Introducing…The Largest Church You’ve Never Heard OfBookmark this
With hundreds of thousands of house churches across 65 countries, countless people reached and coming to Christ, and not a single “staff leader with a title,” No Place Left is one of the largest, fastest growing, non-traditional church network in the world. No Place Left is not an organization, but “a movement of movements aimed at getting to no place left where Christ is not made known in our generation. ”The concept of No Place Left, which first started circulating the globe six years ago, is to reach lost and unreached people through the Gospel, train and produce disciples, plant house churches, and reproduce the model again and again.
“It is hard to express the excitement, freedom and peace Christ can bring. In sharing with others, we might trip over our words, leave important information out or worse yet drive someone further away from Jesus. No Place Left offers a very clear and easy way to share the Good News that is inviting and easy to follow. The training they offer is transferable and easy to replicate. The multiplication they desire happens naturally. It is an honor for us to support their efforts.”
Proprietor Third Coast Kitchen
Leaders from churches and ministries are laying down their titles to join together to see the Great Commission of Christ fulfilled and the Kingdom of God expanded in our city. The group leading the charge in San Antonio includes John Williams, Ben Hanna, and Nathan Clark, along with partnering ministries, churches, and other individuals. “Of the total people living here, 1.7 million are lost and don’t know Christ,” said John. “What is it going to take and what would it look like if the 2.5 million people in the greater San Antonio area heard the Gospel?”
Luke 10:2 – He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
“San Antonio is a strategic location, with hundreds of thousands of people coming to the area for college, military assignments, work opportunities, and through immigration,” said Ben. “God tells us to go to the nations, but he also brings the nations to us.”
The group follows a similar mission to that of the ministry E3 Partners. The vision is to “Equip God’s people, Evangelize God’s Gospel, and Establish healthy, multiplying, and transformative churches everywhere.” The group defines “house church” as a church that can occur anywhere. “We are the church. A house church can mean meeting in a house, on a front porch, under a tree in Uganda, or at a Starbucks,” said Nathan. “If we’re working toward all of the nine basic functions of a church outlined in Acts 2, including praise and worship, prayer, communion, and so on, we can identify ourselves as a church.” The group estimates it has helped establish more than 100 house churches in San Antonio to date.
However, it is important to note that the group is not anti-church. “We are pro-church, and the gathering of the Body of Christ, and are just moving outside of the traditional ways of meeting,” said John. “We are excited for what churches are doing and want to help pastors and churches make more disciples and plant more churches.”
The disciple-making training, which varies across the international network, uses fluid, streamlined tools meant to cross denominations, and be simple, biblical, and reproducible. The training is so easy to understand that even a child could train it, and they do! Their youngest “trainer,” Ransom, is only 8-years old and evangelizes with his family.
Matthew 28:19 (NIV) The Great Commission: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
“We are the church. A house church can mean meeting in a house, on a front porch, under a tree in Uganda, or at a Starbucks,” said Nathan.
"We connect people who need Christ and churches who desire training in Him."
Nathan and fellow No Place Left leader, John “Sonny” Jordan share stories of transformation made possible through the movement. Nathan, a chef by trade, was going through a renewing of faith with his family when a friend invited him to a house church. Before he knew it, he was assisting in pieces of training, starting a house church in his apartment complex, baptizing individuals including his family, and being asked by John to join E3 Partners as a staff member. Nathan is considered a key leader in San Antonio and has worked with more than seven groups and twelve house churches locally since joining the movement five years ago.
Sonny grew up in a strong Christian household but got involved in dealing drugs, which led to several prison terms. While in prison, Sonny gave his heart to Jesus and began his mission to bring others to Christ, too. Within the five years he has been part of the San Antonio team, he has worked with two housing projects and two low-income homes. He currently pastors two churches and is working on a third.
