For those who have been following along with me on here, you may have seen some of my past blog posts talking about Eleven22 . Maybe you've seen the logo on bumpers and car windows and thought it was the name of a band. (So did I the first time I saw it.) And although Eleven22 does have an awesome band, Eleven22 is actually a church. In just a few years, it has rapidly become one of the fastest growing churches in Jacksonville if not thee fastest. (Did I just use the word "thee"?)
Anyway, I have said this before and I'll say it again. This isn't just any church. There is something different about it and that's the reason why every Sunday morning if you drive anywhere near Beach Blvd and San Pablo Road you see the ENTIRE parking lot completely full starting from Hobby Lobby going all the way back to the old Winn Dixie. (Which is now Hope's Closet.)
So just what the heck is so alluring about the place that has caused so many people to walk through the doors and keep coming back for more? People aren't supposed to just WANT to go to church right? Isn't church just place where people get told they can't have any fun in life and if they do they'll just go to hell? Isn't church the place where people put on white robes and sing very strange sounding monotonous hymns to the tune of an oversized pipe organ? Aren't Christians just self righteous people who think they're better than everyone else???
Well, that's unfortunately the perception that some people have but the truth is, it's a very big misconception. Eleven22 is different. Radically different.
Also if you're worried about it being a trend thing, believe me there is no one out there who dislikes trends more than I do. But this isn't just a trend—it's a place that is changing lives.
I often tend to write too much and I think I might be starting to again so I will try to get to my main point here quickly. If you've heard about Eleven22 and are curious to see what all the hype is about, then I encourage you to try it out. It's a really big room and the lights are down low so you can just sit in the back and slip out when it's done without having to talk to anyone. I think you will be pleasantly surprised with what you see and hear.
Ok so...I said I was going to get to the point of this post and here it is. Today's service was the conclusion of a 6 week series that Pastor Joby Martin preached on called Greater Than. This series really did some work in my heart over the last month and a half and gave me some incredible perspective to live my life by. If you're feeling up to it, you can watch the sermons online and get a taste of what this place is all about. At the end of today's sermon the pastor presented everyone with a challenge. Inside the notes handout was a pledge card. He asked that anyone who was willing to fill it out also be bold enough to take a picture of it and post it online. If you've got any Eleven22 friends on Facebook you might have seen this already but here is mine.
If you're not a Christian, then some of these words are going to sound VERY weird. Hey I've been a Christian since I was 13 years old and a lot of the stuff in the bible still sounds strange to me too. But there is some stuff in there that would actually blow your mind. For example, did you know that the apostle Paul, probably the most famous of all the apostles and the person who wrote THIRTEEN books in the bible was a Christian terrorist before he became a Christian?? Yeah, the dude went around getting Christians murdered before becoming one himself. That should tell you right there that God is a God of love and forgiveness and not some harsh hateful judge that just wants to crack down on you with a whip or a bolt of lightning. :)
Okay I've written way more than I planned to. Again.
If you read all of this and want to chat with me more then hit up the contact page and drop me a line!
(Excuse the crinkle. It was raining when church ended and I had to carry my 2 year old across the parking lot.)