ADAM / A few weeks ago, I had the chance to sit down and talk with Bennett. He and his wife, Lyndsay, recently moved to Atlanta from Fort Wayne, Indiana, and have been an integral part of what NP / NIGHTS has been creating. Over coffee, he shared part of his story and why he and his wife want to be part of what is happening through NP / NIGHTS.
BENNETT / "My dad’s a pastor, so I was raised in church. I’ve always been around it. My wife and I actually just moved here a couple of months ago, so this is the first time I’ve ever really had to seek Christian community. I even went to a Christian college. But after we left college, my wife and I lived in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and we really struggled. It was one of those things. We really didn’t know how to connect. It was just one of those things where you need people who are willing to connect to you, but you also need to be willing to be a part of community. Community only works if it’s a two-way street. Connecting in community isn’t hard; you just have to be open to it. If you want it, you need to look for it—and once you look for it, it seems to find you."
ADAM / Since coming to Atlanta, he and his wife have found and immersed themselves in Christian community.
BENNETT / “Everyone I’ve met has been so real. I feel like everyone I talk to is genuine. Even though we’re still in the process of getting connected, it’s amazing. I’ve never been in a place where first encounters have moved into friendships so quickly. It’s really cool to be part of something like that."
ADAM / When I asked him what excited him about NP / NIGHTS being a place to invite his unchurched friends, he answered like this:
BENNETT / “It’s exciting to start with a blank page. People sometimes have a stigma about church, even if they’ve never been. They’ve heard that it’s like this or that. There are a couple of songs. There’s a sermon about something that may or may not be real. Then they dismiss you and that’s it. You go about your week and you maybe show up the next week. It seems like church is just part of a routine that people do. But when you’re creating something new, you really have a chance to meet people where they are . . . a chance to have a clean slate and show them that church is different than they expected. Anytime you get to genuinely create something new, how can you not love that? I feel like the people we’re around and the people who would want to come to something like this are the kind of people who are genuinely seeking to be part of community. And who doesn’t want to be part of something like that? I know I'm really excited to be part of it. This whole thing kind of got dropped in our laps, and we’re thinking, ‘What more could we ask for?’"
NP / NIGHTS next event is Thursday, September 24.