On Wednesday evening I went across to Watford to take part in a prayer meeting which was being held by a church called X1. Simon Leigh-Jones, one of their leaders, had invited me to join them so that they could pray for me and for what God has called us to here in Slough.
Church planting is the hardest thing I have ever been involved in. Only those who themselves have church planted (I have found) really appreciate and understand the challenges that it brings. Church planting is lonely, and as Brian Houston has put it, “many a church planter has perished through isolation.”
So when Simon invited me to join X1 for an evening, I jumped at the opportunity!
What a privilege to be with them as a church. Here are just 3 things that I really appreciated from my time with them:
- The warmth of their welcome. Nothing stuffy, formal or done out of sense of duty here. People came to talk to us (I had taken a friend) and they were all so encouraging. A church where it really felt like people could come as they are and find acceptance and love.
- The level of faith in the room. This was palpable. I came away provoked, challenged and inspired. A church with a growing passion for Jesus and a desire to see the kingdom of God advance.
- Lots of manly men going for it in worship and prayer. Not only that, but when they prayed for us, it felt like they would end up tripping over each other to do so. A church which leaves everything on the field. Wonderful!
At one point Simon asked me about where we as a church plant would love to be in 5 years time. I so hope that in 5 years time we are modelling to others what on Wednesday evening I caught a glimpse of X1 modelling for us.