This is a big week for our family. We spent the last week in Alabama. We spent this week packing up parts of our home. We were sent (commissioned) to London by the Summit Church this morning. Now Thomas is heading to England this evening for a week and a half.
Here's a little more about all that is going on...
Sent From Summit
The Summit Church has been a vital ministry partner over the last year of preparations. Today we were prayed for and sent to London to begin the work of planting this new church. In all four worship gatherings - across all of the campuses here in Raleigh-Durham - we were prayed for, encouraged, and sent. We really love Summit's emphasis on "Sending." It embodies the essence of the gospel, "For God so loved the world that He gave..." and the commission of Jesus Himself, "As the Father has sent me so I am sending you."
It is hard to estimate where we would be in this process of preparing to plant in London without The Summit Church. The Summit Network is Summit's exclusive think tank, training center, and church planting residency. Summit has a goal of planting 1,000 churches in a generation and is well on the way to seeing it fulfilled.
The London Launch Team
Perhaps the sweetest part of being where we are today is the fact that we are surrounded by friends who have become family to us. At the heart of the group are the Evans who we initially dreamed up this idea of London with. From there, the launch team has grown into this team of 17 adults that totals 25 people when all the children are added in. Together, we are trusting God to provide jobs, visas, and opportunities to move to London and share the love of Jesus with people we will meet there.
God has done a work in putting this group of people together. At the broadest point of interest we connected with 75 people who considered joining us in London. After multiple interviews, a written assessment, prayer and discernment, and a vision trip the team now consists in these who are called to London and trusting God for the next step. We are not special. We are not super-spiritual. We are simply trusting our unknown futures to our known God and believing that He wants to use our little lives to accomplish wonderful things in His world. Together, we are happy to be a link in a long and strong chain of everyday people trusting our extraordinary God to do more than we could ever ask, think, or imagine.
There's more to come surrounding our relationship with Summit and the work that lies ahead. For now, a simple update and a whole-hearted "Thank You!" to the entire Summit Church family for sending us. We love you!
We realize that we didn't provide an update last week around Easter. We were on the road to-and-from Alabama to visit with family and friends. We spent a couple of days in Montgomery, Easter with the First Family, and had a refreshing time. We will try to keep the weekly updates coming in the days ahead.
Pray With Us
Would you continue to pray with us in the week ahead? There are a couple of big items in the works...
Selling Our House - Praise God that our house is currently pending! We are under contract and working on the necessary paperwork and due diligence processes. If all goes according to plan we will close on our home on Thursday May 16. Thank you for praying for us on this front. Rejoice with us and pray for the work that is yet to be done!
Thomas Is Headed To England - Pray for Thomas as he leaves tonight to spend the next 11 nights in England. He is speaking at a college ministry / young professionals gathering at Cambridge University on Tuesday, having final meetings with friends in London, preparing for the move, and hosting Biltmore Church. Lots of good things going on and prayer for safety, energy, and wisdom is needed.
Elizabeth Is Keeping Us Moving - Pray for Elizabeth and the kiddos as they hold it down in Raleigh and do a lot of the necessary working of preparing for the closing on our home. In the midst of all of this, we will not be together on Elizabeth's birthday (Monday 29 April) and have a long to-do list with only a few weeks to do it all. We are thankful for our friends on our launch team rallying with love and support. Please pray for the majority of our family that is busy in Raleigh!
Know that we are praying for you as we invite you to pray with us. We cannot go at this alone and we are under no illusion that it is us who are making our way to London. Empowered by the grace of God, we are doing this together. Thank you for praying for us, for "holding our arms up", and encouraging us as we work together to plant this new church in London. We are in this together!