Welcome to California.
Then we saw a sign on the corner of Newhall Ranch and Grandview that said, “Future Home of Real Life Church.” There was a website on the sign, so the Golfer thought we should check it out and give it a try.
With the building yet to be constructed, the church was currently meeting in a movie theater. We didn’t care. We loved everything about it. We loved the music, we loved the pastor, we loved how much the church gave back to the community and encouraged the congregation to do the same. And best of all, our boys loved it. We had found our new church home.
Yesterday, we had our first dedication of the new land for the church. During the service, we were given rocks to write on. The rocks were to be dropped into the hole where the baptistery will be poured. (At our cool church, the baptistery will be outside–only in southern California.)
On the rock we were to write something–a praise, a thank you, a prayer. These rocks would form and altar–an altar that was going to be filled with cement and made into a permanent fixture of the church. A fixture where people will enter a personal relationship and commit their life to Christ.
How cool is that?
So after lunch at the new Bristol Farms (my new favorite place in town) we walked over to where they’re building the new church–the place where we very first saw the sign–and after a short speech and a prayer, the congregation walked down towards the baptistery hole.
The Golfer and I stood with the boys right on the edge of the hole. I couldn’t help but be moved by the moment. God is beyond cool and amazing. He brought us here to California when everyone thought it was a crazy (i.e. stupid) idea. But we had faith. We knew that we were following God’s will for our lives and as stupid (i.e. crazy) as it seemed, we did it anyway.
“Trust me,” He told us. And we said, “Absolutely!” Because when God talks, we listen.
And you know what? He has blessed us like crazy in the last year and a half, giving us all that we could want or hope for. He brought us through a time when all we could do was look at each other and say, “what the heck are we doing?” to now being at a point where things are pretty close to perfect in our little corner of the world and all we can do is praise Him, feeling God’s parental sense of humor as he says, “I told you so.”
Now here we were, standing on holy ground–ground that will be used to do God’s work, ground that He was asking us to invest in and be a part of. With our little rocks we were getting to be a part of something bigger than ourselves–creating an altar for the Lord to say, “Thank You God, for all that you’ve given me!” and to top it off, committing ourselves–in cement–to our new church home.
Standing over the hole, I closed my eyes to pray. I prayed that people would be drawn into this building, just the way the sign had drawn us in. I prayed that the people who are, like we were, searching for a new church home or perhaps their first church home, will drive by this ultra-cool eco-church (yep, our church is very environmentally friendly) and be compelled to walk in and check it out.
Most importantly, I prayed that our sons will come to know Christ in a real and personal way in this new building, and that the next time that we would be standing here in this very spot it would be when my boys are being baptised.
There were so many people around us, quietly praying and throwing in their rocks, giving all praise and glory to our God. It was such a cool moment that I was blessed to be a part of.
Yeah, you try to stand there and not cry. I dare you.
And what did I write on my rock, you ask? Well, if I told you, then it might not come true.