When Sarah and Vince Inatomi were looking for a house in 2017, they were passionate about making it into a loving home that is welcoming and encouraging. They landed about five minutes away from the Legacy Campus and loved the diversity in the area. Vince and Sarah prayed over their new house and asked God to make it a blessing to their community.

Food Brings Connection

“When we first moved to this neighborhood, we started making gift bags for the neighborhood. Inside the gift bags were Christmas cookies and candies. This gift bag process planted a relationship with the community that grew into community cookouts and community Christmas parties we hosted in our house,” said Vince and Sarah.

Each time they did a cookout for the community, more and more people attended. Now they’re considering doing cookouts at the community park because they can’t fit everyone in their house. Their last cookout was their community Christmas party in 2019. They planned to do an Easter one, but unfortunately Covid-19 got in the way. Now they are working a way to continue to open their house to the community through this situation.

Cookouts opened the neighborhood purposefully and helped other people get to know each other. Many of their neighbors come from multiple cultures and countries, and some were born and raised Texas. The cookouts have also brought different foods from different cultures to the table for everyone to try and has opened up conversations about the areas people grew up in.

“Having a multicultural community helps bring awareness to diversity which we absolutely love learning and engaging through either food, community walks, or just spending quality time,” said Vince and Sarah.

Growing Stronger

Vince also grew the community together by starting morning workouts every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 6 AM. Vince and his Lifegroup leader have been doing these workouts for almost a year. They always close out the morning by talking about life and praying for each other. Vince said the morning workouts have been a blessing to him and the community.

“We are a judgement-free zone and just want to grow stronger physically and psychologically knowing that we are all imperfect people struggling to do better, day by day.”

Make an Impact

One of the families in the neighborhood was a single Muslim mom with three kids. She was a refugee from a different country and stayed inside the house most of the time. Sarah made it her goal to build a relationship with her. She built a bond with the single mom and she began to trust Sarah and Vince and would ask for help on certain tasks around the house she couldn’t do. Unfortunately, she got sick in December 2019. They visited her multiple times at the hospital and brought food that was within her cultural diet since the hospital had a limited menu. The neighbor passed away from Covid-19 in April. To this day, Sarah and Vince are still in touch with her extended family that is currently taking care of the kids.

How to Get Involved

“We hope we can pass on this vision of a loving community to others and it will eventually spread like a wildfire into this area through the people that we impacted,” said Vince, “I would encourage others to start by getting to know your neighbors by making gift bags with words of encouragement during this time.”

This is the perfect time to reach out to the community to share hope and encouragement to others. We need to have the perspective that God wants us to make an impact in our lives and the community that He has placed us in.

Vince said, “A mission that I have personally lived by is the “See, Feel, Do” perspective.”

  • See – We need to see what God sees in people.
  • Feel – We need to feel what God feels for His people.
  • Do – We need to do what God wants for His people.”

When we see and feel what God sees and feels for His people, then we can’t help but do what God wants to do for His people no matter who they are.

To become a neighborhood lead and make an impact in your neighborhood, visit https://www.chaseoaks.org/become-neighborhood-lead/