Making a home everywhere we go
Bert Miner pointed out something to me that I had missed. We had been looking for places where we might gather for worship around Port Orchard, and I had naively valued location, price and ease as the top of needs for a temporary location. Bert, however, having worshipped with us with his wife, Cathy, since we moved into 703 Kitsap Street, saw something that I had lost in the course of changing addresses: we are shaped by where we worship. And what we’ve learned and who we’ve grown with has made the next place we’ll be all the more beautiful a gift.
Keep reading for the reveal of where we will be beginning February 13!
Friends, we have had the opportunity to worship God in so many places in Port Orchard! And we have been shaped by each one. Let us count the many ways that God has provided: downtown Port Orchard, South Kitsap High School, YouTube, backyards, Clayton Park, First Christian Church, Family Worship Center, 703 Kitsap Street, and Coffee Oasis.
The house at 703 Kitsap Street has particularly shaped us in ways of God’s heart:
- We are in a home, a place of belonging.
- We can just as easily sit at a table and share a meal as sit comfortably for conversation.
- The one unfamiliar with the steeple-like church buildings can find comfort in opening a familiar front door.
- We are in a place filled with natural light and the beauty of this unique place God has created.
Perhaps we have stumbled upon core ways that we will share God with our neighbors.
Incarnation – God meets us in the unique space and among the unique people with whom we live, work, play and learn. Where can we meet that speaks the language and carries the uniqueness of the place and people we are with now?
Hospitality – We see the image of God in every person we meet. Where can we offer dignity and love to our neighbors in such a way that strangers might become family?
Imagination – We seek to partner with how God is building his kingdom here and now, anticipating the day of Jesus’ return when God creates a new heaven and a new earth here. Where can we set our gaze on who God is so that our imagination might grow for what he is doing here and now to build his kingdom?
In this spirit of gratitude and these hopes for how a place might shape us in the months to come, we are so delighted to announce that we will be able to worship for at the Port Orchard Yacht Club!
It is incarnational, downtown and on the water. It is hospitable, anyone can walk in (even those of us without boats, ha!). It sparks our imagination. While we stood there, a simple wondering from Bert made it the place I fervently prayed to be able to be for a season. As we looked out on the water and the veiled mountains out of the windows of the Yacht Club Bert said, “I can imagine hearing the Scripture read here and looking out on that. Wouldn’t that be a way to hear from God?”
From that point on, I knew that while where we worship isn’t everything (certainly! The Church is a people, not a place!), where we meet does shape us. And we are so grateful for a season, from February 13 until Easter, to be able to worship in this place where we can incarnate the Gospel, extend hospitality, and spur imagination for God’s Kingdom.
God is solidifying a lot of who he has shaped us to be as a community in the last couple of years. Coming soon is a new name and, God willing, a new, longer-term location. Lest you feel in the changes twinges of change weariness, let me offer an alternative perspective:
We are being filled as we go. We are richer than three years ago. Richer for the perspectives, friendships, connections, joys, dreams, and hurdles overcome. More stable for the ideas shaken and what has remained. Stronger for the faith muscles exercised in the regular provisioning of God. More prepared with the “comfort certificates” God has provided in the midst of struggle (2 Corinthians 1:3-7).
I invite you:
- come meet God with us;
- come be curious with us what he is doing and what his provision is leading to;
- come grow with us;
- come bring neighbors and friends to hear from God together;
- come shape who we will become.
We have one more week down at the Coffee Oasis, our ministry partner on Bay St. Then we’ll move down the road to the Port Orchard Yacht Club on February 13th. How exciting!
2 Corinthians 1:7 Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort.