by tyler zabor
Day One: The Sunday Gathering
You arrive at the hope denver worship service to find a few college students locking up their bikes outside. A young family walks across the street from their Denver bungalow home and checks their children in for Sunday school. A woman from the retirement community down the road is being greeted by two smiling faces on the welcome team. There’s an energy and excitement in the air as you walk into the auditorium to find people worshipping the Lord with incredible passion. The pastor delivers a sermon rooted in the word of God, and she invites first time visitors to attend a connect meeting following the service. You hear about small groups for the first time, and the pastor mentions that this week, small groups will be meeting at DU to help freshman students move into the dorms. As you leave the gathering, you notice that one of the college students you saw earlier is praying with a pastor and overhear them say that they, “Encountered God for the very first time.”
Day Two: The Dreaded Monday
You’re back at work in your cubicle. But you’re thinking through the Sunday sermon and remembering that you are called to be a missionary in your own sphere of influence. You bring you coworker a cup of coffee because you know they just went through a family crisis. You let them know you’re praying for them. You bring up your church small group as a community that is already praying for them too, and mention that they are always welcome to come along.
Day Three: Tuesday Breakfast
Since you’re retired and no longer work in a cubicle like that last person, you take a college student out to breakfast who you met this past Sunday. They said it was their first time at Hope Denver and they’re interested in learning more about Jesus. Over pancakes, you answer their questions one by one, and even though they leave still feeling skeptical about church, you commit to taking him to breakfast every Tuesday for the rest of the month.
Day Four: Community Wednesday
Wednesday night is the night that your small group gathers around a table and shares a meal together. You’re joined by young adults, families, and two of the Hope Denver elders. You’ve been gathering together for nearly a year, and many new people have joined along the way. When you were in the hospital earlier in the year, members of your small group visited to provide prayer and meals. When another group member adopted a child, it was the community that assisted in the fundraising efforts. This community is where you belong and grow in your discipleship to Jesus.
Day Five: Tough Thursday
Today was just a rough day. You and your husband had an argument in the morning. You arrive late to work, and have a series of difficult meetings before picking up the kids from school to learn that one of them is performing poorly in science class. You pick up your phone after dinner with a missed call from your small group leader. They left a voicemail with an encouraging message and prayer which is just what you needed to hear today.
Day Six: Friday
Every so often, the Hope Denver small groups gather together to serve the community. Friday evening, the small groups gather together at DU to help freshman students move into their dorms for the semester. This experience sparks many conversations about Hope Denver, and continues to foster a strong relationship with the community of young people. A few students you speak with are already planning on attending the Sunday morning gathering.
Day Seven: Sabbath.
Saturday you have set aside for rest and fun. Your family is heading up to the mountains for a hike with another family from Hope Denver. Everyone is excited to attend the Hope Denver service the following morning, and you continue to feel like you are a part of the story that Jesus is writing in this community.