"Partnership in the Gospel" - Meet Church Planter Matt Felton
October 26, 2017
In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:4-6
Hi. My name is Matt. I’m married to Natalie, and we have three very pretty little girls (Harper 5, Emersyn 3, & Iris 1). I grew up with three brothers - hardly sufficient training for raising princesses - but thankfully, God’s wisdom is wiser than ours! Our girls were all born in Oklahoma City, where I spent the last 6.5 years serving as an Associate Pastor (and where I adopted the OKC Thunder, though only very loosely). While pastoring in OKC, I worked closely alongside a guy named David Chung, from Los Angeles, who I grew to love and really respect. He’s now here with us, helping us to plant!
My move here represents a “return” of sorts – at least to the beloved East Coast. I’m a native North Carolinian, and like lots of kids raised in the Bible Belt, I grew up in a world filled with gospel truths – both at church and in the home. However, it wasn’t until college in Raleigh that God captured my own heart with the Good News, and chiefly through the ministry of the Word in a local church. For the first time, I encountered God’s majesty and His goodness. That radically changed my life, and set me on a course for ministry which has taken us from Raleigh, to D.C., to Oklahoma City, and now back to the Nation's Capital!
So, why church planting? I’ll give you three reasons why we’re endeavoring to plant a church:
#1 It’s tried and true, both biblically and historically.
The story of Acts is the story of Christians planting new churches, and the gospel spreading! Further, beyond the Bible, God has always saved people through church planting. It’s not a new fad, nor is it unproven. We shouldn’t be surprised that God works today as He worked in the Bible!
#2 Church planting scares us to death.
At the risk of sounding like a cliché – my wife and I have observed a pattern of God repeatedly both shaping and using us the most, during the seasons we felt the most “in over our heads,” and therefore the most dependent upon His grace! Church planting feels so far beyond our abilities. Do it, God!
#3 God has opened this door.
Out of all the different options we looked at over the last year or so, this was perhaps the most surprising to us – and there was a sweet pattern of this door opening a little further, as we sensed more and more excitement to walk through it. Now here we are.
We’re thrilled to be here in Washington, and here at McLean. Washington is a special place to us – reach people here, and you can reach the world! And please know, lastly, how personally grateful we are for the partnership of MBC. On many levels, we could not be here without you, and we praise God for your “partnership in the gospel” (Phil.1:5). We are eager to get to know you over the next year, and beyond.