Both men possess a real heart for evangelism and have been called to be full-time missionaries. They are seeking funding support from the community to continue their work. “The biggest challenge is evaporation, or when a group or church just fizzles out,” said Nathan. “We need constant fuel, which only comes from Him, and we want to make sure our disciples are abiding consistently and with reasonable depth, and we’re spending time with our disciples to help them do that.”
Local Mission Trip Efforts
The local movement gained significant traction in March when the group connected two local churches to facilitate a local mission trip. “We went deep in prayer walking, asking God to help prepare us and the soil for whatever he would have us do,” said Ben. Shortly after, CrossBridge Community Church, a Northside church contacted the group seeking a local mission opportunity.
The San Antonio No Place Left group trained participants, and over Spring Break, connected CrossBridge Community Church with a Westside church (Life Church) to visit mobile home parks, apartment complexes, and neighborhoods. More than 40 people came to Christ, and 16 were baptized, 9 of which were children. “We’re called in so many places to have unity as the Body of Christ, and these churches from the Northside and Westside were working together.
It was a big ‘K’ Kingdom outreach,” said Ben. The local mission trip ignited a long-term commitment between the churches and the No Place Left team to carry out ongoing outreach locally and internationally.
Goals for the Future
One of the group’s goals is as simple as getting every Christian to feel confident and competent in sharing their faith. “The churches we train become training churches, and within everything they do, they’re equipped, and know with confidence how to share their faith, disciple someone, and form a church if God opens that door for them,” said Ben. “I hope to see nine training churches launched by 2019, and for those to be multiplied to 20 by 2020.”
Goals are not based on financial funding either. “This is God-generated,” said John. “Everything we do: praying, sharing our story and the Gospel, and creating disciples, can be done without finances. This movement will continue to grow even if we don’t have money because we have a God that will do that.”
“At Third Coast Kitchen, we love people and our community. No Place Left offers training for us as business owners that enables us to use our influence in an attracting and welcoming way with both employees, customers and even our neighbors. The message of Jesus is really simple. Love God with all of your heart and love your neighbor. NPL’s tools and message just fits with who we are as a company with love as the central message.”
Proprietor Third Coast Kitchen
The number of people and house churches involved in the movement is hard to quantify, as it’s continually changing and there is no official “hub” collecting data. When discussing the nebulous nature of the movement, Ben compares No Place Left to Airbnb and Uber, “The largest real estate company in the world doesn’t own property, and the largest transportation company doesn’t own a vehicle. They provide a platform to connect people who need something with those who have it. We connect people who need Christ and churches who desire training in Him.” It really is just that simple… and that profound!
Be A Light.
Visit. Attend a No Place Left training and become a disciple and disciple-maker. Contact Nathan at Nathan.firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a one-on-one or group training. “We want to give the Kingdom away,” said Nathan. “We want to raise a legion of people that want to share the amazing things God has done in their lives with people who don’t know Him and have Him change their lives too.” Give. Help provide consistent and recurring funding to Nathan and Sonny, so they can continue spreading Christ’s Gospel full-time as local missionaries. Partner financially with Nathan at www.purecharity.com/nathanclark-e3partners.Partner financially with Sonny at transformationsa.com. Become a family on mission together. Host a prayer walk and pray on the issues specific to areas in need, and that God may have His will done. Learn. Learn more about the No Place Left movement by visiting www.noplaceleft.net, the “No Place Left San Antonio” Facebook page, or by contacting Nathan at Nathan.email@example.com.
Learn more about the No Place Left movement
by visiting www.noplaceleft.net,
the “No Place Left San Antonio” Facebook page, or by contacting Ben Hanna:
or John Williams John Williams
We want to impact our world as Christ did and that means sitting at the table with all people. We minister to our employees, customers and neighbors in ways that are meaningful to them personally. For this reason, we started Third Coast Charities where our staff volunteer hours towards our community events to enrich the lives of the people around us. We invite you to visit one of our restaurants soon.
Great information. Will be researching this further.
Great article!!! Extremely well written.
Refreshing story of the beauty of the church in unity as a multi-faceted display of God’s grace and wisdom.