Happy First Birthday, LifeHouse!
LifeHouse Community Church, in Fort Erie, ON, celebrated its first birthday on January 7, 2018!
When Todd and Julie MacGregor first trusted God's prompting to plant a church from their burgeoning small group, Todd recalls how every step of faith and trust taken was accompanied by that "I don't know what I'm doing" feeling.
One year later, to a growing community of 45+ people, Todd celebrated God's faithfulness to LifeHouse Community Church in a birthday sermon aptly named: I Don't Know What I'm Doing.
As a church plant, we continually needed to "de-program" ourselves from any preconceived notions of "this is how we do church" in order to free our community to grow out of how God is leading us specifically.
LifeHouse's willingness to stay formative and sensitive to the Spirit's specific movement among them has led to fresh endeavors like their G2 Strategy, an in-house developed plan for sharing the gospel with their surrounding community. The strategy emerged as they asked of themselves collectively: What is the story of the gospel in our lives and our church body and how do we best communicate that to the people around us?
In this new year ahead, LifeHouse will focus on giving the gospel to their community, and also giving to the community, like the gospel calls us to do.
Todd shares some of the highlights from their first year and the celebration service:
We are excited about what God is doing in our family and we’re very thankful for what God has done in this past year.
Back in September we changed locations: we moved from a Saturday evening service where we rented a church in our community to meeting on Sunday mornings at Bridgewater Golf Course, in their banquet hall that seats 200 people. Bridgwater has graciously offered to set up for us (chairs) and have coffee ready and you can imagine in the early stages of a church plant how awesome that is. In fact, on this anniversary Sunday God showed us special favour: the golf club provided us with our own waitstaff and access to their brunch and we were able to offer the entire community a free brunch buffet after our anniversary service. It was a beautiful celebration of community.
Over the year we have seen growth from 25 to now 45 people. But what we are really excited about is that we now have a leadership team and we are shaping how God is calling us to reach people in Greater Fort Erie--one relationship at a time! We believe our call, our mission, is to give the gospel and make disciples in Greater Fort Erie and now our leadership team is praying and crafting a strategy of how we are going to do that. It was beautiful to see all of our leaders share unscripted and freely about their passion for God's church on this anniversary Sunday.
I am also so thankful for the unity that we have as a church at this stage. There is an understanding of who we are and what we are called to do--and that is so vital!
We've also started what we call OpenHouse every other Sunday night, a space where we dig deeper in the Word and pray together. Someone from our church will just open up their house and anyone and everyone is invited to come. This is something we have seen well attended and have some great feedback about.
We want to see Acts 2:42-47 lived out in our community:
They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
I love this church family! God is always good! LifeHouse is so thankful for all the support from New Ventures. We couldn’t do it without you guys.
New Ventures like these help expand God's kingdom, one intentional community at a time. Pray for God's continued hand of favour and guidance on LifeHouse.
You learn more about LifeHouse Community Church here and you can support this New Venture financially, through Canada Helps @ the Central Canadian District Office.