The Faith Builder

I mentioned under author’s bio, I was chairman of our Relocation Committee for a reason. My faith began growing when we added 42,000 sq. ft. to our old church. It was in 1988 and we were discussing a $1.7 million expansion; to us that was huge. Our average attendance at the time was 770. We were financially meeting our obligations but not much more.

As our attendance starting growing we needed more room. We had a choice to either build in stages or all at once. I believed we could only afford to do it in stages. There was no way to pay for it if we did it all at once. It would require weekly giving to double to maintain the building and pay the interest. As chairman of the board I was totally against doing the whole project at once. However, against my advice the board agreed to do everything at once.

The project was completed in 1989. The impossible became possible. By the time the expansion was completed our weekly giving had doubled. I learned from this experience it is not what we think we can do, but it’s what God wants us to do. This is when I really started believing in Christ’s promise found in Matthew 17:20. If we have faith as small as a mustard seed we could move mountains and nothing would be impossible for us.

By 1991 our attendance had grown to 1740 weekly. We were land locked and could no longer handle the parking situation and it was not possible to purchase additional property around us. We believed God gave us the vision to try and secure at least 80 acres of property south of our present site in Henderson. When we told the congregation of our plans it was like they had a “Red Sea Experience”. We sent out 12 spies to get people’s reaction and ten came back with negative responses.

We tried three different times to purchase property and three times we were turned down. Finally we were able to obtain property that had been a gravel pit. We offered $37,500 per acre. Across the freeway land was selling for $110,000 per acre.

Once we purchased the property the City of Henderson stated they had to have 24 acres of our land to build a major league sports complex for spring training. This was where we had intended to place our sports area and have additional parking.

While we were negotiating with the city we were hauling dirt onto our property. Because of the huge amounts of earth that had been taken from the property we had to bring in enough dirt to raise the property 13 feet. This required approximately 700,000 cu. yds. It had to be hauled in, graded and packed. The costs were extensive.

The City had to have our 24 acres and it seemed we had no choice. By that time, the value of an acre was $66,800 per acre. We agreed to sell the property if they would build a sports complex park to the north of us. We needed a five lane street north through the park with a four lane street going north east of the park. They agreed to help us build two bridges across the Duck Creek Wash between us. They also would allow a 40 foot street south of us on the edge of their property. The cost of bringing in the dirt and getting it ready for our building was almost exactly what the City paid us. By the way! It has been twelve years and the City still has done nothing with our previous property. They really didn’t need it. No sports complex was built. We call it a “God Thing!” Ever since, my family and I look for “God Things” to happen in our lives and then we share with each other. God does not let us down with signs to build our faith.

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