Tag: Austin City Life

Austin City Life Vision for the Fall

We had a great Partner’s Brunch today downtown as St. Mary’s cathedral. It was so great to see a lot of people I have missed over the past few weeks. For those that missed, here is a partial update of what our church family talked about. If you’re not a partner and would like to join, be sure to sign up for Partners Class this Fall.


  • Praise God for our staff who proved that pastors are replaceable but Jesus isn’t in my absence this summer. They preached, served, and led well this summer.
  • Praise God for a better, nicer, cheaper, more city centre location to gather on Sundays–Ballet Austin–staring September 12!
  • Molly C. shared how God’s grace has been helping her getting out of debt with her City Group’s help!
  • Kristan L. shared how grateful she is for ordinary graces like a job and a healthy family.
  • Kati B. shared how she shared the gospel with six of her co-workers.


Our Sunday gathering move to Ballet Austin is an expression of our continued commitment to city renewal. We will be focusing on this very practically this Fall. As we move, we need all hands on deck to make this transition happen smoothly. Jump in, give grace, pray for those in that area of the city that we can reach. Pray for opportunities with staff and the hundreds of families that go to Austin Ballet every week.  How could we serve them, serve Ballet Austin?


  • Thank you Robie for leading Kids Life so well for the past few months!
  • New leadership: 3 leader approach: 1) Megan D: lead on Sundays 2) Kristian Lovelace scheduling 3) General pastoral leadership from Jay to move to family integrated model of children’s ministry.
  • Excited about new leadership and vision. Older and younger elementary and even middle school for 2 of our kids.
  • Reminder that raising a child takes a church not just a family. Love our kids, Show them Jesus, Keep them Safe!
  • We are making progress as a 4-Self Church: self-governing, self-theologizing, self-reproducing, self-sustaining. This next year we hope to appoint some elders. A Church Planting Intern will join us in December to plant a church in Round Rock next year.

CITY  GROUPS: 11 More City Groups in 2011!

  • Participating in a City Group is essential to really living out commands of Christ to be the church to one another and the city. Remember that City Groups aren’t an event but a community you’ve been knit together with, to share life and truth, pray for one another and the city, engage peoples and cultures, and love one another.
  • City Groups at Austin City Life are we can be the church to one another and the city. More City Groups means more people living in the Gospel, in Community, and on Mission. City Groups are where we see the city of Austin and Austinites renewed by the Gospel, one neighborhood at a time!
  • WHY 11? There is nothing special about 11…it could be 7….it could be 15. The point is we want to cast a “vision” going into next year as we call men in our church to step up and lead. We have 8 City Groups right now, 11 more in 2011 would give us 19, and from there we anticipate each group multiplying once a year. So 38 City Groups in 2012, 76 City Groups in 2013, 152 City Groups by 2014…..and so the story goes as the Gospel renews Austin!
  • HOW? First off, by Gods grace and prayer. Also, we will be making a call for leaders all of September and October leading up to our CG Leader training on Saturday October 16th. Contact Nate or Jonathan if you are interested in joining this training! This will kickstart a process for all potential leaders will they will be coached through a season of “incubation” as they develop their: 1) calling 2) core 3) identified mission. We anticipate “celebrating” the births of these new communities throughout 2011.


  • In city centre Austin 76% don’t believe Jesus is the Son of God. Let’s show and tell him that he is with grace and love. Our return to a downtown gathering is an expression of our commitment to the heart of the city–t0 usher in city renewal through the gospel–spiritually, socially, and culturally.
  • This Fall we will focus on incarnational Discipleship in Domains of the City. Consider which domains you work, live, or play in–Education, Government, Music & Arts, Social Services, Business & Tech, Media & Entertainment, Sports & Recreation. Incarnational Mission: Jesus lovingly and redemptively inserted himself into our world. Whose world are we inserting ourselves into? Are you making disciples or just making a nice life?

Non-Christians in Christian Community? (Part 2)

This is a guest post from Nate Navarro, Director of Missional Community at Austin City Life. Here is Part 1.

Travis is a successful Austin attorney in his mid 30’s who has been a part of our Missional Community for about a year. Recently, after serving together at the retirement center in our neighborhood, we had a dinner together at a central Austin cheeseburger joint. Travis, who had recently been hosting our Missional Community gatherings (without saying a word), spoke up and said:

“I don’t think it is important for married couples to both be Christians….my wife is a Christian….and I am not…..it works fine for us.”

He said it.

Though I had thought for quite some time Travis was just tolerating us for his wifes sake, now we knew it….he doesn’t believe in Jesus…in fact….he probably thinks we are crazy!


Break out the 4 spiritual laws? Take a stroll down Romans road? Throw all my best Tim Keller “Reasons For God” at him?

In a moment of sanity I looked across the table and said:

“Travis, I want to thank you for being a part of our community. It would be easy for you to just think we are crazy, instead, you have served us by hosting our gatherings at your house and even serving with us at the Retirement Center. On top of that, I think you are a cool guy and I appreciate what you bring to our community.”

Travis said, “sure…no problem….I like you guys.”

Since then Travis has been more actively involved in our community, though I am sure he still thinks we are a bit crazy with all our “Gospel-Centered” conversations.

My hope is that we will be a community who SHOWS the Gospel to Travis, and to our city…..

My hope is that we will be a community who TELLS the Gospel to Travis, and to our city….

May we do so out of LOVE and not out of the need to convince others that WE ARE RIGHT.

Missional Strategies Webinar @ Noon!

The very helpful people at New Fathom are hosting a webinar with me and Byron Blesdoe of C3 Church on Missional Strategies at 12pm CST.

I will be:

  • Sharing the story of Austin City Life
  • Discussing the formation of Missional Core Teams
  • Explaining Missional Communities

This should be helpful for church planters and missional church folk. We would love to have you join us!