Next Step

The Next Step Update: Denver

Each month, we want to update everyone on The Next Step, our initiative to make internal and external investments in God's Kingdom. Read more about The Next Step

Corbin and Allie Hobbs

Corbin and Allie Hobbs

From Corbin Hobbs of The Heights Community Church:

Greetings Hulen Street Family!

I am writing to you from Denver, where I can say that Jesus is at work and building his church! I cannot express how thankful I am for you all and your partnership in planting a new church here in the city.

As I write to you, I am thinking about how church planting is a declaration of war. By starting a new church in a highly secular city like Denver, we have declared war on Satan, sin, death, and hell. But as we work to plant The Heights Church, we are clinging to what God says in 2 Chronicles 20:17.

“You will not need to fight in this battle. Stand firm, hold your position, and see the salvation of the LORD on your behalf, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed. Tomorrow go out against them, and the LORD will be with you.”

I’m deeply encouraged by this and you should be also!

To give you an update, I want to tell you about what's happening in the life of our new church, where we are going, and let you know what to pray for in the coming months.

CELEBRATING GOD'S WORK

God has done a significant amount of work over the last few months. I want to narrow it down to just three things that we can celebrate together.

The growing church planting team of The Heights Community Church

The growing church planting team of The Heights Community Church

First, our team is growing. We have gone from a team of about six people to a team of about twenty-five over the last few months. We are really excited about the growth that God is bringing to us. This summer we will have six new people move to the city from all over the country to get jobs and start making disciples. These people are incredible and such an answer to prayer.

Second, we are excited to welcome a few mission teams to the city, one of those being you guys! We are so excited for partners like Hulen Street who send teams that can meet many of the tangible needs of The Heights Church. In July, you all will send a team who will be responsible for helping us throw our first public event for the community! We will put on a movie night where people can bring their families, meet their neighbors, and watch the movie Inside Out.

Third, I want to share the story of a couple of people named Ryan and Austin. They are two of our new friends who do not know Jesus. Slowly but surely, they have become regulars at our Wednesday night gatherings. We are so excited to see God working in their lives, drawing them closer to Himself. Ryan and Austin are the reason we are in the city, and the reason that you all are partnering with us to start a new church in this city. Our hope is to see many stories like Ryan and Austin’s as Jesus builds his church in the city!

WHERE IS GOD TAKING US?

In August we will begin meeting as a church on Sunday nights. We are in the process of securing a coffee shop called The Copper Door that we will begin meeting in. Throughout the Fall we are going to walk through the book of Nehemiah, and discuss what it means to belong to Jesus’ church and how we can all contribute in the growth of the church. Along with gathering on Sunday nights, we will host many community events in the park. Pray that God will give us favor with our neighbors as we throw these parties for our community!

The Heights Community Church serving the city of Denver

The Heights Community Church serving the city of Denver

We will meet on Sunday nights until February 12, 2017 when we will launch Sunday morning worship services. Our hope is to grow from a community of 25 people to a community of 50 throughout the Fall as we move toward our public launch. Will you pray that God would begin to do a great work in adding to our church family over the next several months?

HOW CAN YOU PRAY?

As we have been here in Denver, we have learned to lean into prayer more than ever. We recognize that there are things that will not happen until we boldly ask God for them. There are three things that I want to invite you to pray for over the next few months.

  1. Meeting Space. We have had a couple of leads on meeting spaces for our church that have fallen through. Our hope is that God will provide a space in our target area where at least 200 people can gather. Would you come alongside of us in begging God to provide us a space in the next few weeks?
  2. Laborers for the Harvest. Being in a city of over 3 million people, we constantly feel overwhelmed by the gospel need here. In Matthew 9:38 Jesus says, "Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest." We realize that we do not have a harvest problem, but a laborer problem. Would you join us in asking God to send people who are passionate about making disciples to join our team?
  3. Salvation. Our mission is to reach, build, and release joyful followers of Jesus. Right now we are laser-focused on reaching people with the good news of Jesus. Would you pray that as we share the gospel the Holy Spirit would move in power and begin to change people's hearts? Pray that God would give us favor with our friends, co-workers, and neighbors who are far from him.

The Next Step Update: Atlanta

Each month, we want to update everyone on The Next Step, our initiative to make internal and external investments in God's Kingdom. Read more about The Next Step

Dustin and Sheri Crawford of True North Community Church in Atlanta

From Dustin Crawford of True North Community Church in Atlanta:

Greetings Hulen Street family!

Over the past several months, we at True North Church have experienced and celebrated several evidences of God’s grace working in and through our church family. I wanted to write to you to share them with you and so you could celebrate and praise God with us for all he is doing!

Worship services with Dustin Crawford, Lead Pastor of True North Community Church in Atlanta.

WHAT GOD IS DOING

First, in order to gather on Sunday we needed a space to meet in. The Lord answered our prayers beyond our wildest dreams by providing The Perkerson Park Recreation Center, which just happens to be in our dream location in the heart of our neighborhood! The Lord provided us with this space just weeks before we had planned to have our first service! Even though the average facility rent in our neighborhood was $5,000 per month, God gave us this place for $700 per month! They even provide us with chairs, tables, and allow us to store all our things there, which makes set up and tear down a breeze.

True North Community Church in Atlanta, GA, meets in the Perkerson Park Recreation Center in their neighborhood.

Second, we gathered together as a church family for the first time to worship King Jesus! On Sunday, April 17th - just 10 months after moving to Atlanta - we had 30 people worshipping the King in the heart of our neighborhoods!

As a result of having services and continuing to be present in our neighborhoods, the Lord has given us incredible favor. We are widely known and widely loved.

