While restoration is underway at the 8th Street Church, we are sharing the dreams God has given us for the 8th Street building and our new neighborhood. Emily first shared her 8th Street Dreams during our service on August 20, 2017.
When thinking about my 8th street dreams, I first need to share the story of how ended up here and how I am now able to have dreams about a church. Growing up, church was the place were I felt comfortable. It was the place where I spent all of my time and where I grew not only in my faith but as a person. It was a place were I had strong relationships with not only others my age, but people older than me who shared their life experiences with me. Church growing up provided me with a second home where it was ok for me to be me and me to grow.
Then, as an adult living in a large city, I found myself unable to find a church in which I felt recognized and a part of a family who cared about me. In November 2015, I turned 30, and I was extremely lonely. Specifically, I had given up on finding a church. I didn’t see where I fit into the large churches in the metro. I resigned myself to a lonely life, which included work, my dog and home. Luckily, God had other plans for my life.
On Superbowl Sunday 2016, I called my cousins because I wanted to spend time with them and their 2-year-old son. They told me I was welcome to hang out, but they would be going to this new church plant, and I was welcome to come. So I went along thinking I would go to church and after get to spend time with my family. Little did I know that this Sunday would change my life.
In May, during the series on 8th street dreams, I found myself up all night convicted that I needed to give to this new church which had captured my heart. I want to read you my journal entry from that day.
“About a year ago I started attending Midtown Church. Shortly after coming for the first time my grandfather passed away. In the year that followed by sister and her husband moved from OKC to Phoenix, and my cousins who brought me here moved back home. During this time, I have seen less of my family than ever before. My sister is hours away, and my parents have been busy taking care of my grandmother so I see them much less. My whole life my family has been my everything. Being 30 and single, you lean on family because most nights you go home to a quiet and silent house.
In the last several months I have learned that God gives us all family—it just may just look different. Psalm 68:8 says “God sets the lonely in families.” This couldn’t be more true to me. Midtown has truly been a gift to me. God has placed this lonely girl in This Family. It amazes me how in such a short time I have grown to call this place home and family. I look at my parish group like my brothers and sisters. People I know in a minute would be there for me and vice versa. More importantly, they are encouraging me in my walk with Christ. Simply put: I belong at Midtown, and it is purely God-driven."
So you see, my dream for our new church is that God would continue to place the lonely into families. That we as a congregation would reach out to the lonely like Holly Pollock did for me in January and provide the encouragement needed for them to find their home/family. Sometimes it takes a big leap to try something new, and often it is scary, but when God is involved it is always right. Thank you for letting me share and most importantly thank you for being my family.
It takes work (& money) to make our dreams come true. Will you join us? You can give online through our parent church, Bethany First Church of the Nazarene; make sure to mark your gift for "Midtown- 8th Street Project." You can also send cash or check to PO Box 76266, Oklahoma City, OK 73147. Contact Pastor Chris Pollock at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions about giving.