When I was younger, growing pains were a regular occurrence for me (as you might guess). They would keep me up at night sometimes, and would hurt my legs and arms during the day. Although I never enjoyed them, I learned to embrace them, because the pain reminded me that something good was happening: I was growing!
Ever since the flood wiped our church building out in May of 2010, we’ve been experiencing growing pains as a church. We maxed out one building and moved to the next, then added a second service, a third service, and now a fourth. Within a couple months of adding our fourth service, we added 1,200 square feet onto our kids’ space, then we filled that up in 3 weeks! Over the last 3 weeks, we’ve seen the 2 highest-attended weekends in Awaken’s history, and unfortunately, we’ve had to turn quite a few kids away from Awaken Kids because we were out of room. These are all good problems to have, but they’re still problems, and just like growing pains, they can be painful.
Throughout Clarksville and the surrounding areas, we’ve joined together as a church this week to pray that God would provide a bigger building for us. We would be happy to add a fifth weekend service, if we thought that would alleviate any problems, but it’s just not feasible and won’t fix the problem. The Refuge prayer team and a few others joined for an hour of prayer at our current location today, walking through each room in the building, asking for God to give us a bigger building and thanking Him for the ministry that’s taken place in our current spot. It was amazing to join hands and hearts with people from many different places and backgrounds (some who got saved here at Awaken) as we pray for God to provide.
In the mean time, we’re praying for patience and wisdom to endure the growing pains. Beginning this weekend, we’ll be adding a second Awaken Kids check-in station, to alleviate the check-in line. We also have some additional overflow options that we’re putting into place this week – for kids and for adults. The 10:15am service is the biggest crowd, so if you’re a faithful Awakener, you could help out by going to one of our other three weekend services. Either way though, we’ll be more prepared this weekend than ever before to handle as many people as possible.
Whatever you do, don’t stop praying, don’t stop giving, don’t stop serving, and don’t stop bringing your friends (we’ll fit them wherever we can!)! God is doing exciting things, and you won’t want to miss this season at Awaken Church!