On June 1st of 2009, Donnie Paschall (Vertical Executive Pastor) and I began a fast seeking God for direction concerning the discontent and stirring within our hearts. One of the overwhelming leadings that we both individually sensed during that time was that God was not only calling us to start a church (GULP!!!), He was calling us to start a church that would start churches. We felt that God wanted to use this future ministry to reach people throughout our region. We felt that this was about more than 1 building. I cannot believe that in 10 days we will be 1 Church in 2 Locations.
I am excited about this opportunity that we have to meet in Lumberton AND at Bladen Community College.
What kind of preparations have we been making to be ready for this paradigm shift within our ministry?
- We have been purchasing equipment, securing finances, designing signage…
- We have been planning campaigns, making preparations…
- We have been thinking through systems and making sure that we understand what makes Vertical, “vertical”.
- Last night we had 2 bands rehearsing at our rehearsal space. 2 locations means 2 excellent, Vertical Worship’s.
- We have been training and empowering leadership to lead Vertical Bladen in a “vertical” way. We are making sure that our vertical dna be the same in Bladen leaders that it is in Lumberton leaders.
- We are striving to be as ready as we can be. Will there be challenges? Absolutely! But we will deal with them as they come. This is about 96 thousand people – people who don’t attend anyone’s church.
One of the things I am most excited about is our Bladen Location Pastor, Joey Autry. I BELIEVE IN THIS DUDE!!!! HE FIRES ME UP!!! I know that God brought Joey into our ministry from this reason. The moment discussion began about him joining our team we recognized that God was probably bringing him to Vertical to TAKE VERTICAL BACK to Bladen County. He is equipped, prepared and ready to help people in Bladen County who don’t like church meet God!
This weekend, as we close our series, “BIG C, little c”, I will talk more about how we will be 1 church in 2 locations.