One thing that we love at Awaken Church is a chance to be in the community. That’s how we started the church, actually. After living in Clarksville for only about 2 weeks, we set out each Saturday for 8 weeks straight to a different park for an event we called “Unight.” The idea was getting into the community, sharing our faith, and spreading the word about the church. We grilled hot dogs and burgers, passed out drinks and Bibles, and just hung out with people. We even got to lead a few people to Christ!
Then came Riverfest. That took place the weekend before our first church service. We set up and manned a booth in this city-wide festival by the river for 2 days. We met lots of people and, again, got the Word out (in more ways than one)! We met Stacy and Skyler at Riverfest. Skyler, who’s 5, wanted her face painted, so her mom found the nearest free face painter: Awaken Church. She wasn’t looking for a church at all, but while she stood there waiting for Skyler’s face painting, we told her about the church. She came to service the following weekend (our first service), and accepted Christ!
After being in contact so often with the city about community events, they finally realized that we love to do that, so now they contact us! We helped sponsor the city’s first annual Spring Eggstravaganza a few weeks ago – an Easter egg hunt open to the whole city. They had over 20,000 eggs and thousand of people showed up! Another great chance to spread the Word!
Last weekend was the biggest festival of the year: Rivers & Spires. We were 1 of a few churches that set up a booth to be a part of this huge community event. Denver spent weeks fashioning our very own Skeeball game – he rocked it! Ashley, our face painter, had been out of town for a couple months, but made sure to come back in time to make it out to Rivers & Spires. She is a very talented face painter. No joke – when she showed up, we had a line at our booth for hours! We also had 200 CDs duplicated that we passed out for free – people love a free CD. We pray those are very timely messages delivered to people right when they need to hear them!
One thing I pray every day is that God would use Awaken to wake this city up. We want to make our presence known in this city by being a part of whatever is going on. If there’s an opportunity for us to show up and hang out with people, we’ll be there! I love that about our church, and I believe that’s important for any church. It’s easy (especially as a church becomes very large) to begin to focus on itself more than the community it is in. I pray we never lose our outward focus and always stay open and involved in the community.
How is your church involved in your community?
What have been some effective ways you’ve reached the people on the streets?