Hello Everyone –
It has been awhile since I updated you on our progress with Kingdom Encounters – which is the church plant we launched last October 2014. For nine months we were blessed to use Grace University for our meeting place on Sunday mornings, but have now moved into a nice facility that we have access to 24 hours a day seven days a week. This is a night view above.
God has been very faithful to bring us exactly what we needed when we needed it. Many items have been donated to us from individuals and pastors, churches and businesses without us asking for them. The right item would just show up at the right time such as these free cabinets, power point projector, refrigerator, screen, stools, copier, lights, tables, chairs, and many others. Let me give you another example.
One of my leaders and I were looking at some banquet chairs for sale in downtown Omaha, and at one point we shared that maybe we should buy them, but then I felt that the Lord had provided everything else to that point right when we needed it, and it was still six weeks out until we would be in our new building, so we decided not to buy them. Then four weeks later a local church contacted me and gave us 120 chairs for our use and you can see the picture here. That decision to wait saved us nearly $2000.00.
Let me also share how we got such a nice building. We had made a bid on this building, but it was rejected, so we made a higher bid but we were outbid by a salon, so then our son Jason found another building that might work for us, but I kept my eye on the first building and the for lease sign never disappeared. One day while driving by the exit for that building I simply said to God, I wished we could have the first building and God told me to ask Him for it, so I kind of asked Him with very little faith. Later my realtor told me that the salon deal fell through and that the landlord for the building I wanted had fired his realtor, so I was given his name and urged to go talk to him directly and we made a deal that day and neither of us had to pay realtor fees either as this was the offer from my realtor not to charge us. It was a God thing for sure. It is a beautiful building inside and out. We did work very hard doing landscaping, painting, building walls for our children’s ministry, building a sound booth, and many other tasks, but it has been well worth it. Notice Jason welcoming you in this picture above.
We recently have been doing a lot of outreaches including feeding free ice-cream to hundreds of people in public settings and outdoor concerts, praying for some and leading others to Jesus. Each of our home groups does an outreach quarterly and we recently passed out fresh baked cookies to the neighborhood and shared Jesus and prayed and saw miracles, healing and many other wonderful opportunities happen. We also participated in a street ministry healing service and saw the power of God displayed to homeless people as well.
We hosted a marketplace emphasis Sunday with the President of Grace University and his wife sharing, plus our County Treasurer and his wife who leads a large volunteer organization plus the Chief Operating Officer at a large Commercial Real Estate Company. They all shared how God uses them in the marketplace and we also watched a transformation DVD from Ed Silvoso and then we had a wonderful Hawaiian theme luncheon together. Every family member received a free copy of Ed Silvoso’s book “Anointed for Business.”
The next week we centered in on the marketplace and businesses located around our new location and took information about Kingdom Encounters plus some coupons from other believing business leaders in the area who wanted to participate with us. We went into multiple businesses and prayed with managers and business leaders who then gave us permission to pray with other employees and customers too, and we actually prayed with and witnessed to 43 people in one night and a total of 100 total strangers in three weeks as well.
I continually challenge our folks to pray to Jesus and then look for one person each day to pray with, witness too or encourage with Godly influence and they are rising to the challenge. We are seeing new converts come to church, one man even walking for two hours to get here. Some of our people responded that this is a HUGE stretch for them, yet they are learning, liking it and growing rapidly in their faith and ability to witness on the spot to total strangers. Proverbs says that the fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he that wins souls is wise.
We also launched a new ministry we call First Sunday Feeding First Responders where we have permission from the City of Omaha to go and serve lunch to certain fire stations on the first Sundays of each month. We hope to expand this to many other stations as we grow. And we are starting a Nebraska football outreach when there are away games, and we will have host homes for folks to come and watch the game and eat and then during halftime we will share testimonies and offer prayer for unsaved and unchurched friends to get to know Jesus better.
Keep in mind we are not even eleven months old yet, but have some really amazing things happening that God is clearly orchestrating. We have a couple of sayings that are important to us. We embrace what God is doing and not what He is not doing. And the other is that this is a new way not to do church. We truly are a church that welcomes the supernatural and where everyone gets to play. Each Sunday we stop and have a testimony time in the service and often we have 6 to 10 testimonies of what God is doing in their lives. It is inspiring, fun, and everyone is so excited to be a part of a Kingdom Encounter.
By the way – some of our DNA includes – four memberships instead of just one. We don’t pass the offering plates on Sunday morning. Each week all I say is that there is a basket by the door if people want to give. We also don’t do announcements on Sunday mornings, but instead use technology, our face-book page and our home groups to share those. This gives us time to learn and practice one of the gifts of the Spirit each week. These practice sessions have been so helpful in growing our people’s faith to then use those gifts in public with total strangers, friends, business partners, family members and others they come in contact with. One of our core values is that we would rather people try and fail and try again, rather than never try at all. We are all about discipleship. God is working in so many lives and we are so grateful as we cultivate a culture of revival and one of honor.
So that gives you a glimpse. Please keep us in prayer. Thank you so much for reading this blog today. Lord Jesus, please bring your presence to the person reading this now and let them experience you in a real way. I pray that they have a Kingdom Encounter right where they are, and that your anointing will touch them and bring provision, healing, restoration or any other answer to prayer that they are seeking this day. Thank you Jesus for being our Savior, Lord and our very best friend. We are grateful. Amen and Fresh Oil. ( instead of amen we often say fresh oil if we like something that happens when we meet.) Psalm 92:10 declares that we will be anointed with fresh oil.
Pastor Jay West
Kingdom Encounters – Omaha, Nebraska