Every good story has an introduction. Every adventure has a beginning. I mean, what good is an epic journey without a first step?
Over the last 6 - 8 months I think I (we) have perfected telling our story to other people who believe what we believe. Essentially, it is easy to tell someone who believes in Jesus that He has called you to pioneer a church overseas. They don't just comprehend that, they're invigorated by that.
But we are not here to talk primarily to people like that. We are here to meet people who are un-churched, people who have not heard the good news of Jesus, people who are lost, angry, depressed, hopeless, cruising, searching or stuck.
We are here to make a difference.
That is why the introduction is so crucial. You see, it’s the accent that gets them asking questions: “Where are you from?” “Why are you here?” These are the standard conversations starters. Then, it’s our turn. An easy out would be to say: “Oh, yeah, just moved here with my family for work…” but the more appropriate answer would be to say the truth.
This is easier said than done.
“Uh, we are church pastors of a contemporary pentecostal church”
“Oh...where do you meet?”
“Oh, uh, we are a church plant.”
“Well, it never had leaves, so I suppose so. I mean, we are pioneering a church for lost people”
And before you know it, the conversation is over.
Then I sat & watched Nadia talk to a restaurant owner in the city the other day. She was natural, brilliant & she nailed it. But, who’s surprised by that, she’s a remarkable human. The conversation went like this:
“Hey! You guys from out of town?”
“Yeah, we are from New Zealand, we are here starting a church. Don’t worry though, we are normal.”
By the time we left the restaurant that day, the owner came over a number of times to chat & Nadia had the 'follow' on social media. There was connection & the invitation for relationship.
So here we are!
Canada is amazing.
Ottawa is better than we hoped.
It's a city that's about to explode with culture, vibe, and good coffee. You can feel it.
Settled in with the necessary formalities (Social Insurance Numbers, bank accounts, vehicles etc)
Established HQ (our home)
Met heaps of new & amazing people
Started Dinner Parties & informal Sunday Gatherings
We are loving the people we have met.
It is a common phrase for us to hear people say: “We’ve been waiting for the right community to link up with”
Before we left Wellington, in a staff meeting, Gillian prophesied and said that there were “A people waiting” in Canada. A people who were looking for family, and leadership. So far, this has absolutely been our experience.
There are people here who want to do something great for God.
There are people here who want to build and connect with like minded & like spirited people.
We are meeting these kinds of people every single day, and it is invigorating.
Our team has begun to arrive from New Zealand and Australia. Sam, Jess & Andy arrived from NZ, followed by Chelsea (NZ) & then Nathan (our honourary Australian). So far, the spring has highs of 28 degrees & Nathan is the only one who has called the weather cold. Sam & Anna (NZ) arrive tomorrow, then the rest of the team enter the country over the next few weeks & months.
Exciting times ahead.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers.
Levi & Nadia