Three years ago my wife Carrie and I had gone through mediation to draw up the terms of our divorce and were waiting for the date to go file at the courthouse in New Hampshire. The hopes and dreams that we had for family and full time ministry were in the rear view mirror. Or so we thought. But this isn’t that story, only a part of it. God miraculously repaired that relationship and it is flourishing today.
But because when we were separated I found a new church, our lives took a completely different direction. If we hadn’t separated, I wouldn’t have looked for a new church. If I hadn’t looked for a new church then I wouldn’t have found Next Level Church. If I hadn’t found NLC I wouldn’t have been sitting in my living room one afternoon watching a series on Nehemiah. Because it was through that message that I received “the call.”
“Go back and help restore the walls of your home.” It couldn’t have been any clearer than if there was an audible voice in the room with me. The unfortunate thing was that was the only instruction I was given. That was in the spring of 2015 when God called us out of our comfortable life in New Hampshire. How in the world did we get from that moment to where we are now as the first Canadian NLC location? When I meet with other pastors who ask that question I literally don’t even know where to start. But for the sake of your time and this post I will say this: God does not show you the whole movie…sometimes not even scene by scene, but rather step by step. What I have learned in the past year and what I want to impress upon you is two fold.
1. You will not get the whole movie. If you are in ministry and God has given you a burden and vision for something then you have the biggest part of the picture. There is an enormous responsibility in that. YOU are the one God entrusted with this vision. You have joined the ranks of the people in the bible that we tend to look up to. That is a blessing. But that is only a part.
2. This is not only about you. What I have been blessed to be able to see through us planting an NLC location here in Quebec is that time after time seeing God going before us. At the same time that God was restoring our marriage he was orchestrating events here in Quebec that would have us arrive at the precise moment we needed to be here. As he was working out getting us on board to move us here he was moving people, adjusting pieces up here in Quebec. This is an orchestra, not a solo.
So, with that comes the realization that this is just as much other people’s story as it is mine. And it is my duty to rally those people to this cause, this vision that God has placed in my heart. You might be feeling the same way. It is not enough that you have the vision. The walls would not have been restored if Nehemiah couldn't get the people to rally to the vision. I will fail if I don’t recognize the roles of the people that God has been preparing long before he called me… But take heart. He that began this work in you, and others he brings to your vision, will complete it. It is His work, after all.
Brian Lajeunesse serves as Location Pastor at Next Level’s Quebec location. Along with Carrie and their 4 kids they have been planting their location for the past year. Brian attended bible school in New Brunswick Canada, served as a pastor in northern Maine and has been pursuing his love of writing and serving the people of Quebec.