Ten minutes after looking over her surprisingly, empty calendar for the month of June, Kewanna Mickens received a call from our Global Pastor, Chip Bugnar. He wanted to know if she would consider being a part of the Roots & Reach Mission Project Team, which would require an especially heavy investment in the month of June. She was honored, humbled, and immediately thought, “Ok, Lord. That’s why my calendar is clear, so my attention would be devoted to this.”
Now, as we are wrapping up our month-long focus of the “Unhindered” reading and prayer guide, Kewanna is excited about how God has been working through the month He not only set apart for her, but for our faith family. One of the most encouraging takeaways to her from our time in Acts has been seeing the early church press themselves into the Lord, the Word, and each together, all in the face of obstacles and hardships. Her prayer, and the Roots & Reach Mission Project Team’s prayer, is that we would carry forward this same unity among our church body. “The simple message of Acts is togetherness: unification, helping one another, encouraging one another, taking on the burdens of one another. That is a simple message we as a team want to get across. These are simple things we are commanded to do, and as a body we can achieve them.”
The message of unification has been a constant desire of the team. In fact, Kewanna said, “A month before Unhindered was announced to the body, the team had already been fasting and praying for how we could be unified as a body, and as a team. I hope this has been a time for us as a church family to see we are one body. We all have various gifts. Our Father has put us together at Brook Hills to achieve His purpose.”
They have been hard at work throughout June, looking to God for guidance in what His purposes for us may be. After immersing themselves in meetings to hear updates about the realities of global lostness in the world and the needs emerging in the city, they spent time praying, fasting, resting in the Word, and seeking dependence on the Lord above all. Kewanna used the analogy of gardening to describe this time. “So far, we’ve been waiting on Him to prepare the soil and bring the rain so that it’s easier for us to till the ground. It may not seem like we’re making a big impact in the beginning, by just planting a seed and putting a little water to it. But eventually, that one seed is going to produce and the roots are going to go so deep that it’s going to grow and get bigger and make such an impact. We can’t see it right now, how big the impact will be, but what we can do is be obedient and plant the seeds.”
Now, the team is carefully considering which seeds are showing the most promise to sprout and grow into effective mission opportunities. Pastor Chip said, “We’ve desired to partner with others whose projects remain consistent with our DNA and are broader than what we might be able to accomplish in any given budget year. The needs of unreached peoples and their lack of resources for gospel proclamation, church planting, and developing healthy leadership have been on our hearts and minds. Strengthening the global church has been on our radar and the needs are immense. Even hearing from City Ministries Pastor, Keith Stanley, about some of the challenges we face in Birmingham has weighed on us.”
Kewanna and the team are excited about the possibility of taking active steps forward and seeing where the Lord leads us next. “He wants to use Brook Hills as a conduit to do great things for His kingdom, to make His name known, to heal hearts, to bring wanderers back into the fold, and to share the gospel with people who have never heard it. Let’s start planting seeds, prune what’s started to blossom, encourage the seeds that have already been impacted to start scattering more, and start harvesting the fruit that others have begun. Let’s get our hands dirty. Let’s dig deep.”
Kewanna Mickens, and her husband Michael, have two daughters, Kezia (12) and Bethany (9). They have been members of Brook Hills for 6 years and are both involved in our Student Ministry. Michael also serves as an elder.
The Roots & Reach Mission Project Team would like to hear from you! Would you take a few minutes to share with us something you learned and a prayer for The Church at Brook Hills in light of Unhindered? Please email your reflections and prayer to firstname.lastname@example.org. We may use some of these prayers in other forms of communication to help others know how the Lord has worked through this time to shape us as a people.