Covenant Grove has a Youth Pastor candidate! This is obviously big news in the life of our church. And I have found that it is never easy when God is doing big things in the life of a church. The Lord likes to stretch and grow us when He answers our prayers, so that we will trust Him more.
Two years ago, our church averaged about 170 people a week – and we stood on the edge of a big moment. God had opened up a way for us to be able to buy property, below market price. Our church members had to vote to approve the purchase. This was a hard decision because we had to raise the down payment – $150,000 – in just 3 months. We also then had to be able to afford the mortgage – which we could not do, based on our current giving. This was a big moment in the life of our church, and it really scared a lot of people in our church.
In prayer, we chose to make the offer on the building and property. God raised $160,000 in just over 2 months – more than we needed in less time. We can afford our mortgage and we are already dreaming about adding onto our current building. In the last month we averaged 270 people – 100 more than 2 years ago (almost 60% growth). Our church saw God leading, we were scared, but we stepped out in faith and have seen the Lord move in powerful ways.
“For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn’t believe even if someone told you about it.” (Habakkuk 1:5; Acts 13:41) This verse has proved true, again and again, at Covenant Grove.
We are at another big moment, right now. As we consider calling Alex Hardt to be our Youth and Young Adult Pastor, we are on the edge of another scary step of faith. Alex is an amazing candidate. We were hoping for someone with a college degree and 2-3 years of experience in growing a ministry. Alex has almost completed his Masters of Divinity and has over 10 years of experience in growing ministries. He even coaches and encourages other youth pastors. God has once again given us so much than we asked for.
This is an exciting and challenging time for our church. Adding a full-time staff position (a first for us as a church) is a step up. We will again need to be faithful, generous, and sacrificial in our giving. We will need to pray a bunch. And we will need to grow as a church. Our heart is not to grow to be able to afford our budget, our heart is to hire the staff we need to be able to reach lost people.
So pray for our church. If you read this and you go to Covenant Grove, be ready to be challenged. God is challenging and growing us as a church, and we are in this together. If you don’t go to Covenant Grove – well, first let me say thank you! Keep us in prayer – and be watching for the ways that the Spirit is growing and challenging you, in all things drawing you closer to His heart of love for you.