I have experienced the goodness of God. My husband and I married 8 years ago this summer. There is much that could be said about our first 6 years of marriage and where we have been, but that’s a story for another day, so, I’ll fast forward to the weekend of July 4, 2014. Both of my parents had just retired from their respective roles and we had just said goodbye to the church community, at Christ Our Savior in Coppell, we have loved since 1987.
We were newly settled into a fixer-upper in Coppell, a gift, from God. Our search for a home ending with the perfect price, location, and size that without God’s intervention we would not own today. Having been outbid several times for smaller homes at the top end of our price range, a connection because of friends resulted with this gift.
It’s a sunny, Texas-summer morning we arrive at a movie theater in Grapevine to check out what’s going on with this young, Lutheran church plant called The Vine. The word that kept running through my head all throughout worship was “home.” That day, we realized God had both given us a place to live and a community of believers. What we didn’t know was that God would use both of these things to send our family on mission.
Here’s what we now understand because of our community at The Vine. Our home is to be used as a place where our neighborhood gathers. So, here’s what we did. I started a Friday morning playgroup for parents in the neighborhood during the day on Fridays. We have a neighborhood park, and I set a time and reminded people every week to meet me there. We started a monthly Saturday morning coffee shop. Free coffee and an opportunity to get to know our neighbors. We planned and helped host the neighborhood night out.
Through all of these things, God’s goodness prevails. We are meeting our neighbors, and they are asking, Why are you doing this? Who is paying for this? Here’s what we say: We want a safe neighborhood. We want to be the house with the yellow door where Jesus is known and neighbors are loved and cared for. We want to know if our neighbors need our help. We want to be able to ask for help, too.
Some months ago, my phone rang. The number on the caller ID was one of the moms whom I’d met at the playgroup. “Rachel,” the husband said, “we need your help. My wife is having a miscarriage, and I need to take her to the hospital. Can we drop the kids off until our parents can get here and take over?”
God is using me to share His goodness with others. My family is called, and changed, and blessed because of it. My prayer is that my children see our family living out the goodness of God to others and know how to be the Church to the world around us. How is God calling your family to live on mission?