What makes Vertical, "Vertical"?
Is it the lights? The rocking music? Could it be the more casual dress? The free coffee out in the lobby? Why is it that people are flocking to see what Vertical Church is really like?
Every week I feel like I am seeing a dream come to pass. I'm seeing people come to Vertical who normally would never have given church a chance. They feel like outcasts, outsiders. Many are broken emotionally and spiritually. They usually believe in God but they just can't find the bridge that leads back to Him. Often, before the 1st song is even sung their eyes are filled with tears.
Why? They haven't heard a song, the bible hasn't been read, nothing except for pre-service music. I believe it's because they've seen Jesus at work from the time they parked their cars until this point. People have actually been happy to see them – CHURCH PEOPLE!!!! "It's as if they REALLY are glad we're here!" would be the prevailing thought. These people have gone out of their way to make them feel at home, they show them where to go, even help them find a seat.
They don't feel judged, they don't feel out of place. Something feels right about this place.
They are experiencing the evidence of the power of prayer. People getting to a movie theater at 7am and PRAYERFULLY re-building what will soon become Vertical Church. It's people PRAYERFULLY putting up pipe and drape curtains and signage that transform the theater into Vertical. It's children's workers PRAYERFULLY putting together gates for children, preparing lessons that help children fall in love with Jesus. It's the road crew PRAYERFULLY creating the worship environment, lighting, instrumentation and video. It's even people PRAYERFULLY making coffee, lemonade and making the lobby appear welcoming.
It's people praying over areas, praying towards those who will come, praying for people whose faces they've yet to see that makes the difference. It's the Holy Spirit inhabiting people, and those people PRAYERFULLY allowing Him to work through them. You can't fake this until you make it – You can't fake caring about people, reaching out to people or loving people far from God. Faking this, regardless of intentions, always shows itself as the hypocrisy that it is. Only God can give you the love people deserve.
On the surface the music, lights, dress and style might be mistaken as being "Vertical" but that's not what makes us who we are. All those people who spend themselves weekly for the Glory of God, that's what makes Vertical, "Vertical". I thank God for all of you!!! Your love is making a difference.