KARA'S STORY

Five months ago, I met Kara (“Coach K”). She lives in our neighborhood with her two boys Kalveion and Caleb, and she runs the Perkerson Park Recreation Center, where we hold services. Over this time she has loved on our church, gone out of her way to help us, and shared her story with me. Kara said that has lived in Atlanta for over 20 years and has never been to church.

Two weeks ago, our church had the opportunity to love on her and her family, not just with our words, but with our actions. She is trying to raise money for her oldest son Kalveion to be able to study abroad for the summer. Our church wanted to show her how much we love her by supporting them, and we raised almost the entire amount in a few days. We took it to her and she absolutely lost it. Here are a few things she posted on Facebook:

  • God places you in the right place at the right time! I want to thank Pastor Crawford and his church! I’m in tears right now... man I keep telling y'all FAVOR AIN’T FAIR! Man God is good! I can’t even type anymore... Thank you Lord!!!

  • Sometimes people whom you just met have better intentions for you than people you’ve known a lifetime! It’s so much bigger... this act of kindness that I just received has left me speechless! Genuine love man...

Coach K and her sons are now a part of our church family and last Sunday Coach K got for the first time understood the love Jesus has for her. This is what she said after church service.

  • I got it now! You see I’ve always prayed for my children... I’ve asked that they be covered in your blood! And believe me they are blessed beyond measure…but today you told me I was beautiful... and well I want to live as such... you know Be Beautiful! Unbeknownst to me you were covering me too! I want peace and NO ONE or THING can give me that but you! I’m EXCITED! #word #truenorth

Praise God! She is now plugged in and telling everyone about Jesus and about True North Church. This is just one of several stories I could share. Be encouraged that God is answering your prayers and multiplying your giving to bring about the spread of his transforming grace in the inner city of Southwest Atlanta!

HOW YOU CAN BE PRAYING

1. Salvations: Pray God would bring many people into his family through our church family.

2. Favor: Pray that God would continue to give us favor with our neighbors. Pray for new relationships as well as for deepening relationships.

Some people from True North Community Church gathering in a home

3. Workers: We are praying as a church family for workers for the harvest, that is, for people to join our family to transform our neighborhoods with the gospel. Pray that God would raise up indigenous leaders from our neighborhoods!

One specific need we have is for a Pastor of Worship Arts. Join us in aksing God to provide us with the right person to fill this need for our church and for our neighborhood!

4. Provision: Continue to pray that God would continue to provide us with financial partners! On top of our monthly need, we are still in need of several one time purchases, such as, kids ministry supplies and a sound system.

One specific need we have is to raise money to bring on another full-time Pastor. We have the right guy for this spot, but need the funds to make it happen!

5. Our Church Family: Continue to pray for endurance, joy, and protection for our church family. Pray for God to provide houses in our neighborhood, to protect our marriages, to comfort those of us who are suffering, to provide us with jobs, to knit our hearts to Him and one another, for unity in our church, and that He would give us the affections and courage needed to share the gospel and our lives with others.

WHAT'S COMING AND OUR NEEDS

True North Community Church in Atlanta, GA, serving food to the surrounding community outdoors in a park.

  • We are super excited to have some of our Hulen Street family coming to visit with us July 23-August 1st. Our church family can’t stop talking about it!
  • August 7th we are having a our first big event. We are going to be having "Church in the Park" followed by a massive block party. This is going to be the event we are hoping that will kick off our church being fully birthed. August 14th we are hoping to have everything in place, thus having our true public launch of True North!
  • As I said, we are still in the process of giving full birth to our church. We are gathering on Sundays now, but we don't have a kids ministry. Our goal is to have a full-blown kids ministry by August 14th, the first Sunday after our "Church in the Park" event.
  • We are excited also to announce we are multiplying into two Community Groups at the end of May. And we are hoping to have a third group by the end of the summer! We will now have groups in 3 of our 5 target neighborhoods!

On behalf of True North Church we want to say thank you for being present with us in prayer, finances, and soon in person! We praise God for you and for Christ in you. Looking forward to seeing you face to face again soon.

Grace and Peace.

The Next Step Update: New Spaces

Each month, we want to update everyone on The Next Step, our initiative to make internal and external investments in God's Kingdom. Read more about The Next Step

Panoramic view of the Worship Center at Hulen Street Church in Fort Worth, TX
Solid wood doors make up the front of the new vestibule which leads into the Worship Center | Hulen Street Church in Fort Worth, TX

With Easter behind us we finally have the chance to catch our breath and celebrate the completion of our remodeled worship entrance and vestibule project! The new entrance dramatically improves the first impression of our Worship Center and significantly increases our seating capacity. This will allow us to continue to grow without taking on the financial commitment of having to add square footage to accommodate the people you have been inviting to experience Hulen Street Church. 

The refinished women's bathroom near the new vestibule | Hulen Street Church

The refinished women's bathroom near the new vestibule | Hulen Street Church

This project, along with the remodel of the restrooms that serve the Worship Center, was made possible through your sacrificial generosity to The Next Step campaign. With the remodel of the entrance and bathrooms completed, we may be tempted to think we have reached the goals of The Next Step, but we need to remember that even though we have completed this part of our plan, your contributions will continue to go toward supporting our new church partners, True North Community Church in Atlanta and The Heights Community Church in Denver.

The Next Step Campaign webpage | Hulen Street Church

The Next Step Campaign webpage | Hulen Street Church

In the coming months we will be sending out news and updates from both of our church partners to keep you informed of the difference your generosity is making in those two communities. If you aren't familiar with their vision or how we have connected with them, you can find videos on our Next Step Campaign page.

Thank you for your continued support of The Next Step!