HELPING YOU LEAD BETTER THAN EVER!
In 1998 Keith Spurgin, Susan Spurgin, and Doug Fike sat under a palm tree in Thailand and scratched out a plan for a new kind of church that would not only reach people who felt far from God but would also raise up leaders who would influence the world.
New Hope was launched with a group of sturdy but mostly untested leaders in January of 1999. We started in the Wylie Opry (a country music hall with wood chairs, the smell of popcorn, a Chuck E. Cheese stage, and a restroom behind the stage. That last part is important because during the message Keith would have to move his podium and allow the would-be tinkler to slip by while he was still teaching. Amazingly people kept coming and invited their friends. Over the next few years people’s lives were changed and the church grew rapidly. During that time prophetic words were given about an ‘apostolic church’. No one was quite sure what that meant in those early days but by 2005 it was becoming apparent that two unusual things were happening:
- People from all walks of life were being sent out to serve in the marketplace, non-profits, and missions
- Leaders from around the world were starting to ask Keith for input, advice, relational connection, and help on their individual and organizational journeys
Some of those early leaders are still a key part of the GRG network, including Jeremy & Jen Price and Alin & Gabi Ciorogar.
Through those early years New Hope organizationally and financially carried this work. The Elder Team was abundantly generous with administrative help, financial investment, and covering travel expenses so that Keith could do the work he was being called to. Doug Fike gave perspective that helped this mentality of an apostolic generous church and being Kingdom-minded to continue. This allowed things to incubate, develop, and grow without having to worry about many of the typical startup issues.
Along the way, there were moments of consternation and confusion. The New Hope Elder Team has local leadership responsibility but was being asked to carry things trans-locally. Some were on board and some were not sure how all this tied together or if it should tie together. There were some tense moments and heavy conversations at times.
By 2008, the Elder Team at New Hope recognized that there was a need for a separate organization to help supplement this work. Later that year, The Growth Resourcing Group (GRG) was formed and established as an IRS approved non-profit in the United States.
The first GRG Weekend was held in Lindale, Texas in 2009 with about 50 people. We really had no idea what we were doing but we had a great time. That first meeting was primarily people sharing their journey with a few teachings sprinkled in and some really bad food with lots of gravy! Leaders discovered they weren’t alone on the journey, that Jesus was doing things in all kinds of places and in unique ways that they could learn from. Since then we’ve kept a strong focus on the relational interaction while adding more quality input to the weekend.
As of 2017, there are ten anchor organizations in the GRG network:
Cassia is located in East Asia – led by Pete and Heather
Catala is located in East Asia – led by SJ Turner
Cowboys with a Mission in Cody, Wyoming – led by Kevin and Sherri Cooley
ERC Church in Mbonswani, South Africa – led by Sthembiso and Thule Nkambule
New Life in Wellman, Iowa – led by Aaron and Melissa Fleming
Rain Edge International in Nakuru, Kenya – led by Sammy and Millie Nawali
Talent Construction in Wylie, TX – led by Brian and Brenda Warrick
Ten Thousand Homes in South Africa – led by Jeremy and Jen Price
The Bridge Connection in Wylie, Texas – led by Russell and Ginger Shocklee
YWAM Cluj in Cluj-Napoca, Romania – led by Alin and Gabi Ciorogar
The GRG Network is part of a family of cluster networks under the GDI (Growth Dynamics International) umbrella. GDI is led by Doug Fike. Sister organizations in the GDI family include Connect, The Dandelion Seed Company, and New Hope.
As the journey continues our hope is to see more apostolic leaders developed and apostolic organizations making a Kingdom difference in people’s lives around the world. As leaders continue to be invested in, developed, and released GRG will have it’s own clusters led by apostolic leaders from within the broader network.