"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

10 March 2015

Testimonial Tuesdays #4....CHURCH MOVE!

It's Tuesday which means Testimony day!

This is a writing exercise where we share answers to prayer....sometimes our answers are Yes, No, or Wait.  But He always answers! I'm linking up with Jerralea.....won't you join in and tell us an answer to one of your prayers?

image courtesy of the church website
It started out as a feeling in my stomach.

I'd sit in church, in the inner city of Troy, NY, a city I didn't really like, and my mind would be so distracted.  Distracted by the many children being allowed to run around the aisles.  Distracted by the noise in the back, the whispering, the crunching of potato chip bags.  The sadness that would overwhelm me that I was not "home". That I was no longer in a church that felt "right".  5 of my very good friends had already left.....my good friends, Mindy, Cheryl, Mary, Erin.  I felt like I didn't belong there........I had always felt a bit "different" anyways as for the longest time I was one of just a small handful of women who worked outside the home and didn't homeschool or have more than 1 child.  By the time I had 2 daughters, I felt so alone in the crowd so much of the time.  And the "crowd" was only about 100 people.

It was 2004 and I was really starting to panic.  I kept thinking we, as a family, were supposed to leave this church, yet my husband didn't feel it was time.  I had been feeling this way since about 2002.  He just didn't know if we should move to a different church.  But I did. I kept sensing that God wanted us to change churches. I felt like He wanted us in our own community.  My flesh wanted to go where a couple of my friends were going.  But that isn't what my spirit was sensing.  So I kept asking Dave about visiting other churches. He gave me the go ahead to visit other churches on our side of the Hudson River...the side where our home is and where there are many suburban churches.  I started visiting churches about once a month. I only chose Evangelical or Bible-based churches. Two of them I visited twice, praying each time for the Lord to show me just where we were supposed to be.  I started in September 2004 and by March of 2005 we were visiting the above site.  

As soon as we all walked into those main doors you see pictured above, we just knew this was where God wanted us.  It is so hard to explain in words.  From the greeters who held open the doors, to the ushers handing out bulletins, to the youth group pastor who welcomed our 12 year old, to the Kids Celebration workers who said hello to our 5 year old, we were hooked.

And the worship team!! Oh my.  And the sanctuary of respectful people all praising and worshiping God and no children running up and down the aisles.  And the pastor!  Oh the preaching of the Word of God with a vibrancy and power and the knowledge of Biblical Truth like we had never heard it before.

We started praying.  And God showed my husband that yes, it was time to move to this church.  We made the move the last Sunday of June 2005 when our youngest was done with Kindergarten and our oldest had just graduated from elementary school.  We immediately got her plugged in to the weekly Youth Group and our little one joined Awana, Kids Celebration (Sunday School) and summer VBS where she accepted Christ!! 

 Little did Dave know that I had been praying about Grace Fellowship ever since we first visited  that March.  We introduced ourselves to the pastor and his wife (and their daughter was in the same school as our oldest!) and the pastor told us this was a time for us to just rest. No ministry, no small group leading....just, rest.  That didn't last long though.  By the beginning of 2006 we were both serving in various ministries and taking the classes to become covenant members.  We saw the church over the last 10 years add 3 other campuses.  We have sites in Saratoga, Halfmoon, (both to the north of us) and East Greenbush( to the east of us).  We have stayed in our same town site...the main campus in Latham.  It is only a 7 minute drive from our house.  Our oldest is now in college and our youngest is now a 10th grader and student leader in her youth group.  We just love it and we have learned something new from Pastor Rex every.single.week. that he preaches. 
We are blessed and we thank God all the time for the answer to our prayer of making a move.  Although it wasn't in the time frame I was desiring, I am so glad we listened to that still, small Voice. We have never regretted it and we just wish we had done it sooner....but God's ways are best. Sometimes He says "Yes but  Wait."

Has there ever been a time when you just knew something needed to change but you had to wait on God for the right time??


Jerralea said...

Thanks for sharing your testimony, Faith. I know God has a church home for every believer. Sometimes you know right away, and sometimes it takes awhile. I truly believe God orders our steps, so when the time is right, He will open doors. We have to do our part which is praying and then actually visiting churches. Some say they haven't found their church home, but they really haven't been looking!

Susanne said...

Changing churches is Hard! And "shopping" for a church is hard too! But boy, when you walk into the one that feels like home, it is the best feeling! So glad you and your family have found that in Grace Fellowship!