A Goodbye Letter to The Well from The Willis'
When our family moved to the Washington, DC area in 2004, we were excited to be able to bring the gospel message to people that had been on our hearts for many years. Within months of arriving in DC, Michael was working for a senior Member of Congress and our family quickly became immersed in the hill culture. It provided us numerous opportunities to be in the day to day lives of a group of people that rarely experience or see the love and grace that is found in Christ. Our excitement for this tremendous opportunity eventually waned a bit as we found it difficult to find other believers who we could share the details of our life from a gospel centered perspective. As we often say, it felt like we were on an island.
We did find a church we loved. Unfortunately, it was 10 miles north of the City where we worked. This meant that we were relegated to attending Sunday services. To be honest, at that point in our life, we didn’t see the value of community in our lives (though we were feeling the absence of it) and so we thought the Christian life was supposed to be a battle Monday through Friday with a respite on Sunday during the worship service.
Finally, in 2013 we found The Well. Since then, we have had the opportunity to share meals, laughter, tears, success, and heartbreak with more people than we can count. We have felt loved and supported by our communities and by the Elders and their families that we have had the honor of leading alongside. You all have been a blessing to our family and have taught us the importance of being connected with a community of believers beyond a Sunday morning worship service.
One of the lessons we have learned is that it is not only beneficial, but it is necessary for our effectiveness and the health of our souls that there be no separation in our professional, home, and church lives. Over the past year God has been revealing to us that our family is often torn between two worlds that rarely overlap. The world that consists of our friends and neighbors in the suburbs and the people who we work with daily and who the Spirit regularly puts on our heart to care for and love right where they are in their spiritual journey. We believe that God has still called our family to bring the Gospel to the people on capital hill and that it is very difficult to do that if we are not in community with them and other believers.
Over the past several years, God has been answering the prayers of His people and has been flooding DC with church plants that are passionate about bringing the Gospel to those working in halls of Congress. It is with great anticipation and gratefulness that our family leaves The Well to join other believers in Washington in this effort. Our family is eternally grateful to you for the lessons you have taught us about the importance of community and the blessings that you all have been to us in more ways than words can describe. We will carry the work that was begun in us here at The Well with us as we charge the next hill. We love you and we thank you!