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Why Sonoran Community Church?

Inevitably, someone will always ask me, "Why are you planting a church in Casa Grande?". The answer to that really comes down to two factors: The moving and call of the Holy Spirit on our lives to do so and a desire to proclaim Christ.

The Call of the Holy Spirit

I have been working in Christian ministry for over a decade and one thing that I have learned is that if we undertake a project for God, whether that is a new ministry, a new church, or a new position, if we started that project without a call of the Holy Spirit on us then one of two things will happen:

First, we will build that project on our own power and pride. We will build up our own personalities in order to build our own kingdom. In the end we will find that we neglected the Kingdom of God and that the "results" we saw were not rooted in a firm foundation in Christ, but in ourselves. This is partly why we see so many failures of Christian leaders that destroy churches and movements: even though the intentions to start with were good, if we build that project on our own personality as the pastor/leader then the eventual result will be spiritual disaster for all involved and great hurt to the witness of Christ and the Church.

Second, we don't receive a call from the Holy Spirit but we manufacture one like Don Quixote's windmills and chase it down. While we are depending on God and our desires may be honorable, this is like a soldier on a one man charge without consulting his commanding officer first: we're out of line. The end result may be something useful but not something which God has blessed. Most often, the result is dismal and lackluster.

These reasons are why we spent 6 months to a year seeking the face of God about where He wanted us to go. As a couple, Amanda and I prayed over 14 places to plant or pastor but either we did not have the permission of the Holy Spirit, we were forbidden by the Holy Spirit, or we received silence. While on a trip in AZ to speak at a church near Tucson, we decided to take a drive up towards the PHX area and we came across Casa Grande and decided to drive around. In the middle of driving around that afternoon, both Amanda and I were simultaneously moved by the Holy Spirit that this was the place God had called us to. We ended up spending several days in town speaking with other pastors and visiting the sites. It became an absolute clarity that this was where God wanted us to work in His fields next.

A Desire to Proclaim Christ

All too often, ministry leaders (myself included way too many times) desire people to come to our churches to hear us preach and teach and hear our eloquent wisdom. I learned with great difficulty that this was not the way of Jesus. I spent several years trying to get people to hear me talk about Christ and not hear Christ Himself. I wanted people to hear my wisdom over the wisdom of the Holy Spirit. I wanted people to talk about my sermons instead of making the name of Jesus and His Gospel famous. God taught me that if I wanted to participate with Him in His work I would need to change this.

Now, after much soul-searching and heartache and hours spent in repentance and seeking God's face, my desire is not for people to come to my church and hear my sermons and be amazed at my wisdom. My desire is that you would somehow, in spite of my failures and human weakness, to see Jesus, know Him, love Him, and be captivated by His glory. I desire that you would learn from Him what it means to live a flourishing life as a human being. I desire that you would follow Him and not me or my church.

So, why Sonoran Community Church? Because the Holy Spirit has moved on our hearts to proclaim the name and fame of Christ to all we can. We desire that somehow, in spite of our humanness, the Holy Spirit would use us in some small way to draw you closer to Jesus and that you would find in Him the Living Waters that will satisfy your soul.

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