27th June 2019
King’s is a multi-site church meeting in four locations in south east London. Over the next few weeks we will be posting a series of guest blogs with an update on how things have been going at each site. This week we hear from Charles Kimbangi at the Beckenham site.
“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit – fruit that will last.”
Jesus spoke these words to His disciples on the night before He died. They were words of comfort as well as commissioning. Jesus had chosen them and appointed them to go and bear fruit. The disciples – and us – are the fruit of Jesus’ work on the cross and are sent to be His fruit-bearers.
As I have reflected recently, these words have also been a source of comfort to me. I am Jesus’ fruit. He lived, died and rose again for me and I am now His and He is mine. But He has also given me, and you, a task. A task to go and bear fruit – everlasting fruit.
How do we bear fruit? In the context of John 15, it is to love people and see people also come to faith in Jesus. Loving people and seeing lost people come to faith in Christ is at the heartbeat of who we are and what we do at King’s.
The Beckenham site was launched as a result of the Catford site bearing much fruit. In October 2018, 140 people from Catford were sent to launch Beckenham and thus far, by God’s grace, we have seen fruit. The Catford site continues to expand and grow, now meeting across three services, and the Beckenham site now regularly gathers 170 people on a Sunday.
Over the past nine months, there have been some amazing high moments at Beckenham. For example, 270 people attended our first Carol Service and on Easter Sunday we saw nine people respond to the Gospel by either making a first-time commitment or a recommitment to follow Jesus – the first fruits that we have seen since launching the site.
I am also delighted that we’ve been able to run two CAP money courses and an Alpha course in order to serve and reach people. We have also developed good relationships with local churches, organisations and Harris Academy, the school where we meet on Sundays.
Whilst there have been some amazing moments, there have also been some challenges. We’ve had to adjust to meeting in a hired venue, meaning that we set up and pack down every Sunday (that’s a lot of equipment being shifted around!) and we don’t have a physical space to meet regularly during the week. However, I’ve always said the church of God is not a building but a people; and the people that God has sent to Beckenham and those who have joined us since the launch, are a faithful, servant-hearted bunch who love Jesus and have opened their homes to show hospitality to others.
80% of the site serve in some capacity on a Sunday and are passionate about building God’s Kingdom and bearing much fruit. It has been a fantastic start to the Beckenham site, but the challenge now is to keep going; keep being faithful and keep bearing fruit that will last!
Posted by Charles Kimbangi
Steve Tibbert leads King’s Church London, with sites in Catford, Downham and Lee. Over the past fifteen years the church has seen continued growth, both in size and diversity. Steve is also involved in Newfrontiers and regularly coaches other lead elders. His book, Good to Grow, was published in July 2011. He is married to Deb, and they have three sons.