Why Lisbon?

The short answer; because God called us there. But there is a bit more to it.


As we have shared our call to Lisbon with others, people have asked if we are moving to Portugal or Florida. There are cities named Lisbon in both places. But when I say Lisbon, Iowa, most people ask where it is or what it's near. They've never heard of it before. But that is not to say that it won't be a place of significance or influence.

I have known of Lisbon, Iowa, all my life. Growing up in Wyoming, Lisbon was a long drive away to visit my mother's side of the family for a holiday.  A drive to Lisbon usually began early in the morning, included a rare stop at McDonald's for breakfast, lunch on the road, and lasted into the night. It was a trip of gifts at Christmas or of catching fireflies in the Summer.

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When I graduated high school, my whole family made a transition. We sold our house, packed a moving truck, and started eastward. We dropped my sister off in Lincoln, NE, drove on the Lisbon to unload my parents, and then drove into Chicago for me to start at Moody Bible Institute. The summer of my Freshman year, I "went home" to Lisbon. I worked at the local restaurant and worked for my Uncle, who was a handyman. I taught the Youth Sunday School class at First Federated Church.

In 1995, my Junior year at Moody, I came home for Thanksgiving and brought two friends. After a huge Thanksgiving dinner, we took a walk down "Main Stree." I was telling them about Lisbon. We began talking about the church and dreaming about how exciting it would be to be a part of a thriving church in town. We all graduated and moved on in life.

After Eryn and I got married, we would visit Lisbon often. Our kids loved going to grandma's and grandpa's house. While we were there, Eryn and I would talk about how we felt a spiritual heaviness in Lisbon. We would pray for the church there, for my family, and for the light of the gospel to come. At times I would think a pray about what our roles were supposed to be. When I became a Pastor, another unexpected twist, I thought and prayed about it even more. Each time God made it clear it was not time. But in April 2021, God made it clear, now was the time. Since then, God has continued to confirm and lead in many ways. Through various conversations, God is making it clear that there is a spiritual opportunity. There is a season of openness to the gospel right now.

Lisbon is an agricultural community. We are going to Lisbon because the fields are ripe unto harvest, and the Lord of the harvest is sending workers into the field. We are excited to be a part of what God is doing. Would you prayerfully consider supporting us as we go and start Uncommon Church?