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LITTLE WHITE CHURCH

img_1987.jpgIt is hard to describe the Little White Church out on the LH7 Ranch in the prairie of Katy, Texas.  It is a love story too big to tell in one short article.  The story is as big as the Texas sky that we sit under and starts well before our occupation.  Some say, “This is God’s Country”.  I call the ranch where the church sits, “Glory-Land”.

I first saw Little White Church beyond the pond and past the fir trees on a drive with my husband.  The moment I saw it, I knew I was to have a connection with that church.  As with all preachers, when we see an empty church building, we have one thought, “Let’s have a meeting”.  For Don it was not love at first sight.  He did not have the time to search out the hidden path to the church behind the trees.  He was more interested in going to Cracker Barrel.  However, now he loves the church as much as I do.

As a few days passed, the Holy Spirit kept dealing with me about that church.  I took a drive and tried to find out how to access the ranch road.  The first attempts were to no avail.  However, I kept trying until one day I drove up to the gate of the ranch.  On either side of the cattle gate were two huge Cypress trees.  There the church set in the middle of a pasture in a 1940’s village setting of an old country store, two log cabins, a ranch house, barns, longhorns, some donkeys and horses
.  The pasture was strewn with cow and donkey patties.

I fell in love as I walked toward the weather worn, shabby, unkempt structure. The screen door was hanging loose.  There were more shingles missing than were on the roof.  Some of the window panes were broken.    When I stepped on the porch, the Holy Spirit spoke to me.  I opened the door.  I knew I was to move into the church. Tears came to my eyes.   I knew the Lord had connected  this woman preacher with a new purpose which would connect to destiny.

 The interior had once been lovingly crafted by fine craftsmen.  However, the pews were split and the cushions torn.  The sheetrock was rent in several places. The church had been recently moved to the ranch from one-half mile down the road.

A cowboy came up and asked us if he could help me.  I told him, “I would like to rent this church for some meetings.”  I handed him my card and went on my way.  A couple of months passed and the owner, Maudeen Martha Marks,  called me.  I told her about the ministry and my desire to rent the church.  At that time, services were to be held once a month.

Initially, there was no indoor plumbing for the restroom.  I rented a port-a-potty.  I cleaned the church on the inside. We started having services once a month.  Then soon it was every Sunday afternoon.  I had a nice crowd coming at the Sunday afternoon services.   But I knew if I went to Sunday morning, the crowd would leave. Then I would know who the Lord had called to start the church.  We started on the coldest day Texas had had in years.  The church did not have a heater.  Actually there was a heater, but it was butane and there was not a tank or plumbing for the butane.   We got through that winter without a central heater.

All of the naysayers said, “No one will come out here in this pasture.  This is Houston, Texas.  People are fancy.”  The little Fisher home next to the church was to be our youth building.  It was truly a wreck.  No one believed we would ever get it restored.  Men looked at me and said, “Forget it, you will never be able to use this facility for children.”

Those whom the Lord sent fell in love with Jesus and He blessed us with his presence through awesome worship and word.  Through the years, we continue to have blessed fellowship meals and meetings.  The presence of the Lord under an open Heaven of Glory continues to be stronger and stronger as the weeks go by.

Little by little we acquired the equipment we needed, got the heater working, and the restroom in operation.  The congregation began to donate for a new roof, paint the church inside and out, restore the Fisher home, install a new kitchen floor,  and a new stove was given to us. We repaired and recovered the cusioned pews.  We created landscaping, and more.   It was, and is a labor of love for the whole church.  It seems the Lord sends in the right person to do the restoration. The provision was made for all the repairs completed to date.   We have no indebtedness.

The journey has been one of great adventure, great Glory and great Love.  It has truly been a labor of love.  There are those who would say, “Why have you put so much money and labor into something you don’t own?”  I am always shocked at that statement.  You see the Lord owns all the cattle on a thousand hills and the church building belongs to Him and His Kingdom.  He just allows us to use it for His Glory.  It has not been any trouble.  As Ministers of the Gospel, we must be in love with Jesus Christ and be in love with the ministry he allows us to steward. 

  Many generations have worshiped in this Little White Church on the Prairie.  The church is full of angels from the years of prayer, Christian service and praise.  We are so honored of the Lord to be partakers of this blessing of being able to worship Him at Little White Church.   I mentioned to Atha Dimon, who grew up in the church and is a daughter of the LH7,  that I get one of two reactions from people who visit the church:   Love and delight,  or offense at how humble the structure is.  Atha said to me, “It has always been that way.”  I cannot mention here all of the names of the people who have made up the extended church family of Little White Church through the years.  However, once you have been there three times, you are family and we will always welcome you as part of the Little White Church family.
 
The stories of cowboys, ranchers, coyotes, wild hogs, deer, egrets, and wolves,  not to mention the longhorns worshiping with us as we sing,  are too many to tell in one short story.  Come visit us and be part of the ongoing adventure and excitement of what the Lord is doing at Little White Church.

Let me be clear that though this location has been great fun and is an awesome experience,  the reason for the building and the existence of the church is the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ with the blessed saints who make up the congregation of Eastgate Ministries, Inc.    We hold up His name and glorify Him.  To Him Be the Glory forever and ever.

Amen

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries, Inc.

 A/k/a Little White Church

 

After 15 years at Little White Church, In February 2014, we moved to Willow Fork Country Club, 21055 Westhemer Parkway, Katy, TX. 77450.

It has been a narrow path and for a season we hung our harps on the Willows as we processed our grief.  However, we have come to a large place in the realm of the Spirit.  My testimony of this journey is Psalm 18:19: "They prevented me in the day of my calamity; but the Lord was my stay.  He brought me forth also into a large place; He delivered me because He delighted in me."

The story is being written as we walk forward ---one day I will tell the whole story.

Carolyn Sissom 

 
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