's meeting tonight.

  2. I heard a great quote once and have clung to it many times since: "Never doubt in the darkness what God has shown you in the light." Theres no better place to be than at the center of His will. So keep your chin up,Jess. They will come:)
    I think another part that adds to the worry is that you're probably doing alot yourselves...the preparation, the preaching, worship leading, hospitality. Its alot of responsibility on your shoulders. I know this because although our church is the hub for worldwide Bible Schools(in 95 countries!), missionaries and correspondence courses, an on site Bible college & K-12 school, etc... here at the home base we're few in number. Each person fills numerous roles and it would be very easy to get burnt out. So in addition to those prayers for new people, pray for the right people. Those who will come alongside you and your husband to help build the church up from the foundation. Who will share not only the duties but also the prayers and the burdens with you as well. True prayer warriors.
    Heres a virtual hug for you(xo). Praying for you guys!

  3. Amen. I love our little church. And I love the way God challenges us to see things differently. Like Christmas songs in June.

    Little lessons in grace popping up everywhere.

    And I also love that Victory in Jesus gets played on demand.

    Can't ask for much more than that! :)

  4. The Tuckers would be there too but I've definitely worried that it would just be our two families :)

  5. Every time I read that verse it is like, "BAM!" and so in my face.


  6. do you know how much I love this post?! there are no words. so true, friend. I love your heart

  7. That verse is where it's AT. Love it.
    God has big plans, always.
    You and your family are serving the Lord,
    and thanks to Him that we are never alone.

  8. love that scripture. love his post. my heart is full for you. what a difficult and beautiful calling y'all have answered. press on, my friend. xo

    Psalm 57:7
    My heart is steadfast, O God,
    my heart is steadfast!
    I will sing and make melody!

  9. love that scripture. love this post. my heart is full for you. what a difficult and beautiful calling y'all have answered. press on, my friend. xo

    Psalm 57:7
    My heart is steadfast, O God,
    my heart is steadfast!
    I will sing and make melody!

  10. So cool to see your faithfulness. When Shiloh was a youth pastor at a small church I was so impressed how he he and 3 high schoolers made a worship band. And they practiced and prepared and sang. Sometimes there were only a few kids. I told him they were playing for an audience of one and it was so inspiring what they put into it regardless of how many kids showed up. Press on Sister.
    See you on Thursday!