07 Aug Thank You for Helping Us Plant The Trinity Church
This NEW Ministry Update blog will help you stay up to speed with what is happening at Mark Driscoll Ministries where God is gracious and we’re staying busy.
This Sunday marks the second anniversary of the planting of The Trinity Church in Scottsdale, Arizona. I want to thank everyone at Mark Driscoll Ministries who partners with us in prayer and generosity. Your partnership was crucial in helping us plant a wonderful church that has already bought and renovated a building, grown quickly, and seen many people meet Jesus as God and Savior! Phoenix is hot, but hell is hotter. If you live near or are visiting the Phoenix valley, please join us on a Sunday (details at thetrinitychurch.com). If you’ve got friends near us, send them to visit. If you have enemies that live near us, send them too; we’ll do our best to help them get sorted out for you.
The following is an excerpt about our family and church family from my latest book, Spirit-Filled Jesusdue out in October for y’all who wanna know what we’re up to. You can pre-order the book at Amazon [link]and learn to live by His power:
My wife Grace and I have five kids—three boys and two girls. We moved to Arizona for a hard reset of life and ministry after years of feeling like a crash test dummy in a car with no airbags. After about two decades in ministry, I took some time off to heal up before entering the next season of God’s will for our life. For some months, we had church in our home as a family on Sunday mornings before we relocated for safety reasons. Our kids got it organized with one leading singing, one reading Scripture, one leading prayer, one collecting the offering (the youngest wanted to gather money for a single mom), one organizing communion, and me being the Bible teacher. Before long, some family and friends were joining us. Our kids added a children’s nursery in our playroom and started cooking breakfast for those who came to visit. Soon, our kids were running a fun little house church that grew to be a full house before we moved out of state. This joyful season allowed our kids and other people to heal up from a rough season.
Our kids enjoyed that experience so much that they started brainstorming planting a church together as a family project some months after we landed in Arizona. The first church my wife Grace and I planted, we were just twenty-five years of age with no children. Over the years when the kids came along, complex and challenging situations made it increasingly difficult for my wife and our kids to be much involved. This time, however, could be different and we could plant a church as a family ministry.
So, we started meeting over dinner to brainstorm the new church. The kids picked the name The Trinity Church to honor their grandparents on Grace’s side, who planted and pastored a church by that name for more than forty years until Grandpa passed away. Amazingly, the domain thetrinitychurch.com was available for cheap, so we bought it. We started praying about how we wanted to start a church as a family that welcomed other families. It was a lot of fun, and the kids helped architect the entire church. I will never forget the dinnertime conversation where one of the youngest children asked me, “Dad, am I on the church board?”
And I chuckled, smiled, and said something like, “Yeah, I guess you are, but since you are a minor it has to be unofficial.”
Each night at dinner, we prayed for specific things. We didn’t really know anyone beyond a few people or have anything, so we needed God to figure out everything. Our big prayer was for a building. God did a miracle. The first time I saw our church plant home was with our youngest son. He’d just finished baseball practice one night, and we drove by to see it. He said he felt like it was God’s will for us to have that building, so he took off his ball cap, raised his hand and standing out front in the dark he asked the Lord to give it to us.
God answered my little buddy’s prayer, and in a crazy God story, we got a church building. It was a fifty-year-old church that needed a lot of work, so my kids put on work gloves and spent the hot Arizona summer doing demolition to renovate an old church building. I came downstairs early one Saturday and sitting on the couch were our sons wearing gloves and prepared to go to work. I asked them what they were doing up so early, and they said they were my associate pastors ready to go to work for the day. I smiled and choked back tears. There is nothing more encouraging than seeing the Spirit at work in your family. There is nothing better than serving the Lord with your family.
Before long, other families joined us at our work projects. We are not a perfect family, and like all kids and parents, we work through our stuff. But it has been one of the great joys of my life to see the Spirit at work in our kids and to be able to serve the Lord together in ministry.