God at Work

My mother-in-law said after church one Sunday, “There’s no schedule for church is there?” This came after waiting thirty-five minutes on a key to arrive to open the doors for our monthly celebration Sunday. I replied, “Well, we always set a time and hope to start within an hour or so.” To this she responded, “Even without a schedule everyone was very relational and enjoyed one another.” My mother-in-law’s experience of a new culture and a new church structure left quite an impression on her.  
These comments from my mother-in-law are a great description of the atmosphere that has been intentionally created over the past 6 years. House churches provide an intimate environment for sharing the joys and sorrows of life as well as the opportunity for a relational worship experience. Each Sunday sharing breakfast together and chatting about life always reminds me of my need for this—we need our brothers and sisters in Christ. The connection and communication is food for our souls. Combine that with a relational worship experience and we leave our family wanting more of God in our lives. The results are simple yet profound. One minister says it this way, “The growth of the kingdom of God is not measured in miles or feet but in inches.” And every week my church family looks more and more like the bride of Christ. 
As our transition here to help with the work of evangelism and discipleship begins to take root, I am continually impressed with the foundation that has been laid. God is at work in Arequipa. This is a phrase that I not only believe but continually repeat to acknowledge His sovereignty in this work. As new teammates arrive and the veterans prepare to leave I wonder what is next for our community of believers. What part of the city is a strategic location to start a new house church? Is there an opportunity to start a college ministry? Will the parents of the students in the library program be open to exploring faith in the future? These questions and a hundred more have surfaced as of late. But my prayer through the transitions and questions is that God brings us all in line with his will as we plant seeds of the gospel and share our community of faith with our Peruvian neighbors. God is at work! He is working on our hearts and preparing the hearts of seekers who are ready to join a community of Christ. May God be glorified!