This past Sunday Church of the Suncoast turned 5. It seems like my wife Cheryl and I have been doing this church planting thing forever, but in other ways our time is a blip on the map. Here are some of the highlights:
We started a new series called "DNA" that will take us up to Easter and it is all about the vision of the Suncoast. Normally, when a vision series and our birthday line up I get up and talk about the past and how we started with no building, no people, and no money because you can't know where you are going unless you know where you have been. But, instead of that we shot a documentary on the handful of people who got this thing off the ground and let them tell the story in their own words. You can watch it here:
It is about 10 minutes too long but we really wanted to show the amazing stories, in fact there was so much to share that about 2 hours worth of film is sitting on the cutting room floor. Thanks to my parents, the Drescher's, Wilson's, McCauley's and my wife for sharing and being willing to have their faces plastered all over a 20 ft screen!
We also had the scrap books my mom has made for about the first 3 years out for people to look through. As I flipped through them I was struck by how young I looked... only 27 when we started AND I was struck by the excitement on every one's faces as they set up or did some task to transform the location.
The band did a song by "The Afters" called "We Won't Give Up" and we are going to use that as our rallying cry for the rest of the series. Great job guys! It really set the mood.
We also took up a special offering for a couple Japanese churches that were wiped out last month. We will be sending just over $3,000 to help them continue to do ministry and rebuild. Way to go Suncoast! Stay tuned for updates.
Then we wrapped the service up with baptism and child dedication (congratulations guys) and CAKE! Each year Publix makes us a cool cake to celebrate our birthday and this years was awesome. We went through it in less than 10 minutes.
Then we packed the trailer up and put another service in the can. BUT, what a birthday. I am thankful God has allowed me to go along for this ride. He has done an amazing work in my life through this and I know He has changed many of your lives as well. That was the first five years, can't wait to see what happens in the next five!