Dedicated to reaching their neighbors, Lori and Russell partnered with another HCBC family two doors down to host a Neighborhood Gathering on their street.
Their co-hosts created invitations from the HCBC website, and Lori prepared herself to share the initiative.
“I read through the FAQ and watched all four weekly videos before inviting neighbors. I wanted to better understand what it was I was inviting them to,” she said.
To test the waters, Lori decided to first invite a neighbor she knows the best – one who also has no personal relationship with God. “Over the last 16 years that we have been neighbors, I’ve invited her to church, engaged in spiritual discussions and prayed for her, but she and her husband are very clear that church is not for them. We are still good friends though and I felt most comfortable practicing on them.”
“It is always such a great feeling when you know you are being obedient to God and that you are where He wants you to be.”
“To my relief both of them had already heard about LWYL,” Lori said. “They were very interested and really liked the idea. I was even able to convince my friend to go with me to hand out the invitations!”
Having her neighbor by her side while welcoming others to join the Neighborhood Gathering proved extremely helpful. One neighbor in particular was unwilling to listen to Lori, but responded to the other neighbor better.
“She became defensive and didn’t want to hear anymore about it,” Lori said. “Thankfully, my non-church neighbor who was helping me deliver the invitations was able to convince her… and she was able to fully understand the intentions. I am convinced if my non-church friend had not been with me, this other neighbor would never have believed me.”
Prepped and ready with invitations extended, Lori and Russell are anxiously waiting to see what God will do as their Neighborhood Gathering kicks off, especially after already witnessing Him pave paths for new relationships by simply inviting neighbors. “It is always such a great feeling when you know you are being obedient to God and that you are where He wants you to be,” she said. “We are again trusting God with the outcome.”