Today was the culmination of a dream, and the beginning of a journey. We officially launched Discovery Church today at Farragut High School in West Knoxville. Here are a few thoughts as I reflect on the day:
- I am honored and overwhelmed at the passion and service of our volunteers. They make Discovery Church what it is. Setting up sound, lighting, video, nursery, Discovery Cafe, Discovery Kids, signs, cleaning…then tearing it down and packing it up – all to make Discovery Church and environment for people to invite their friends and family to discover life in Jesus Christ. I am privileged to be your pastor.
- I couldn’t do this. God gets and deserves all the glory. It is a testament to His infinite grace that someone like me could be used to lead this new church.
- I love our “In Rhythm” series. (The video of our service will be available Monday morning sometime.) Our first 5 weeks at Discovery are dedicated to establishing the Rhythm of our church. The Rhythm of our church is constructed by our core values and how we live them out. We started off by establishing our first, and preeminent core value: Biblical preaching and teaching that is applicable to your everyday life. I encourage you to listen to our message on why we believe Biblical authority is so important to the foundation of our church, and our own personal lives.
- The worship is great. We know that worship isn’t limited to the 25 minutes of singing…(hint we’ll talk about this next week in Part 2 of In Rhythm) but singing and music is a big part of our worship, and Brad Lowery along our band do a great job of leading us in worship.
- We’ve got to get a monitor setup in the Cafe to let everyone know when the service is starting. This is a good thing because it means people are getting connected at Discovery Cafe. Paul and Annette Woodward – along with JD and Ashley Self have created an exceptional environment were people can relax and enjoy some coffee, pastries and conversation.
- I must have received a dozen texts, tweets, Facebook notes and e-mails encouraging me from people who were lifting us up in prayer today. I even received a message from a pastor in Long Island, New York that I don’t even know. He was praying for us today. Amazing.
- I’m excited to see what comes of our 545 (5 minutes for 5 days) challenge. The 545 is a Bible study we’ve created to go along with our weekend messages to help people go deeper in the Word. The challenge has been issued for people to read the Bible daily for 30 days.
- The inclement weather was a factor, but we still had a great showing of 100 people at our first service. We’ve been averaging around 125-50 in attendance over. Another sign of God’s working as we haven’t had a marketing budget or campaign of any kind. Just personal invites and some Facebook activity. Keep investing and inviting.
- I love my wife, and all she does for me – not to mention her work with Discovery Kids.
- There is more, so much more. I’m thrilled to be on this journey. A few years ago I was sitting in North Point Community Church just north of Atlanta. I wrote a little note to myself. All it said was: “Someday, Sunday”. It was a reminder for myself that someday God would use me to plant a church where people far from God could come and discover life in Jesus Christ. Today was Sunday.
We’ll have the video and 545 Bible study online shortly.