Awaken Church turns 8 years old this Tuesday.
That puts us in third grade.
Third grade feels accurate. That’s when most eight year-olds can count to 1,000 and understand how 3- and 4-digit numbers relate to each other. It’s also when motor skills are developing well, making sports and competition more than just aimless ball-chasing. Eight year-olds begin solving problems more independently and are growing a lot in their literacy skills.
I’d agree with most of that for our church. The numbers are lining up more and more, we’re developing, growing, working better together as a body, and moving forward in a lot of areas. Church feels a lot less like aimlessly wandering and a lot more like working out and getting stronger.
It’s been quite the journey to get to where we are now…
- We’ve gone from renting a 2,400 sq ft storefront to owning a 6-acre shopping center with 32,000 sq ft of building space.
- 5 of us started the church and now over 800 attend each week.
- We launched Awaken Groups with 3 groups and now there are 21 Groups meeting on almost every night of the week across the city.
- On our opening night as a church, 1 lady gave her life to Jesus. In 8 years, we’ve seen almost 800 people put their faith in Christ and baptized almost 400!
- We went through a “hundred year flood” in our first 8 months, just to rebuild and outgrow our building in 3 months!
- Our staff has grown from 5 people around our kitchen table to 17 people fulfilling roles throughout the church and in the community.
- I’ve taught through 14 entire books of the Bible (and we’ll finish #15 this Sunday!).
- As a church, we’ve given away over $142,000 to local and global ministry partners.
- We have hundreds of people serving on 14 teams across Awaken Church – on Sundays and throughout the week.
- We’ve been live-streaming one service weekly for about 2 ½ years now. Our broadcast “room” (if you can call it that) is an old, converted 6ft x 6ft storage closet that has now broadcasted the Gospel into 74 countries around the world!
- We are dreaming about a bigger building and more campuses around our city, state, nation, and world, but making the most of our 100-seat venues with 9-ft ceilings.
All of that to say this: we are always content, but never satisfied. We are content with our resources, but never satisfied with our reach. No matter what size church we are, we will always set out to reach more people with the life-changing Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Here’s to a new year, but also to many, many more. 8 is a great milestone, but it’s just the beginning.
Till everybody knows Jesus (or we die tryin’!), WE NEVER STOP.
K E V I N • M I L L E R
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