This is part 3 in the “Steps” series.
Here’s a “big picture” time line of the life of Compass Church, in terms of movement and major turning points.
Year One – Started with 6 adults, added four more and “launched” public services in a meeting place that was hard to find in an area that was not fully developed. Began to understand how the area was growing and began developing strong relationships with the towns of the Alliance, Texas area. Received a couple of awards from two of those towns.
Year Two – Moved from “hard to find meeting place” to Roanoke. Held services in a community center, a public park, a coffee shop [that went out of business after we left, interestingly enough] and a school. Moved to a Saturday night service while we were at the coffee shop. Received more awards from the cities, but we lost people with each move…
Year Three – Outside funding ended, our rent increased [but our attendance didn’t] and we had to leave the school. Made arrangements with the city to rent the Roanoke Recreation Center for worship services when construction on the facility was completed. The goal for completion was August. . So we met briefly in a “storefront” property [more on this later], followed by the building of a supporting church, then in public parks, and for a period of time in homes. [This makes me kind of tired just typing it…]
To add to the confusion, we also had to change our schedule to Sunday nights while in the storefront property and the building of the supporting church. Once again, we lost people with each move [gee…I wonder why? 🙂 ].
We also discovered that the Roanoke Rec Center we had been waiting for would not be completed utill December and not really be available until January of the next year. I believe this is when I sent out an urgent request for prayer through my blog….
Year Four – At this point, we were basically back to square one. Another key family moved out of the area before we ever made it to the Rec Center and honestly I was not sure I was up to the next leg of the journey.
With a “rag-tag crew” and $0 financial support [except for a few family members], we began worship services at the Roanoke Recreation Center. I was tired. I was discouraged. I wasn’t sure my family could take much more sacrifice and wondered aloud to God if I had become worse than an unbeliever for not providing very well for them. Not exactly the mood one generally shoots for when launching a church. 🙂
I had a long, loud conversation with God in the middle of a big field. I asked God if He still wanted me here and could I go home, now please. But I was not given a release from the assignment of attempting to plant a church in Roanoke.
…At least not yet.
Next in this series: “Last Steps”