Who is in your community that your church is currently not reaching?
For whom is your heart breaking?
With whom might God be inviting you to engage in life together?
These are the kinds of questions that we begin to ask as we consider what it looks like to move from the Steeple to the Streets. At the National Gathering last month, we posed these kinds of questions to the participants. Their responses give us a picture of the wide variety of people and groups and networks that God is inviting the Church to engage with:
- Spanish speakers living around our church
- International students without support, networks, or tastes of home
- Butler Terrace community—a low income apartment community
- African American leaders of Atlanta
- Nepalese/Bhutanese Refugees
- Young families in new developments around our church facility
- Meredith Center
- Celebrate Recovery
- Singles—those who want to be and those who don’t
- Teens and young adults
- Latin American immigrant families
- People in Recovery
- Nepali families
- Central African families
- Those impacted by opioid addiction
- Fitness enthusiasts
- Those impacted by mental illness
- Working poor
- Single moms
- Abuse victims
- People with chronic illness
- Single parent families
- Anyone without a connection
- Mentally disabled
- People in the marketplace—owners, employees, suppliers, customers
- The LGBT Community
- Trinity neighborhood
- Business community
- Gastonia, NC
- Racially diverse neighbors
- Families with children living below the poverty line who have no access to preschool or healthy food.
- Mosaic District of Northern VA
- High School students
- Middle School students
- Haiti St. residents, Warrenton VA
- People in substandard housing in my community
- People in my community far away from relatives
- The Brightmoor neighborhood, Detroit MI
- Lake people (50-60 year olds) who are “Dones”
- Young adult “Dones”
- Trailer park communities
- Retired neighbors
- People who are navigating the court system
- Homeless veterans
- Soccer families
- Restaurant workers
- Motorcycle community
- Marginalized people
- Artists using their art to fight for justice
- 2nd and 3rd generation Korean/Korean Americans
- Zo people from Myanmar
- Chin tribe from Myanmar
- Mizo tribe from Myanmar
- Pan-African refugees in Clarkston, GA
- Young parents
- Spiritually homeless people in Suwannee, GA
- Skateboarders in our parking lot
Each of these represents a context in which a fresh expression of church may be better able to make the gospel real and relatable than our existing churches can.
What if 62 fresh expressions of church made a journey with Christ accessible for people who were able to discover God’s love?
What if 62 fresh expressions of church gave disconnected people an experience of deep community?
What if 62 fresh expressions of church allowed hope to be visible in a world where hope seems far away?
And what if 62 fresh expressions of church are just the beginning of what God is doing and will do?
Will you join us in praying for these 62 potential fresh expressions initiatives, and for the countless more that God is putting on the hearts and minds of His disciples?