Have you ever been through a wilderness season in your life? A dry season where it felt like you may not make it to the other side? A season where you felt lost? We all have been there at one time or another, and for me, it was when I was 18 years old. I had spent most of my high school years searching for where I would fit in, trying to fill the void in my heart with things that ultimately would not satisfy me.
While I was lost, hurting, and searching for purpose, church became my oasis—the place where I found a refreshing community.
While I was lost, hurting, and searching for purpose, I met a beautiful girl named Brooke, who invited me to attend church with her family. That girl eventually became my wife, and that church became my oasis—the place where I found a refreshing community. The place where I found a renewed identity in Jesus. The place where I healed from my past and found direction for my future. The place where I finally found my purpose.
At 18, I first felt the call to plant a life-giving church. Just over a decade later, after serving in high-capacity youth ministry roles across the United States, God has finally said: “Go!” In August of 2023, my wife and I will launch Oasis City Church, a brand new church in Boise, Idaho. The reason is simple—Boise is full of pioneers, entrepreneurs, and dreamers. But so many of them are wandering through life, gifted with grit but lacking purpose and direction.
We know that with God’s guidance, we will build a church that can be an oasis for the wanderer. A place where they can find refreshing, hope, healing, and renewal for their spirit. A place where they can find purpose, passion, identity, and direction for the God-given gifts in their life. People trying to find their way need to know that Jesus is the Way. We want them to encounter God at weekend services, find authentic community in life groups, and discover God’s purpose in the knowledge of Him.
With God’s guidance, we will build a church that can be an oasis for the wanderer.
The call came in 2020. We have always been prayerful and aware of places we could plant someday. Amid the year dubbed “the great resignation,” we started to ask, “Where are all these people quitting their jobs moving to?” As we searched for the fastest-growing cities in the United States, Boise consistently ranked at the top of the list. We had never heard of Boise, but there was a draw, a divine flow when we spoke about, prayed about it, and thought about it.
As we truly began to seek the Lord about Boise, we started noticing the little “coincidences” you always hear church planters talk about. One thing after another confirmed that there was something about Idaho that we needed to explore. We took the hint and spent the summer of 2021 in Boise. We asked families what they do for fun, where to go, and what we needed to see. Then, we followed the list. We fell in love as we explored neighborhoods, the green belt, downtown Boise, and the foothills. We knew this was home.
I took our kids one day so my wife, Brooke, could go out on her own, find a coffee shop, and pray. The next day she did the same for me. We both felt God speak to us. During this prayer moment, God gave me the name “Oasis City Church.” Specifically, God called us to be part of what he is doing in the Treasure Valley.
Boise is booming. The city saw an 18.2% population jump from 2010 to 2018. According to Forbes, it was the fastest-growing city in the country between 2017 and 2018. In 2019, Boise was ranked as the best place to live for millennials. It has a growing tech scene, with Silicon Valley tech companies opening offices to escape skyrocketing costs in the Bay Area. According to Barna Research Group, Boise is ranked the 28th most unchurched city in the nation and the 24th most post-Christian city. There is a real need for life-giving churches in Boise.
Thousands of dry and thirsty souls are drawing water from empty wells. They are searching for refreshments in all the wrong places. Like the woman at the well in John chapter 4, they drink only to thirst again. Our goal is to be a well in the community. A gathering place and distribution center for the “living water” of Christ and an oasis for the wanderer where they can find hope, healing, refreshing, and renewal.
Our goal is to be a distribution center for the “living water” of Christ.
Our prayer for anyone reading that feels like God is asking you to plant a church, please do. We need you. Yes, it’s scary. Yes, it isn’t easy. But nothing will stretch your faith and grow your dependence on God like planting a church. When Jesus says “Come,” take that step of faith. And keep your eyes fixed on him, the author and finisher of our faith.
Landon Hairgrove has spent nearly a decade in ministry, building and leading high-capacity youth ministries for incredibly dynamic churches across the country. He is passionate about helping people connect to their purpose in every area of their lives and mentoring young leaders in life and ministry. He and his wife Brooke are the lead pastors of Oasis City Church which launches in August of 2023 in Boise, Idaho. They have three children: Arrow, Ezra, and Kaia.