If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the past four years of church planting, it’s that Ecclesiastes 3:1 couldn’t be more true!
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens”
As I sit by the beach typing this in a season of rest, I am reminded of how the past six months have highlighted Ecclesiastes 3:1 even more in my own life and at OneLife.
Christmas was a HUGE season for us at OneLife. More people than I could have dreamed came to our Christmas Eve services, and the entire month was highlighted by people giving their lives to Jesus and being baptized. It was an amazing season!
Then the winter months came and brought a season of stability. And man did we need it. In the midst of new staff, tight finances, and snowy weekends we found ourselves in a season of plateau numerically, but huge growth spiritually. More people were baptized in the first three months of the new year than all of 2012! On top of that, we put a great deal of effort into improving some core areas, including Kidz and student ministry for the younger ones and worship, home groups and discipleship for the older folks. It was an intentional season that at times was discouraging for me, if I’m honest, because of the “superficial” lack of numeric growth. But God used that to be a season of maturity for me as I learned to truly value what HE values – changed lives!
The results have been God blowing our minds again in a crazy season of growth. Over 800 people came on Easter, our Halls campus started a second service, and our Powell campus is almost back to pre-Halls attendance when they sent nearly 80 people off to start that new campus. Total attendance over the past few weeks is up 25% over the same time last year, leading to more people serving, joining home groups, getting involved in discipleship, and learning to truly worship than ever before.
For me personally, all of these seasons have led to new seasons in my own life. Most recently, I’ve learned that in the fast-paced seasons of growth I have to get focused. So the blog goes silent, meetings tighten up, and focus on my family gets intentional (ie. VACATION!). Otherwise, this crazy ride of changing seasons will get the best of me.
I don’t know what you are going through, but I hope you can take heart in knowing that – good or bad – it’s only a season. This too will pass! And God will bring you through to the next season.
Because seasons come, and then seasons go.