Planting Partnership - The Kennedy's
Two years ago, God led our family to visit the Village Church. We knew from that first Sunday that we had found our new church home. The name of Jesus was pretty constantly on peopleâ€™s lips, both in the pulpit and in conversations around the building. And we were overwhelmed by how welcoming people were from the very beginning.
Godâ€™s providence in planting us at the Village became clear very quickly. Between lunches and conversations with the elders, getting plugged into a community group, learning and working alongside the Apprentice Academy men and their wives, and sharing times of fellowship with other families in the church, we were able to build a number of friendships that felt much deeper than a few short months would allow.
Then, just as we were feeling very settled at the Village, God led us through a time of testing. For a number of years, we had desired to be closer to extended family in northern California, but God consistently kept the door closed to us moving up north. That door suddenly opened in early 2013, as Shawnâ€™s business brought a new freedom of movement and the opportunity came to sell our home. At the same time, a new motivation surfaced when Shawnâ€™s mother was diagnosed with cancer. We decided to test the waters by putting our house on the market, and soon found ourselves with no more physical ties to Orange County when our house sold in a matter of hours.
That began a hectic process of determining whether we should move up north. Many factors pointed up north, including lots of family, cheap housing, and familiar surroundings. Yet one thing consistently gave us pause: our church. We had a growing sense of sadness at moving away from the church family that we had come to love. Ultimately, we determined that God wasnâ€™t done with us at the Village, so instead of moving up north, we made the move to Portola Springs in Irvine.
Since then, God has confirmed that he wants us to continue being planted at the Village. Weâ€™ve had the pleasure and privilege of starting up a new community group and seeing Jesus working to build bonds of love and inspire generosity among the members of our group. It was incredible to see when, about a month ago, our group came together and committed to provide a place to live for one of the families in our group who was in need. Though our new neighborhood has brought some practical difficulties, itâ€™s also brought opportunities to reach across cultural barriers and start building relationships with our neighbors for the sake of the gospel. More than ever, we are convinced that God wants us to be on mission with the Village Church. Weâ€™re excited to partner with you in that.