Matthias' Lot Does Church Differently
Wednesday worship and Sunday home group meetings have grown this church and its ministries.
Matthias’ Lot Church is like most Christian churches in some ways. It proclaims and shares the gospel of Jesus, desires to make disciples of Christ, and explains its mission and ministry as “loving Him and loving His.”
Matthias’ Lot is not like most churches in many ways, intentionally.
Matthias’ Lot Church offers Wednesday evening worship services. On Sundays, instead of “going to church,” the LOT families meet. LOT stands for Living Onward Together. There are 11 LOT families in Matthias’ Lot Church who meet on Sundays at various times throughout the day.
They hold Sunday small group get-togethers for fellowship, study, prayer, connection and accountability. A midweek evening service is not a new idea for a church, but making it the corporate worship for the week is a new and bold concept.
Worship on Wednesday, small groups on Sunday. The Christian message is proclaimed in a different structure of church.
Marc Sikma is the pastor of Matthias’ Lot. He and his friend, Jason Zellmer, planted the church in 2005. Zellmer has gone on to plant a second church, Peine Ridge Church in Wentzville, which opened to the public in March 2010.
Since 2009, Matthias’ Lot has partnered with another church to share space. Sikma made it clear that the church is shaped and organized so that it is not in competition with other churches and so that it will never have to own its own building.
The church has moved to four different locations, Sikma said. The people are attached to each other and Christ more than any place or space he said. It’s a group that understands change and flexibility about surroundings, people, worship style and music. The instruments and singers may vary week to week, but the church stays rooted in its solidly Biblical, Christian message.
In April 2011, Matthias’ Lot began worshipping at Main Street Chapel on North Main Street in St. Charles. I asked about the decision to provide a second worship service on Wednesday evenings and what impact that may have had on the ministry. The sanctuary at the previous location was large enough to seat all worshippers at one service.
“It was a step of faith,” Sikma said. “What we have seen since April is growth in the second service that was beyond expectations.”
As for fellowship, Sikma told me that instead of the connection among people suffering because of two worship services, he believes the fellowship has increased because people stay between services and talk with one another.
This is a church with focus. It is a young church in length of time it has been around, and a younger church in terms of member age groups, attendees and leadership. They have clarity of purpose. It is a group very much about community and about the community it is in.
We Love St. Charles is a separate, nonprofit organization that was birthed out of the church. Free Coats for Kids is the current program of We Love St. Charles. Sikma said that volunteers will take the coats to the homes of those who requested coats for their children.
When he and Zellmer planted Matthias’ Lot six years ago, Sikma told me that the Wednesday night worship model was something God called them as a church plant to do. Despite the criticisms and risks, he and Zellmer pursued that counter-cultural, yet God-guided direction.
Sikma expressed his desire to "live counter-culturally, not legalistically," and to break from the idea that busy means holy and the busier you are, the holier you are.
As the lead pastor, Sikma is earnest. He loves and lives for and in Jesus. He wants to convey that message in word and in a way of living and serving. He and those around him want to motivate and equip others to do the same. Just not in the same way or at the same time as others do.
Matthias’ Lot Church: The same, but different.