Monthly Archives: April 2009

Someday we will look back on the next two years at North Creek and be able to grasp what happened. I have a feeling that it will be important in our history. More than important…divine. God is beginning to stir in my heart and my husband’s heart for the next season of our church. I wrote on a scratch sheet of paper “Sept. 24, 2009 – 300.” It was a thought that I had in the midst of listening to a session at conference, so I jotted it down. Three hundred people by our 3 year anniversary. Poetic, isn’t it? But later that night a missionary friend came up to me and said, “I want you to know that I’ve been praying for your church lately. I’ve been believing that God would grow you to 500 people by the end of the year.”

That hit me like a ton of bricks. First of all, I’ve never had anybody tell me that they have been praying for our church with such a goal oriented request in mind. People should really tell you before they start to pray these things. Prayer works, you know. You’ve got to be careful throwing around words to our really powerful God…

So, five hundred. That’s not just a number. Those are people. Faces. Hurts, hopes, fears, problems, solutions, gifts, dreams, work…each lovingly entrusted into the care of North Creek by the very hand of God. I don’t take that lightly. I celebrate the numbers that we have, but I never forget that each number represents responsibility. It is our responsibility to love, pray for, reach out to, disciple, and plug in each person. And by “our responsibility”, I don’t mean Mark and me. I mean the church as a whole.

And what is that going to take? What do we have to do to take care of 500? We need to give more of ourselves. We need to grow ourselves. We need to dream bigger. We need to pray…we need to believe. We need to love people like God loves us…we need to walk in obedience. We need to shed off sin and stupidity. We need to look outward a lot more than we look inward. And what scares me more than absolutely anything is this…

The people of North Creek will do it.

Last night a fellow church planter, Mark Batterson from Washington, D.C., spoke. First of all, it was nice to hear a church planter start with 25 people and grow to thousands upon thousands…

Secondly, his spirit is one of boldness, adventure, and yet a deep and profound love for tradition and values. He spoke on the mission of God and really changing the WORLD. We are so good at focusing on our daily to-do list and often times forget that there is a greater purpose for our lives. That clearly sums up how I have felt being lead pastors with Mark at a church plant. It has forced us to dream…constantly. There is never a break and that discipline to keep reaching, keep pushing, keep stepping out in faith is one that I will cherish for the rest of my life.

Faith is something that I think people think they have, but they don’t know because they never do anything outside of their own ability to succeed. For instance, try giving God a faith promise to give more money than you could ever possibly give to His body…and then start writing the check every month. In your spirit, you say, “I can’t do that, I don’t have the money!” But that’s not FAITH. Faith is doing something that you can’t SEE and believing that God will meet you where you fall short. Scary, huh? And so exciting! Every time that North Creek steps out in faith, I think for a moment, “Boy, if this doesn’t work, Mark and I are sure gonna look like idiots!” And what happens? God blesses us so abundantly that we are immediately forced to begin thinking about the next idiotic idea. What a life we get to live! It is so fun and so rewarding. And so worth the cost!

Mark and I are at our Network conference this week in Pasco, Washington. It’s nice to get away and allow ourselves to refocus and dream for our lives and ministry. I continue to be excited and proud of our church! Our leadership, volunteers, and congregation are truly amazing. We find ourselves bragging on North Creek to the point of ridiculousness! We are just blessed pastors and are so thankful for the people that call the Coffee Church their home. We are also enjoying a great season of growth in right now that has been a lot of fun!

Last Sunday we had our third Sunday with two services and it went VERY smoothly. We had our highest attendance (again) and the services were evenly divided which gave a great feel in both environments. As God begins to stir our hearts for the next few months of ministry, I sense that we will see God pour out His blessings in both numbers, growth in individual lives, and an abundance of finances to accomplish all that God is beginning to tell Mark and I in our hearts. North Creek is full of generous people!

Let’s go change the world!

You are probably waiting with great impatience to know how the youth ministry launch went last night…

IT WAS INCREDIBLE!!! They ended up with 58 people (teens and leaders) as well as another 15 in the babysitting room. There were teens crawling all over the place…and I didn’t know MOST of them! It was truly a surreal experience to watch everyone hanging out, hearing a message, and worshipping. Mark talked to one young man who had never been in a church before. I am quite positive that his first experience with Jesus was a great one. I think he felt welcome, excited, and comfortable. That’s a great start to what could be a long and profound relationship with Jesus. Either way, those youth kids made our God look really good last night!

We have an amazing team at North Creek. From the littlest kids to our teens to our main services, we have truly exceptional leaders. I am really excited to watch God use each one of them in surprising ways!

Congrats to Kris, Jeff and Angela who got to experience something that has been being molded for 2 1/2 years! You have all had a hand in God’s awesome work and we are proud of you!

This journey is definitely one of watching God bless our steps of faith. I continue to be amazed that everytime we decide to do something outrageous, God seems to bless it. We stepped out in faith on Sunday and did 2 services – 9:00 am and 10:30 am. And surprise, surprise…we had 25 more people on Sunday morning than normal. Why? I have no idea.

Our first service was not very full, but the irony is that if you had taken the people from the first service and dropped them into the second, we wouldn’t fit. And we had several of our regular families out of town that morning. We are busting at the seams overall.

My husband sent an email to our church this morning. Here’s a copy:

North Creek –

Our first try at mulitple services proved successful in the fact that we had our highest attendance ever on a normal Sunday morning! At 143, without double counting those who attended both services, we were very pleased with our overall picture this weekend. It seems as though that every time we step out in faith, God pours out His blessing with more people!

For those of you who attended the 9:00 am service – thank you! We quite literally could not have fit you in the second service. That being said, I am asking for 30 more people to switch from the 10:30 am service to the 9:00 am service. We want both of our services balanced and for the 10:30 am service to have room for new guests who come in.

It may be a sacrifice for your family, but it will allow for us to grow and change more lives in our community! Please let me know if you are willing to move to the earlier service for the next season of ministry at North Creek at

Thank you for going on this incredible journey with us!

Pastor Mark

So, jump into our 9:00 am service. The coffee is fresher and then you can go out with your family for a nice big brunch! Looking forward to seeing you there!