We’re planting a life-giving church and there’s nothing like it. It’s tough to describe everything that’s involved in giving birth to a church in a place that has a need for a vibrant, growing, healthy church. Yet I get asked questions all the time along these lines. They look something like this:
- How do you get people to come to your church?
- What do you do with your time? Do you have another job too?
- How do you survive financially?
- How are things going? (Questions like this are progress report inquiries and are often the toughest to answer because so much is immeasurable!)
- How does all this work?
I know answering them is part of what we’re doing – and we enjoy talking about things with folks! But the deeper answer to all of this takes more time to explain.
The answer lies in our story. Not just the story of the Brown family moving to Knightdale but the unfolding story of our team – people who are joining us financially and/or physically. The answer lies in what it means to live life on the edge.
Disclaimer: if you’re living comfortably in life right now, this post will probably irritate you. And if you’re living life on the edge, you’ll probably turn this post into fuel that will continue to drive you toward your destination, whatever that might be.
Our Personal Story
The story of the Brown family moving here is quite simple: pretty much our entire lives were flipped upside-down. It’s like the Fresh Prince of Bell Air – his life went from living in the ghetto with his single mom to living at a gorgeous estate with his Uncle, Aunt, cousins and butler. Everything he and we knew changed in an instant.
In early 2014 our lives were comfortable. We had a steady paycheck, solid health insurance, a great new home, friends and family nearby. Everything was comfortable.
But God had different plans. He wanted to take us to a new place in life and getting there demanded that we risk everything. He wanted us to live life on the edge.
Later in 2014, God called us to a place where we knew no one. We had no health insurance, no steady paycheck, no income, no guarantees. We had to relearn everything – where to get a great haircut, where to get great food, which mechanic shops to trust. Heck, we still use our GPS to get around! We are 100% outside of our comfort zone as a family but confident this is exactly where God would have us.
Our Team’s Story
There are many who, like us, are living life on the edge. There are a number of families who moved with us down here, leaving behind the richest, big-award-winning county in Northern Virginia. There are some who have left jobs. And it goes without saying that the entire launch team is leaving behind everything they knew to chase something bigger than themselves.
There are also many who are giving financially to The Edge Church. These critical people are also teammates – people who have courageously stepped forward. There are college students, single moms and unemployed people who have given sacrificially. I’m reminded of Jesus’s story of the woman who gave two small coins. She gave so little yet it was all she had to live on. Wow! That’s living on the edge!
God has a pre-written story for your life, too. If you’re breathing then God has a plan for your life! A few thousand years ago, Saul participated in many killings of Christians. Despite this, after Saul gave his life to Christ (and was renamed Paul), he wrote:
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. (source)
In light of his past, why would Paul say something like that? Because God has a specific plan for each of us, despite our past.
King David, who’s life story included an affair and murder (among other things), wrote a wonderful poem about God knowing us even before we were born (source). He wrote that God knew us even before we were born – every complexity of our lives and our yet-to-be-discovered story!
God has a plan for your life too. And for those of us who consider ourselves Christians, it’s inevitable – God will call us out of our comfort zones in order to take us to that place He wants us to get to. “Faith” by definition requires a risk: it’s an evidence of things not seen.
But Christian or not – God has a plan for our lives and it’s going to require a risk for us to get there.
In my next post I will be an invitation for you, our readers, to live life on the edge so that you can get to the place God has for you. In the mean time, I challenge you to wrestle with how God is calling you to live life on the edge. Where have you sought to protect and to maintain control? Where have you stepped back instead of pressed in? Where have you settled for good when God desired for you to get to great?