Sermons and the power of next steps- Brii's story
The first time my husband Seth and I attended Exponential Church we weren't really looking for a church. We were just visiting, but God has a way of putting you in the right place at the right time. The message we heard that day was so compelling, we talked about it the whole ride home and most of the day, which honestly was something we'd never done before as a couple. So we decided we would continue with the series and attend just until it was over, but then the next series sounded like it would be good so we stayed for that one, and the next one, and the next one... Do you see where I'm going with this? We have happily called Exponential Church our home every since!
As I'm writing this I'm reminded of the Bible verse John 14:3, "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am." I know God put me and my husband in that church at that precise moment to prepare us for our future. I cannot speak for my husband but due to family events and personal reasons, 2014 proved to be the hardest year of my life. I am convinced that without this church and the growth I've experienced here by the grace of God, and through Gilbert's teachings I would have completely fallen apart. The person who walked in those doors a few years back was not prepared for what was coming, but God knew that and every Sunday He spoke directly into my life.
One of Exponential's core values is that everyone has a next step to take. It's this subtle reminder to never let yourself become stagnant in your relationship with God, but instead keep that hunger and desire for growth in your personal Christ-like journey. It's funny that something so simple as a written reminder in your weekly program can be so life changing. Once a week I'm asked to take this private, honest moment with God and decide where I need to grow in my spiritual journey and if I want, I can write it down and share it with Gilbert so he can support me in prayer. It's that simple. Sometimes a light bulb goes off and the growth happens over night, and sometimes it's something I really have to work at, but it all adds up to the point where I'm growing...exponentially! I've attended quite a few churches in my life and surprisingly I've never been asked to do this before.
I could write all day about the things that have changed in me, and in my husband, and the positive outcome its had on our marriage over the last few years because of this small but essential process, but I'll sum it up to this... God put us here, at Exponential Church, to grow. So that not just in the good times, but in those troubled times when we feel like our world is falling apart, our faith can not be shaken. On our worst days we can still praise God, because we know it's an opportunity to learn, grow and draw closer to Him. We thank God for this church and it's people, and we look forward to a future filled with continuing spiritual growth.