You all know Love INC’s mission, right?! To mobilize local churches to transform lives and communities, In the Name of Christ. That transformation comes by connecting in relationship – with Christ & with others.
Through listening to our struggling neighbors’ stories in the Help Center, we recognized that many of those we serve do not have strong support systems around them, including missing a connection to a local church. A couple of our partner churches in Zion and Gurnee decided they wanted to engage in building those relationships and make those connections – and our Church Connections ministry was born.
A story from the mission field:
One of our struggling neighbors in Gurnee, Ms. H, expressed to us that she would interested in getting in touch with someone from a local church. We were excited to hear her interest and reached out to Matt from Lakeland Church. He and his wife have been a part of the Church Connections ministry for a little while now, calling folks in the Gurnee area. He gave Ms. H a call and got to know her over the phone. Eventually he invited her to Lakeland. She was there that next Sunday and during the service came to realize that she needed Jesus. After spending some more time talking things through with Matt’s wife, Ms. H committed her life to Christ. They prayed together, and afterward Matt and his wife asked Ms. H how she felt. She said, “It’s real.”
Shortly after that, Matt met with Ms. H., her son, and her boyfriend at a local White Castle to start the process of teaching her more of the basics of the faith and to disciple her in the way of following Jesus. By the end of the conversation even Ms. H’s boyfriend, who was initially very resistant, was starting to show an interest in the things of the Lord.
Church Connections is a ministry that our partner churches have only just begun in the past year or so. We are so excited to see what the Lord might do with it. So much potential exists in this new, relational ministry!
Going forward, we’d love for you to:
1) Keep this ministry in prayer. Relationships are hard. Discipleship is hard. The Church Connections ministers from our partner churches need endurance, grace and wisdom as they reach out to see what the Lord is doing in the lives of those around us. More than that, pray for the hearts of our struggling neighbors. It is a brave thing to ask to be connected to a local church, especially if you’ve been hurt by a church in the past. We all know that there is no such thing as a perfect congregation, so pray that the Lord would guide our neighbors to right congregation for them, and protect them as they muster the courage to meet new people and get into a church community in their town. May the Church in Lake County grow and be strengthened!
2) Prayerfully consider whether the Lord has built you to be a Church Connections Minister. Do you attend church in one of the communities in which we serve (Zion, Waukegan, North Chicago, Gurnee)? Is your church a safe place for broken people? Are you gifted in evangelism, compassion, or listening well? Please consider joining this ministry. We’d love for you to jump in and help develop a new way for Love INC and the churches of Lake County to partner together for the glory of God and the advancement of His Gospel.
Is the Lord prompting you to be involved in this way? Email us at email@example.com to connect into this essential ministry!