No, the world didn’t end on Saturday, but the Johnson family did finish a chapter in our lives and said farewell to one heck of an adventure.
Five years ago, BJ, myself, our two daughters and four of our friends journeyed to South Florida with a dream in our hearts and a vision from God. We began sharing this vision with anyone and everyone who would listen.
We met in coffee shops, in restuarants and gathered in homes, connecting people to this dream of planting a life-giving, authentic, fearless and fun church in the heart of Fort Lauderdale, FL.
In February of 2014, Influence Culture Church launched its first service. What a daring adventure it has been!
Before we set out on our journey across the country, the Holy Spirit shared with me that, “It’s not going to be like anything you have planned for it to be, but it will be everything you ever hoped that it would be.”
I didn’t like that statement at the time because I knew that meant my plans were not His plans and what I thought would be, most likely wasn’t going to be.
However, with every victory that we never planned for and with every hardship I didn’t feel prepared for, this promise became an anchor for my faith.
It continues to serve as an immovable anchor for me in this moment, right now as we follow His leading one more time and close the doors of Influence Culture, Fort Lauderdale.
It has been the hardest, most gut-wrenching thing we have ever had to do. And, at the same time, it’s been the most sure thing we have ever done–knowing that He is leading us, showing us and has already gone before us.
As we LOOK BACK, we are sure that nothing is wasted and that every seed that has been sown in faith, and every promise that has been made to us and to this beautiful place we’ve called home for the past 5 years, will yield fruit for the generations to come.
As we LOOK UP, we are reminded that following Jesus is the most daring adventure we will ever experience. It’s a daily surrender of our plans, our dreams and our biggest fears.
As we LOOK AHEAD, I am sure that the best is yet to come. Jesus has never failed us, nor has He ever misled us.
I’m honored that the Lord would use our church to pray audacious prayers for the city of Fort Lauderdale and that He would use a handful of willing people to fearlessly believe for a move of God like never before.
I’m grateful that Jesus has entrusted my family with this vision! It has not always been easy but it has always been worth it–being right in the middle of His perfect will for us is where we desire to be.
I’m confident that He is with us and has already gone before us in this new chapter of our lives in North Carolina, where we will serve and to lead alongside BJ’s parents. (More information to come)
I don’t think there was ever a more appropriate time to use the term…. bitter sweet than in this moment.
Influence Culture Church, FTL…. I love you, always and forever.