Pruning and abiding in Perth, Australia
Testimony by fam. Lockwood
How do you remain as TOM when your missional contexts have shut down? When the season is of pruning and abiding, and focussing on character and discipleship, rather than pushing out in mission? When you’re running a church and all that that entails (healthy and otherwise!)? That’s the question we’ve been wrestling with in the Order of Mission in the eastern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia.
Malcolm and Cheryl Potts oversee both chapters of TOM in Perth (east and west) and remain a rock and inspiration in turbulent times. We meet as TOM East monthly to encourage and pray for one another; and meet weekly with another local TOM family for dinner (Luke, Kerrin, Micah (2 ½) and baby Josiah). It’s been a wonderful time of growing as an extended family together: eating, praying, playing board games and laughing together. Micah has prayed completely unprompted every night for the last six months for “Aunty Kat, Uncle Nick, Aliyah and Elizabeth”. It’s only just recently that he’s finally decided to add his grandparents to the list! A real joy was the moment last week when Micah called our girls his “brothers [meaning sisters]”. It really shows us that our two families have become one through our regular meeting together.
We’ve discovered the real strength and joy of TOM for us has been gathering and encouraging one another as fellow ministry families. It’s good for us and for our children to share our battles and wins with others who get it! If there were a shape to describe our present season of life together, it would be the semi-circle. Seasons of past fruitfulness have given way over the past year to a season of pruning, and the inevitable refocusing of our covenant identity in Christ. Anyone who knows the thrill of fruitfulness and the inevitable despair of pruning will be able to relate! Mission in this season has been hard and the struggle to remain outwardly focussed is real!
Luke and Kerrin are about to have a go at launching another missional community via Saturday morning pancakes and a toy library, so they would appreciate your prayers as they go forward in that. Katherine works in a high school with so many opportunities to share the gospel with students, so would always love prayer for more hearts and lives open to Jesus. Nicholas is working with leaders in our church who have their own missional contexts, helping them to get the foundations of discipleship happening again. We’ve worked towards and won the battle to read the Bible and pray together as a family as our girls hit the pre-teen years, and for us, raising these hearts to love Jesus, his church and the world is our highest calling and greatest pleasure.
Sending love to you all, from the Eastside West Aussie TOMmies
the Lockwoods: Nicholas, Katherine, Elizabeth and Aliyah
And the Williams: Luke, Kerin, Micah and Josiah