Our first week in Denver has gone pretty well, so far. The apartment is looking great! It’s been hot here during the day, near the 100’s every afternoon, but it cools down so much at night, that it doesn’t seem so bad.
Sunday we tried our first church. We went to Denver Community Church, where our friends Joel and Marlin go. The service was nice, and I really liked the venue, but I wasn’t fully able to concentrate on the message. Coleman could tell, I think, because he kept nudging me and asking if I was ok. I told myself that we don’t need to find a church here exactly like CCB, that we just need one we like enough to attend every Sunday. But, it was hard not to compare.
At the end of the service, Joel introduced us to a couple who had been sitting a few rows in front of us. I noticed them during the service because they were pretty much the only fifty-somethings in a room full of twenty-somethings. Their names were Phil and Gail, and as soon as we started talking, I realized that I had met Gail a few years ago at Young Life camp! Not only did we have our camp experience in common, but she knew all of the people we did Young Life with in high school and college. After talking for about 15 minutes, Coleman and I traded phone numbers with them, and promised to get together sometime soon.
Sure enough, Tuesday morning, Phil called and asked us if we would want to meet them for dinner. Seeing as we have no friends and no plans, we quickly agreed to meet them that night at an old pizza place in downtown Denver.
We all sat down and ordered the “Kitchen Sink” (really, that’s what the pizza was called) and started chatting about ourselves. Phil asked us about our church history and our experiences in ministry, and Coleman and I ended up bragging about CCB for a good 30 minutes. Afterward, I apologized for talking so much, and Phil said that, on the contrary, he was moved by our passion for the church we had left and wanted to know more about it.
It turns out that Phil and Gail had an agenda in asking us to dinner–they’re starting a church! Gail said that after our quick conversation at church a few days before, they left feeling like they needed to share their new project with us. And Phil, after hearing us brag so much about Derek and the mission of CCB, said that the church he has in his mind sounds just like what we had in Atlanta!
We talked theology and social justice and missions and all the usual stuff you discuss over pizza with people you don’t know, and three hours later, we had another “date” set with our new friends to further discuss church things a few weeks from now.
Sunday was Phil and Gail’s first time attending Denver Community Church, and although Gail didn’t really enjoy it, she told Phil as they drove home that maybe the reason they attended that morning was to meet us. Funny thing is, I said the same thing to Coleman as we drove home. Hmm…