the last song

it was a blogpost day in march of this year, that i penned…

we left the lights on in our family apartment at 351 king street, #113.

we’ve left the lights on at the w hotel.

we’ve got the lights on at 543 howard presently and we’ll leave them on there too.

i can’t wait to turn the lights on at 250 stevenson street.

this past Sunday, we had our final service at 543 howard street.

and it was the most full of thanks and praise moment i’ve had in this city yet.

this post is interestingly packed with video, audio, maps and pictures.

not how i normally operate in my simple way of life.

{but if you see into my life, there’s nothing simple going on. at all.}

i just so much want you to know how beautiful Jesus is in our city.

how He is exalted among His people.

how He was honored in our midst on Sunday.

we’ve left the lights on because Jesus has met us there.

for what God has done, we gave thanks.

infancy in church planting happened at the w hotel with “wake up calls”  telling us there would be no kid’s space or we were bumped to the rooftop for services.

toddlerhood in church planting happened at 543 howard street where milestones occurred every week.

baptisms.

people moving here from all over the world and finding epic.

babies dedicated.

marriages restored.

small groups increase.

mission trips taken.

our church’s vision took root in us:

to see an increasing number of people in san francisco orient their entire lives around Jesus.

and for me personally, 543 howard street was the location where our middle son was baptized.

it was the place where school friends experienced church for the first time.

in my darkest moments in life, thus far, it was the place where i could sing in unison with my church family that

“You finish what You begin…”

and “when i’m lost in the madness, You’re the peace that calms my soul.”

and “we won’t move without You.”

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but at the last song of the last service, i recorded our church family singing so powerfully and gratefully, “Great Are You, Lord.”

you have to understand that two of my three kids sing passionately with each song.

you will notice as you listen now.

these were the last words that echoed off the walls of a building God gave us for 3 years.

we leave the lights on there, but asked God corporately to do far more in the new space that will hold double the kids, double the adults.

where you attend church, what are you thankful for?

if you’ve come to epic, what’s one of your favorite memories at 543 howard?

 click below to hear the message from sunday.

 

October 5th, 2014 – Found – Thank you God. from Epic Church on Vimeo.

we’ve left the lights on because Jesus met us there.

{photos courtesy of my friend, kim etzel}

6 thoughts on “the last song

  1. This post gave me goosebumps! It brings me back to the day I found Epic (through Google) around February of 2013. The very first service I attended was the 6pm one (remember that?). I had been looking for a church since coming to SF in October of 2011. Being planted in a church is a big part of who I am. My move to the US was unexpected and I knew that finding a home church was going to be a challenge. I was part of a mega church in Manila and I asked them if we had a sister church in the bay. We didn’t. I searched and searched, attended service in different parts of the bay and found nothing. I asked the holy spirit to lead me as I so desperately needed a refuge. My life was going a downward spiral from all my marital problems and I was beginning to be self destructive. I felt so distant from God and missed having a community of faith that I can grow with and serve with. From the moment I stepped into Epic, I knew I was home. I was trying to hold back tears the entire time that first service. I don’t remember the songs we sang or what Ben’s message was, but I do remember shaking his hand afterwards and with tears in my eyes I told him how glad I am to be finally ‘home’.

    I’ve met and made lifelong friends in Epic. I was baptized in Epic. I’m a proud Epic volunteer and I came to truly understand what serving others really means. I’ve been some really dark times the past 3 years but Jesus has restored me and brought me back to life through His people in Epic. You and the rest of my Epic family will probably never know how much of a positive impact y’all have made in my life. I came close to leaving the bay area several times in exchange for a more convenient and easier life. I have family and friends all over the US who are trying to convince me to just go out on my own and start fresh. But I’m still here, primarily because Epic is here and I know I can fight the good fight of faith as long as I have my Epic community. I have never been so glad, so proud, so in love with an entire church. I feel God’s hand in this community.

    I’m so grateful for what God has done in 543 Howard and I’m so excited for what He has in store for us in 250 Stevenson. To God be all the glory!

  2. I remember leaving my first service at Epic in Sep 2011, thinking “im coming back next week”. 543 howard was where my past and my future collided, and my present was changed forever. Literally. God’s awesome doing.

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