My journey to finding a church to call home (at last...)
I had been praying incessantly for two things: One, a spiritual mentor to guide me and the other, a faithful church home. On two separate occasions I was certain God was leading me to where He wanted me to be- little did I know, He was taking the scenic route. One journey took me overseas to Bahamas Faith Ministries International where I sat and prayed in the sanctuary of the late Dr. Myles Munroe and the other to a local church whose pastor, Asaph Womack, I met through this website, using his anointing in music as backdrop to my article just to discover he was building a church in my town! Because I was being sent by God and I was on His mission, my natural assumption was that God's spirit in me would be recognized and in both cases, that was not the case. Dr. Myles Munroe would not be my mentor as a plane crash abruptly ended his life and his church needed to find a successor. Ironically, in his last days he said he thought God was speaking to him about "passing the baton" and he died before being able to do so.
My next journey led me to Pastor Asaph Womack of The Life Center Worship. This is a man on a mission! No matter how often I tried to convey the message, "I believe God has sent me to you in Godly service with a mission..." his response was always the same-no response. Pastor Womack is building his church in the way God placed in his heart and whatever message God had placed in my heart about being in service there, Pastor Womack did not get the same memo, so although I wish him every success, I could not call home a house I was never invited in to. If I had to describe my experience at that church it would be as if God sent a letter to the ministry (me) and it was sent back "return to sender" (God) unopened (by Pastor). My heart will always remain with my brother in Christ- just not my service.
The journey leading to Equip was a long one. Some of the experiences I have encountered earned me the nick name "the Kathy Griffin of the church world" since I tend to share my experiences unabashedly and in detail usually right here on this website (Remember the McDonald Fest article with my Bishop TD Jakes encounter?) and I remained faithful that wherever God was sending me, when I arrived I would not only know it, but the place would also receive me- this was the case with Equip Ministries.
One night I decided with my brother that I would take another church tour only this time extending my radius to reach in to Allentown, Scranton and New Jersey. After hours of internet searching, reading churches mission statements, and vision and purpose statements- my brother an I decided we would visit a church in Stroudsburg and start there. God had another plan and before I went to bed, the Lord placed on my heart to "look again" at which time Equip Ministries came in to view on my computer. Because of the name, I did not assume this a church but I recognized having seen it before. In complete obedience I went to Equip Ministries where I immediately felt home. The true test, I supposed, would be if I would be received and God made his presence known the minute I was introduced to pastor Errol and his beautiful wife, Beverly. After years of spiritual invisibility, I was finally seeing the formation of God's true church on earth, the church I prayed for in my heart. I would often say the church I'd call home will be a church like the twelve Apostles and Paul started in the first century when God's love, the life ministry, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ was shared in purity and truth- before corruption, before church bureaucracy, before church politics and before church became a conglomerate of prosperity messages. I believe it was during our first meeting when Pastor Errol stated, "I want to give a 21st century culture a 1st century church experience..." and I felt God's loving confirmation.
Since that first meeting, I have offered all of the service God has placed inside me and the Pastor and First lady has graciously accepted. I feel certain my Masters, M.Div and eventual PhD. from Liberty University School of Divinity will be put to good use to God's glory. I believe I have found my church family and church home. We are building Equip Ministries- one member and community event at a time and I invite you to join us.
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