I joined Second Chance Church (SCC) October 1st, 2011. I remember fielding a call from Pastor Matt Robinson asking me to come lead worship at their very first Worship Experience.
They were meeting at Castleton Church of the Nazarene on Saturday nights, which gave me the opportunity to continue serving at Westside Church of the Nazarene, which we loved.
Immediately when I entered the doors, I knew I was home.
I knew it was going to be an adjustment.
I knew it was going to be a fight with my wife, especially if they ever went to Sundays.
When I pulled out of the parking lot after that Worship Experience, my language describing SCC immediately changed from “they” to “we.”
I was in.
The vision, the people, the music, the teaching, the culture…
I. Was. In.
This location was so vital for us. That church was so helpful in providing us a space to grow and cut our teeth. After 11 months though, we were quickly outgrowing the need for just a Saturday service.
Indiana Wesleyan Campus (Keystone)
The fireworks were really about to go off in my house because that summer in 2012 I fielded yet another call from Pastor Matt saying, “it’s time…we’re going to Sunday’s in September.”
We found this beautiful building to rent in Keystone, which meant still setting up all of the equipment then tearing it down after service and putting it back into storage…every single week.
Amy and I had many discussions about this transition. False. I said, “we are leaving Westside to help SCC plant on the north side.”
Amy, being the Godly woman she is, deep down knew I was following God and she obviously followed.
September 30, 2012 we had our Grand Opening at our new home.
The set list was:
It was an absolute blast. At that point we were off to the races. In that building alone, spanning 2012-2016, we saw well over 150 salvations, 40+ baptisms, people finding their giftedness in the Lord, marriages restored, marriages hurt, frustration, joy, sadness, gladness, and every other type of emotion you can “feel.”
You see, even through the disgusting parts of the last 4 years, we did the journey together. That statement alone is so beautiful. We hurt together, we worshipped together, we fought together, we ate together, and we even cried together. People left. People came.
All the things a family does, we did.
Many family dynamics changed within those four years:
Amy and I were blessed with another beautiful son, Jack, in 2014.
Tim and Marla Hood adopted two children.
We lost leaders. We gained leaders.
We lost pastors. We gained pastors.
We saw families get baptized together.
We saw two of our key leaders fall in love and get married this past January.
There has been so much to celebrate. There has been so much to mourn. Yet, even in the mourning, Jesus is present.
Even in the hell we’ve experienced…Jesus is present.
It’s crazy to think how much has happened in these past four years. The past five months, however, so much has changed it’s been mind boggling.
The church was devastated by losing two of our pastors in late March of this year. Leaders came out of nowhere, though. People chose to stay despite the pain, confusion, and frustration with what had taken place.
People chose to fight for the mission of SCC.
People chose to pray for the families affected by the hurt.
People chose to get into the space where the church is actually supposed to live.
It was tragically beautiful…
After the sudden change in leadership, Pastor Dave Alderson was made interim pastor. He navigated us through waters he didn’t ask for. I guarantee he never dreamed of dealing with something like this, and I promise he never wants to go through it again.
And guess what? He lead us like Jesus.
Pastor Dave…I know you’re reading this. The reason people stuck around and fought was because you and Patti sought Jesus in leading us. I know you two were hurt, you were angry, and often times you woke up saying, “I literally can’t do this.” You were right…you couldn’t…which is exactly why you could.
I thank you for that. People who will find Jesus in Plainfield for the first time ever thank you for that.
Our new Pastor, Chad Parks, was named Co-Pastor with Pastor Dave soon after the transition started to take place. His heart was determined, as all of ours were, to ultimately get to Plainfield.
We felt momentum, we felt influence, and we felt the Lord prodding us over to this side of Indianapolis.
We found our new home around 6 weeks ago. It’s located at 238 N. Vine St. Plainfield, IN 46168. This building is the new home of SCC.
This is a building that will allow us to continue our journey together.
This is a building some of us will get emotionally hurt in.
This is a building people will find Jesus and hope.
This is a building where more pages of our story will be written.
Please don’t hesitate to grieve and mourn the pain we will endure at times. However, don’t you dare hesitate to thank God for it because it’s in those times our affections for Jesus are solidified.
You see, if this life was all about our happiness only, then it would mean we are God. The fact that God is for God should bring relief to you, as Pastor Matt Chandler so eloquently puts it – sermon here.
We aren’t the point. Jesus is. If that weren’t the case then the sovereignty of God would be diminished and mortal. I definitely wouldn’t have given the majority of my life to serving the Lord if this whole thing was about me. I make a terrible God.
I have great news for you as well…you make a terrible God too!
I can’t wait for our Plainfield story to be written. The first words were penned this morning at 11a.
Thank you in advance, from someone, who has been through all three of these phases…thank you for sticking with us. Thank you for fighting…
For the new ones…thank you just as much…
We can’t wait to love you.