The Grove

The Grove

Our time in Miami is passing quickly and after reaching our halfway mark, we have seen the Lord do many things. Our focus area for the summer is a community called Coconut Grove (known as “the Grove” to the locals), which is on the edge of the City of Miami. We have familiarized ourselves with the streets, grasped the culture of daily life, and we’ve been able to engage with many of the residents and influential people within the Grove. At first, the thought of creating a church planting prospectus for a place we knew nothing about seemed overwhelming and out of our comfort zone; but as we began the process of making the prospectus we have been overwhelmed by the goodness of God.


girls1Kelsie and Nathan talking to locals as we wait for the bus in the Grove.

As we have surveyed the Grove, we’ve found an area of deep brokenness in need of the Gospel. Coconut Grove is divided, presenting two distinct sides of the neighborhood. The east side of the Grove is full of vanity, materialism, and isolation. The west side of the Grove is full of darkness, pain, and despair. The only hope for the people of this lost city is a relationship with Jesus. At times, our journey seems vast but our team has been able to experience moments that clearly portray God’s faithfulness time and time again.

girls2

Dianna, Kelsie, and Emmy.

We have had many incredible opportunities to connect with the people in the Grove and have Gospel-centered conversations with them. Whether it be a chat with a small business owner, or a discussion of the community with a resident walking their dog, I am always filled with joy when I hear of what God is doing in the Grove and to see that He is allowing us to be a part of it. We were able to spend the 4th of July in a community park where we watched a hot dog eating contest, saw fireworks, and connected with several locals. Earlier this week we served Coral Gables Baptist Church by helping them paint and do other handiwork they needed. Each week we enjoy meeting with a different church planter in the area and learning how they have responded to their church plant calling. This weekly interaction has proven to be exponentially beneficial as we’ve the pressed through each stage of creating our prospectus. This coming week we will continue to form our prospectus and by God’s grace be able to love on the people of the Grove.

Prayer Requests: That the Lord would renew our energy and strength, we stay diligent over
our remaining time in Miami, and that God would bring forth fruit through our interactions here.