Faith Enables Us To Live Daringly

July 13, 2017

When a rural church invited me to be the speaker for a four day conference it was to celebrate the tenth anniversary of its founding. The church had begun with

Roger Campbell

Roger Campbell

three families holding services in a rented hall and five years later had grown enough to purchase a small church building, a parsonage and some acreage on a picturesque country corner. Upon my arrival, however, I found the congregation had outgrown their purchased building and were now again meeting in a rented hall.

I quickly recognized this as a caring congregation. An atmosphere of love could be sensed in every service and their effective ministry to the community was evident by the number of children and teens attending. The banquet hall, seating about 150, was filled with enthusiastic worshippers. Sunday School classes were being held in curtained off areas along the side of the hall, requiring some teachers to compete with others to be heard. Noise and confusion reigned.

Later, the pastor shared his concerns with me about these limited, temporary facilities. He said he knew something had to be done about their crowded conditions and nomadic existence, but admitted he didn’t know what to do. Word from the owners of the hall that their rent would soon be raised (perhaps a poorly disguised ploy to pressure them into buying the hall) added to the urgency of the problem. But what could they do?

The church still owed a sizable amount on the building they had outgrown and the leaders were understandably reluctant to plunge the congregation more deeply into debt.

Following the final service of my four day series, the pastor asked me to meet with him and his board to pray and talk about their need of finding a way to properly house their present congregation and allow for future growth. In that service, I had challenged the members to think big and expect God to increase their outreach, saying this would require vision, faith and hard work, the ingredients of growth in any church.

Months later, I received a letter from the pastor of this church that had seemed to be financially trapped. They had decided to accept my challenge, expecting God to respond to their faith. From that moment on they were in the mountain moving business.

Plans were drawn for an attractive and adequate addition to their country church. A local bank offered to finance the project with reasonable interest rates and payments they believed they could afford. There were on their way.

But that was only the beginning. Once the building was started, donations of labor, equipment and money began pouring in from those in the congregation and others. People in the community were moved by what was happening and offered to help.

Now for the rest of the story: the miracle.

The pastor’s letter reported that the construction loan he and the church leaders had feared to face was paid off exactly one week after it was signed. The church dared to act in faith and God came through for them.

In his book, “Paths to Power,” A.W. Tozer wrote: “In every denomination, missionary society, local church or individual Christian this law operates. God works as long as His people live daringly. He ceases when they no longer need His aid.”

Our Lord identified faith as the key to both eternal and abundant life (John 10:10).

God does wonderful things for those who dare to trust Him. Do we dare?

Roger Campbell was an author, a broadcaster and columnist who was a pastor for 22 years. Contact us at rcministry@ameritech.net

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