Archives For it’s worth it

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Two Cities Church just hit our Two Year Anniversary at the beginning of October. If you’ve been tracking with us for very long you may be asking, “Wait, it’s been like 4 1/2 years since you started talking about Two Cities Church.” You’re right. We spent just over two years building our team before holding regular services, before officially launching. So it’s been two years since we launched every week services, that’s when we were born.

I get calls and emails from would-be church-planters asking about our experience and I love talking to them. It really fills my cup when I can pour out whatever I’ve learned through this process and what I’ve learned from others. So if that’s you, don’t think, “Oh, he’s probably too busy to talk to me.” I’d love to talk with you.

Every few months I write a post about why it, church planting, is worth it. These are moments of clarity. These are events or WINS that help redefine and underscore why what we’re doing matters and I got an email last week that reminded me and our entire team why we work so hard to create a church that unchurched people would love to attend. Here’s a portion of that email:

Attending your church was an amazing experience. I’m feeling a little lost and in a weird place in my life right now. When [my friend] was struggling, she found Two Cities Church and I saw the difference that you made in her life. On Saturday night when she asked me if I wanted to go to church with her, I was hesitant. I was born and raised Catholic but I struggle with some of the stories and beliefs. I haven’t practiced my faith in a long time because I felt that Mass was always so somber and I also wasn’t sure what I truly believe in. [My friend] described your church to me and it was so different from my past experiences. She convinced me to attend. I am so glad that I did. The love, sex, and dating topic is something that I can actually relate to. Your talk really resonated with me. Two Cities is a wonderful, supportive, caring group of people. Being in the weird place that I am in life right now, I feel that a group like yours is exactly what will help. Thank you for changing my view on what church can be :).

That right there. That’s why we do what we do and that’s why church planting and creating churches that unchurched people love to attend matters.

That’s the mission. That’s a win.

If you wish you could bring your skeptical-haven’t-practiced-my-faith-in-a-long-time-friends to church with you. I got some good news, there’s a bunch of churches around the world trying to be a place, just like that. And if there’s not one in your area… start one.

See where they are here: North Point Network Churches.

It’s been one year since we launched Two Cities Church into every week Sunday services. We had been networking, fundraising, and praying for what seemed like forever. It took us 6 years of waiting, praying, seeking, listening, learning and dreaming, plus two years of ground work, to get to our launch day. We were filled with expectation, curiosity, and nerves on that day. I remember being a ball of nerves. I don’t get nervous, but on that day I was. We launched with a vision message that we called #WeAreTwoCities. One year later, we took a look back and celebrated what God has done. [You can listen to that here or on our iPhone app.]

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These photos were from our One Year Anniversary after party. See more Photo Booth pictures from our One Year Anniversary here.

After one year, a lot of heartache, ups and downs, changes in our team, changes in the faces that volunteer and attend and more… I continue to say, “It’s Worth it.” It being church planting that is FOR our community and the people in our community. But here’s the thing, it’s worth it because Jesus said with his actions, “You are worth it.” When he spoke to people the religious leaders avoided and he forgave people who didn’t deserve forgiveness and he taught and healed and loved… he communicated that each person, each individual is worth it all. And ultimately, when he died a gruesome and embarrassing death, he did that to pay for the sins of each “worth it” person. You and me.

When I say, “It’s worth it” — it’s worth it because of the stories depicted in the video below, and many more untold stories that have arisen within our community at Two Cities Church.

I know I’m right where God wants me and I can’t wait to see what he does in and through Two Cities Church in our second year.

It’s Worth It. Part 1
It’s Worth it. Part 2
It’s Worth it. Part 3
It’s Worth it. Part 4
It’s Worth it. Part 5

icedtea

I met with someone I haven’t seen in 12-14 years yesterday.
He bought me Starbucks.
He asked me questions about Two Cities.
I answered them and listened to some of his story.

Without telling his life-story, let me just say a few things about him. These are simply details about him and not meant to be a complete description of him.

He’s worked in the 18-34 “market” for the last 10 years of his life. He’s had a myriad of jobs. He has a son, whom he loves. He just came out of a long-term relationship. He just started a new job, on top of his other job and recently went back to school. He’s 5 years sober thanks to AA and his lawyer. He loves metal music, but also plays classical guitar. He has a relationship with Christ, but he hasn’t been to church, of any kind, within the past 5-7 years.

Why not?

Bigotry.
Judgement.
Hypocrisy.
Unloving.
Unattractive.

After hearing what WE are doing, he stated:

“I’m very interested in what you are doing.”
“There are tons of people waiting for something like this in Fresno.”

Yet again, it was confirmed in our conversation that Fresno and Clovis doesn’t need another church, they need a different kind of church. The kind of church that unchurched, de-churched or over-churched people would love to attend. The kind of place I can bring my friends who are not interested in Jesus and have their expectations completely shattered, in a good way.

Our mission is to lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ by creating environments that encourage people to pursue intimacy with God, community with other people and influence with the community around us. Those are three vital relationships and I wholeheartedly believe what we’re doing matters and It’s Worth it.

Come and hear more about Two Cities Church at our NEXT event, RSVP on Facebook.

It’s Worth It. Part 1
It’s Worth it. Part 2
It’s Worth it. Part 3

dessert
Last night at our Launch Group we asked the question, “What would it be like for you to cross the dessert just to tell someone some great news?”

Several people shared about how being involved in a church plant is a dessert for them, because they left stability for uncertainty. One of our younger guys spoke up and said:

Before you moved back, I barely went to church and when I did it was when my parents were singing in the choir. I went to show them my support. But I didn’t want to go. Then I found out you moved back and started Two Cities. Then you texted me. I came to launch group and now I’m really excited to be here. Thank you for moving back and starting Two Cities.

I needed that. My response was:

Don’t make me cry man.

What we’re doing, even though it can be very difficult, Is Worth It.

Want to be a part of something like that? Let’s talk.
Come to a our next Launch Group.

It’s Worth It. Part 1
It’s Worth it. Part 2