Church Highlight: Christ City
Name of your church: Christ City Church
Location of church: Miami
Date church was planted: January 15 2012
Name of partnering church (es): Providence Road Church, Reconcile Church Miami
What are the reasons you decided to plant a church in your city? I have lived in Miami for over 30 years. The Lord called me out darkness as young man in this city and ever since my heart grieves for the many who are lost in our city. This was the foundational reason for my subjective desire to plant a church in Miami but through leaders in our sending church and through the out workings of God’s grace through His local church it was made obvious to us that church planting was what God had called us to and Miami was our city.
What have you seen the Lord do in and through your church/church plant? Throughout our short history we have seen God do some awesome things. Over the past 6 months we have seen God grow us in many ways. As a leadership team we have begun to really be able to be more clear in our mission and the methods that are faithful to our mission. We are making more connections with what we call our geographical circle of accountability and starting to partner up with a local hospital and other non-profits to get the Gospel presented before every man, woman, and child.
One of the things we have been focusing more on is prayer. We have a faithful group of people meeting up weekly for prayer and we have seen God answer many of them. In January we welcomed 16 adults into membership and over the past 6 months we have baptized 9 people and we have 15-20 folks that we need to start walking through the membership process. We saw an 18% increase in our giving in the last quarter of 2015 and we started 2016 with nearly 70 adults engaging in our small groups throughout the week.
Most importantly we have young men whom we are discipling and we are seeing them grow before our eyes. We could see a few of them become church planters in God’s timing. We are also excited about working with a group in Nicaragua and are traveling there two times a year with the goal of planting Gospel preaching churches there. We are currently preaching to them through Skype every other Sunday night and we are seeing the group continue to grow.
What do you hope to see the Lord do in and through your church in the future? We hope and believe that the Lord will use Christ City as a place of rest for weary and broken souls. Not too many churches in our city preach the Gospel of grace through faith in the perfect finished work of Jesus and as a result we have a city of delusional or depressed individuals who seek hope in every else but Christ. But God is building up a place where the broken will come and find rest. We have a vision to build a Christian Counseling center in our community and have started to make the investments possible to get it done. Our goal is to saturate our community with one thing and one thing only, Christ and Him crucified for the forgiveness of sin.
We also want to duplicate ourselves by identifying, equipping, and funding church planters that would share our same values and goals for our city; to present the Gospel to every man, woman, and child in our local communities.
What advice do you have for current or future church planters? Find a church you can serve, a people to love and a leadership you can summit yourself under and be completely open about your heart desires, your struggles, and your living. If God has called you to plant, the church will identify that calling in you. Don’t try to make it happen on your own strength. Nevertheless be diligent in preparing your heart and mind to shepherd the people of God. Too many church planters are good CEO’s and not good under-shepherds of the good shepherd.
What else would you like to share with the readers of our blog? I respect all my brothers who are in the trenches of church planting. Christ City prays for you every week and we love you in Christ. Any time you visit Miami come spend some time with us!
What are your 3-4 main prayer requests?
- A Worship Pastor– The young man who leads us right now is faithful but He has limited time available. He is a musician and a faithful brother in the Lord who serves us as best he can.
- A permanent location- We have a good relationship with the school where we meet but they sometimes need the building in our time slot and we scramble to meet some where else.
- We are believing God to raise up a counseling ministry at CCC. We counsel many couples and monthly we receive calls from couples in trouble outside our church. We want to equip some of our people and open a counseling ministry to our community. Miami is a very broken city where divorce and broken homes is by percentage the second highest in America.
- Finances -Our budget has always been bare bones compared with other church plants. Mainly because when we started we had no clue what we were doing, (just being honest). We were 7 families on our own with no guidance whatsoever as to what it would take financially to support this church plant. As we get older as a church it becomes more challenging to get any funding from any organizations. Miami is one of the most expensive cities to church plant in. We also face the reality that the people we reach have no background in tithing or generous giving. So it has been a process of discipleship to get people excited with what God is doing and how they are part of it. Even though we only have $1,000 a month of outside funding coming in this year we as a church are trusting God to meet our budget of $130,000 for the year with our own giving. But this budget leaves us no room for certain things we need to purchase and projects we would like to be more involved in. So please pray for us and consider, in whatever capacity you can help us.