Christ South/Old Dairy Farm Land Update
Pastor Matt Simpkins - September 21, 2020
Boldness is not an easy thing. It just isn’t. It’s riddled with pitfalls of jumping onto easier already-trodden paths. It’s something that is much easier to just not do at all. It’s not super fun, and it typically leaves you drained, but WOW is it EXHILARATING. And yet, it’s what God has been up to with God’s people for generations. It’s what God is constantly calling us all to be. BOLD.
Joshua, as he was installed as leader was given a command to boldness, but yet also, listen to what God says right at the end:
Joshua 1: 7-9: 7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.
Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
What incredible news that is for us all! God commands us to be bold, not by our own trust in self or work ethic, but rather because the Lord of all creation is WITH US. Through whatever bold calling we take on in life!
4 and a half years ago we had crazy bold calling to develop church in a new paradigm. It’s a concept that we have been talking about it a lot. So maybe, if you are tired of hearing about it, skip on to #4 below. However, I bet a little refresher wouldn’t hurt.
Pastor Scott reminds us all the tie, “you eat sleep and breathe this stuff, other folks need more time and information, and you’ll want to share it widely and repeatedly!” What wise words for us in this crazy time, especially!
So here are a couple questions you might be asking, and some brief answers:
1. What is the Old Dairy Farm and why aren’t you just saying Christ South?
The Old Dairy Farm is an entity CLC created to provide a healthy, intentional buffer for the church to try out the entrepreneur church model. We’ll be creating and cultivating partnerships with local area community and mission minded groups/organizations to have lots of portals of entry for people to use the land and engage with us. This will give us the opportunity to meet people that wouldn’t ever darken the door of our church campuses. Additionally, it will give the ODF access to funding sources that we couldn’t normally get as a church.
However, Christ South is still the name of our church campus gathering that will (hopefully not too far into the future) be meeting on the land! We’re still very much a church campus and part of Christ Lutheran.
2. What is Entrepreneur Church?
This is an exciting new concept where we will partner with ministry and community organizations that will use the land, creating sustainable, regular community on the land and additionally will help offset the costs of running Christ South and other ministries. It will be set up to encourage them to grow, which in turn helps our ministries grow together.
3. What will it look like, really?
One model to share this concept is one we’re currently workshopping with a fitness company. They would lead workout classes as part of the ministry on the land each week - for a reduced cost - with a spiritual aspect. Seeking to deepen relationships with the community, this would be what we term a “portal of entry” for the community to come into relationship with the overall ministry. These would likely be many who wouldn’t normally, or ever, come to a worship service. It’s just one small way that we can regularly meet people with spiritual depth that’d we’d never meet. The fitness company would give a gift to the Old Dairy Farm as part of that relationship which would ultimately go to offset costs associated with the ministry (very similar to how the relationship with the Children’s Center is set up).
4. What will happen in Phase 1?
Phase 1 will be both necessary and INCREDIBLE! To do this concept, we can’t simply put up a church building and hope entrepreneur church will just happen. This concept is designed specifically to reach those who won’t come to church. The church has an opportunity to diversify the mission field and this is how we can do it.
Phase 1 lists the following:
The Little Barn (a place of worship, a hub of operations, gathering space)
Gravel loop drive around the property
The Hospitality Barn (much like a coffee shop/hospitality/meeting space)
Outdoor worship/wedding area in the woods (Hey, Eagle Scouts! We need you!)
Fountain and Rock Creek Bed (to control water in the low area of the lawn)
Water/Sanitary/Erosion Control/Retention Pond (necessary infrastructure)
5. What steps are happening right now?
Phase 1 has been endorsed by the ODF Board and now goes to council. Then, it will be presented to the Town of Weddington (Oct). After that, we’ll have a chance as a congregation to talk about it in great depth before any shovels hit dirt.
YES. You’re right. It’s a BOLD vision. But Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with [us] wherever [we] go! That is WHO God is and HOW Go works.
If you have additional questions, we’re so happy to share and, clearly, we LOVE talking about it! Reach out to me directly at email@example.com or shoot me a call via cell. If you’d rather come to the land and walk around with us, we’d be happy to set that up.
Lord God, thank you for calling us to bold visions. As we begin to walk down the path, call us to your providence and peace, guide us in your wisdom and truth. And Lord, when the path feels daunting, remind us of your presence. In Jesus name we pray… AMEN!