It is amazing the people the Lord uses to accomplish His work in our world. This is something that I have been aware of at each turn from the launch of Living Hope in 2001, through each of the last 19 plus years and even with our existing site development. It is actually very humbling when you realize that God is working on your behalf.
Two week ago I gave a shout out to the architect that the Lord used. I want to use my words today to reflect on a few others that the Lord has used to move the project along. First, I need to give a shout out to all the persons within the church that have done so much to make our ministry possible. Living Hope would not exist without all the sacrificial volunteer ministry that has moved us forward over the last two decades. There are those that have done big things for the church at just the right time. There are also those that have done “little things” week in and week out that also have made a huge impact. I want to say thank you to those that have served, given and prayed!
It is humbling to reflect on all the people outside the church that have been a blessing to our project. I think of a Christian owned company that specializes on hazardous materials that helped us get through the abatement process for the existing home on the property. We got connected to another company that was recommended that could not do the work. The Lord lay on my heart to try again to contact them as several failed attempt. When I was finally able to speak to a real person the gal indicated that they could not do the work but they did provide a possible a lead. The lead turned out to be a business owned by a committed Christian couple. They helped us satisfy the requirements for asbestos testing and abatement. It is humbling to be a part of the Lord’s working.
Thinking of tearing down the old house on the property, the Lord provided another individual that we hired for that purpose. It was a contact of one of the families in our church. Again this is just another example of the Lord at work.
I know that I was a bit naïve in regard to the scope of the process. One of our big needs was to find a Civil Engineer to help first with a feasibility study on the usability of the property. This relationship would carry over to each of the following series of permits. Most of us would not give any thought as to how do you find an engineer for a project of this type. I have originally pursued the route of searching the internet for engineers. It seemed like it was impossible to get calls returned. The reality was everyone had more work than they could handle. The Lord again opened the door through someone who had been in our church that works in the trades industry. He provided me with several names but suggested one that he thought would be perfect for the church. It turned out to be our current engineer. It is humbling to watch God work. Fred Kegel has been a huge blessing through the up and downs of the process.
The words of the prophet Isaiah remind us that God’s ways are not our ways. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”( Isaiah 55:8–9) The journey of the last two decades and especially over the last five years have encouraged me to do my part and then to let the Lord work. The same is true for each of us. It is too easy to wind up fighting the Lord. He always wins!
-Pastor Joe Parkinson