July 21, 2021
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The longer I live, the more I crave the favor of God.
The greatest moments in life are the moments when God intervenes on our behalf and blesses us way beyond what we expect or deserve. These are humble reminders of His sovereignty. And these favor moments can become our favor-ite memories.
One of these moments happened for me on August 12, 2001—and I’ll never forget it.
National Community Church was a fledgling church for five years. Like plowing rock-hard soil, there was nothing easy about planting a church in Washington, DC. It took us five years to grow from our core group of 19 to 250 people.
Then it was almost like the Lord declared, “Now is the time of God’s favor.”
A religion reporter from The Washington Post asked us for an interview because she was intrigued by our church demographics. She proceeded to write an article about how we were reaching emerging generations, and she told me it would appear in the religion section of the Post.
I picked up a two-inch-thick Sunday edition on my way into Union Station the morning of its publication and quickly flipped to the religion section. I was disappointed when I didn’t find the article. I figured it didn’t make the editorial cut, so I put the newspaper back onto the stand because I wasn’t going to buy it if we weren’t in it.
And that’s when I discovered that the article about us was on the front page!
That was the day God put National Community Church on the map. It had taken five years to grow to 250 people, but we doubled in size over the next year. It was as though God had opened the floodgates of favor, and hundreds of readers visited National Community Church as a result of that one article.
And the beautiful thing about it was that we couldn’t take credit for it.
It was nothing more, or maybe I should say nothing less, than the favor of God. It was God’s time. It was God’s favor. It was God’s word. And God was watching over it.
You have to trust the favor of God to do for you what you cannot do for yourself.
Mark Batterson serves as lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, DC. NCC also owns and operates Ebenezers Coffeehouse, The Miracle Theatre, and the DC Dream Center. Mark holds a doctor of ministry degree from Regent University and is the New York Times bestselling author of 17 books, including The Circle Maker, Chase the Lion, and Whisper. Mark and his wife, Lora, have three children and live on Capitol Hill.