The GCC Morval Building Project
It’s ready at last!
The building project has been planned for 18 months and now we are ready to raise the funds to make it a reality. There is a lot of money in the world and in the collective possession of those of here at Grace Community Church. £500,000 may not be a lot in comparison to Lionel Messi, the most highly paid athlete in the world who earned almost £101 million in the last year, but it seems like a lot to us. How are we going to complete this project?
10 things the Bible says about money:
Before we start talking figures, let’s look at 10 statements the Bible unashamedly says to us about money from 1 Timothy chapter 6:
We brought nothing into the world, and we will take nothing from it [v7]!
How we use the resources we have here for the kingdom of God, will determine the kind of treasure we store up for ourselves in Heaven [v19].
Those who have an unhealthy interest in theological arguments usually have the wrong thinking about money and how to use it. They think that living in God’s ways will get them even more money [v3-5]!
Our hearts can be led. The longing to be rich changes our desires in such a way that living them out will lead to ruin and destruction [v9].
We can self-harm by loving money. You experience many griefs and even wander from the faith [v10].
Living in God’s ways with contentment is a great gain. You won’t have conflict and tension within yourself with this approach [v6].
If you live for God’s kingdom instead of this world, you can be sure that God will protect your human dignity by giving you what is essential to life – food and clothing [v8].
Instead of pursuing what this world offers, we must pursue and take hold of the eternal life we’ve been called to. That life looks just like the one Jesus lived here [v11-13].
We must profess the same kind of living that Jesus did when examined by Pilate before His crucifixion – one of dependency on God, His authority, and the world that is not seen but can be known [v14-16].
We who are rich be generous with our money to others, be humble about it, set our hopes on the right things, and enjoy having and using the resources God has given us in this way [v17-18].
We have a long history of testimony to God’s provision for us as a Church. When we first bought the site here for £120,000 in 1994, appeals were made that brought £176,000 in from the congregation. We were able to build the site from a worn out home and potato barn to what it is now. Many miracles took place around that time which the book ‘Not the Perfect Church’ has recorded. That book is available free to anyone who would like a copy. God did it then and can do it now. The amount needed is nothing to God. The need for our dependency on Him remains the same as always. The greater the dependency, the more God delights to bring about His kingdom in our lives and the area around us.
What the building will not do:
Having a new building added to the site will not change our hearts. It will not help us walk with God closer. The building is a dead thing and will only facilitate the hearts that we carry within it. It is the Spirit of God that brings life, godliness, and the Kingdom of God. Please don’t be confused either with the vision of the church. A new build is not the vision of the church. The building is one of the means by which the vision of the church can be brought about.
Why the building is needed:
The booklet produced for each church member and regular attender outlines many of the uses that the building will have to achieve our vision. However, there are three very good reasons why this building will be a blessing and is needed:
The need comes from a direct result of the blessings of God. He has blessed us, grown us numerically, given us children to disciple, and the present building is not sufficient or safe enough to continue the ministry within it. As we have sought God and laid the need and the plans before Him, we have not received any revelation or command to leave. Instead, the responsibility to maintain and develop the blessings He has given us weighs on us as a whole. If God has blessed, He will provide.
The building is a wise investment in the current political climate. Christians are increasingly being marginalised and not being allowed to meet in public buildings or schools. Christians will very soon, only be able to meet in places that they own. After that, we may even have those places taken from us as the culture of Europe and the West clash with the Kingdom of God. This building project has an eye on the future.
This is a pivotal opportunity to demonstrate to the next generation what living by faith and obedience looks like. This is the true legacy that we need to give – not money. If we pass on a lifestyle that centres around the world’s values, our children will live like accordingly and will not be invested in building the Kingdom of God in their generation. What we do now will mark our children for life. Do we want stories to pass on? We are make those stories now.
We the leaders of the church, are calling all those who receive from the church here to the most important part of the building project. We are calling you to fast and to pray. Before you even consider any of your finances, we appeal to you and ask that you would bring yourself and if applicable, your family before God in prayer. Please submit this building project to Him. Submit your heart to Him afresh and ask Him to reveal your motivations, desires, and actions that either work for the Kingdom of God or against it. Pray for wisdom for those involved in making the project a reality, and then pray that He will give the resources needed to bring it about. If you have any responsibility for any housegroup or team ministry in the church, please bring these things to them as well.
The cost of the project is estimated at £500,000. To make this amount conceivable in our minds, the church has just over 100 members and up to 200 people attending each week including children. If 100 members were each to give 1% of the amount needed, that would work out at a donation of £5,000 each. For some, that is an easily achievable amount. For others, it is too huge to contemplate. For families where the members are husband and wife, £10,000 seems too much at a first thought.
However, I would like to give an example of how these amounts could be achieved from within the Hillier family. We submit this example to you without any desire to be thought of more highly than we ought, and as an example of God’s goodness to us in what we are able to give. After sitting down together with our budget and opening our hands to God with all that we own, we were given new hearts to raise money in the following ways over the course of a year from September 2019 to August 2020:
Solar Panels: Donate all the money generated over the course of a year
Caravan: Sell the caravan, pay off the debt on it and donate the rest
Car: Sell our family car, downgrade it to a lesser model and donate the difference
Re-budget: Give up the ‘luxuries’ that we enjoy such as our most expensive holiday of the year, reduce the annual Christmas, birthday, and monthly food budgets, reduce other budgets by little amounts, and donate the difference.
After doing this, we are able to pledge £13,200 towards the building fund, on top of our regular tithing to the church and to other Christian organisations / people we give money to. This process revealed more about our dependency on ourselves and our desires that we realised. It has given us a freedom over finances and expectations that has re-orientated our lives to living for the Kingdom of God more and more. We are far more excited about the project having gone through this process. We sat down with our children and explained what was needed and how God wants us to live. At first, they were resistant to the thought of what they were losing, but now they understand more about what is taking place, they are keen for us to start selling more of our things including their own toys and furniture! There is something in the pipeline for the children to take part in which will be explained in the coming weeks.
If anyone wants to donate money to the fund, they can do so with a labelled envelope in the collection each week or in the office postbox, or directly into the special account for the project:
Sort Code: 30-95-08
Account Number: 01624359
Please don’t forget to let our treasurer Rob Humphries, or assistant treasurer Martin Kessell, know if you re making a pledge over funds, and whether you pay tax and are willing to let the church claim the tax back on your donation.
When the money is provided, we will start building. We will celebrate our overall progress in giving through our Sunday morning services, and update the church website, Facebook site, and newsletter as things develop. Please keep praying and if there is anything that God has given you to share with the church, please bring it to one of the services. If there are any questions about the building project, Phil Barnes will be happy to answer them. Any questions about donations and finances, please see Rob Humphries. Any questions about what the building will be used for or any suggestions about raising money, please see one of the church leaders.