The story of church revitalization at Northwest Church . . . how it became a community center with a church.
Most of us want our churches to go boldly into our communities. If that’s you, check out the incredible story of Northwest Church in the Seattle area.
Northwest is a 90+ year old church. It’s original location was zoned residential, so it could never grow. Decade after decade it would try, but the city would simply not allow Northwest to expand. In recent years it all came to a head . . . Northwest wanted church revitalization. Something had to happen.
Church leaders focused on prayer. They put out a fleece. They asked Jesus to clearly speak by August of that year if they were to relocate. If nothing happened, the church would continue to do its best in its historic location.
What happened next is incredible. Through an unlikely series of events, Northwest was able to sell its existing property and simultaneously buy a much larger one. It happened one week before the August deadline. The all-cash deal even allowed for enough money to fully revitalize the new building without incurring debt. The church stepped out in faith and God showed He is faithful.
BUILDING A COMMUNITY CENTER TO HOUSE A CHURCH
Northwest’s story doesn’t end with real estate. It wanted not only revitalization of its building, but revitalization of its mission. God was directing Northwest to serve its new community. The church met its new neighbors and surveyed the needs of the neighborhood. They found a nearby senior living center, so they brought Christmas gifts to each resident. They heard that local police and firefighters needed a place to train, so Northwest opened the new building to them.
The community had many uninsured people in need of dental care, so it provided space to Puget Sound Christian Clinic. There is now a first class place for people to get quality dental care regardless of their financial status. Northwest designed its 45,000 square foot building to be a community center that happens to house a church.
Six days a week the building is Community Life Center. It’s alive with civic programs and services. On Sunday the building is Northwest Church. It’s an inspiring story of a church that thinks differently. It’s vision, faith and leadership that can be seen lived out every day.
Click below to receive an email update whenever there’s a new post on Practical Leadership: