15 | Austin Uphoff: Working for Christ Led to Deeper Community


My wife, Kayla, and I moved to Northern Virginia after graduating Bible college to take over my mother-in-law's business so that she could retire. However, we moved away from all our friends, and like so many people in this area, we soon became isolated and lonely. We had been looking for a church that focused on Biblical teaching and its application for everyday living, and a church family where we could find community and serve in ministry.

After visiting a few different churches, we found Harvest. After a month, we started to understand where the church had opportunities and how we could work for Christ to serve the congregation. We started volunteering for the set-up team early Sunday mornings — because anyone who can move things can help out there! We had a lot of fun, started meeting new people, and quickly made friends.

A few Sundays later, Pastor Jeff mentioned that they were looking for volunteers to serve on the production team and the creative team. All I could do was laugh because I had been doing those things for my college the past few years. God had been equipping me, and now He’s enabled me to use those gifts here.

The way I’ve been able to use my natural giftings has allowed me to feel even more connected to a new community. When we’re open to letting Him use us, we experience His goodness in ways we might never have imagined.

When we first moved here, we weren’t part of a meaningful community, but through God’s leading, we’re now surrounded by and committed to our church family here at Harvest Fairfax!