Our C2C Family is recently being stirred by the idea of mission through open homes. Our call is to be both salt and light. Salt has to have contact to make impact. As people are able to get close to us in real life, what Peter described begins to happen.
1 Pet 3:15 MSG Through thick and thin, keep your hearts at attention, in adoration before Christ, your Master. Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy.
Patty Fajkus from Kirksville MO is a great testimony about how seeing God’s life lived out among His people who were neighbors lead her to becoming a pillar at Life Church for many years.
Years before I became part of the family of Life Church, I spent time just observing their family life. One might wonder how family life can be observed when you’re not part of the family. The way it happened for me was at New Place apartment complex that was affectionately referred to as the “commune”. I happen to live in this complex, and several of the other apartments were occupied by young families and singles who were part of Life Church. The apartments were fairly small and a good part of life was lived out in the shared yard that had a creek running through it and a great sled riding hill just a stone’s throw away.
Often my roommate and I would talk about how these families lived life. The families were always together; sharing meals I found out later, these were the days when church families traded around $20 from one family to another as needs came up. These were the days when conversations centered around the early church and what the church should look like today.
My friend and I attended a Baptist church and were quite committed. However, we both had friends who were part of Life Church and would attend once in awhile just to get what we called a “shot in the arm”. We loved the worship and friendliness of the people. There was definitely something different about their worship that caused my heart to long for more but really had no intentions of making Life Church my church.
After my roommate got married and moved, I was invited to a Wednesday night Life Church Home Group. At that time I was a single professional who worked a lot and was also working on a masters degree. My focus was on moving up the career ladder. Not sure why I even agreed to go to Home Group other than the people were really great. Now I know God was putting a hunger in my heart for more than just a career. There was no pressure to come to Life Church on Sunday, so I attended my Baptist church on Sunday and Home Group on Wednesday nights. Home Group for me was like a weekly family reunion, there were times to catch up on what’s been happening with everyone, worship and teaching, and always food. Can’t have a family reunion without food.
I began to see a group of people who really loved God and each other. These wonderful people were attempting to live life serving and laying their lives down for each other. Being around them began to change my ways of independent thinking and self centered approach to life. One evening I caught myself calling my Home Group leaders to tell them I would be out of town and wouldn’t be there on Wednesday. All the while I’m thinking to myself, why am I calling them, they don’t have to be notified of my plans. But, God was putting a hunger in my heart for more of Him and His people, the Church. Life was becoming less about me and more about Him.
Well, the rest is history. Who could ever dream that watching families picnicking and living life together could change the course of my life. But it did and for that I will be eternally grateful for those early days at New Place Apartments.