The last few days have been, well, eventful. As some of you know, we have been looking to expand our ministry space for the last year and a half into adjacent attic spaces. While the whole endeavor from the beginning involved shifty privatization laws, multiple players, and an inexperienced foreigner leading the way on the whole thing (me), I was still pretty optimistic that we would be able to increase our space to sufficiently house our ministry, at least a little bit. However, after our last conversation with a powerful neighbor in the building, it not only appears that what once was mutually possible is no longer permissible, it also appears that most of our neighbors would much rather we left the building all together.
While I can understand a bunch of college students singing, and ascending/descending an old wooden stairwell is not a plus for our neighbors, I still am pretty upset that our neighbors are rejecting our proposal that does not have any negative effects towards them (Shannon is taking it a lot better). I am upset about lots of this, really. I am upset that something I have persevered toward for so long seems to be impossible now. I am upset that what I once was told, what one neighbor recommended for us to do, something which would not cause any disturbance to anyone in the building, is now something this same neighbor won’t even discuss and we are being treated like hated business competitors. I am upset that the good things we are doing for the community, for students, for this nation in Jesus’ name is being considered an inconvenience, even despised. I am upset that now my faith requires that I must love these people who have just qualified themselves as my enemies. I am upset that we are now back at square one.
What are we going to do? I am not sure. We could still claim the spaces, expect a lawsuit, and lawyer up; but you know, that doesn’t sound like the most tremendous moral example. We could try to stick it out with these neighbors, simply keep using the space we have, be incredibly tight with our scheduling, and accept the fact that we will not be able to do all the things we would like to or have a service as large as we would like. However, currently the best option appears to be to put the money we have raised towards the remodeling and buy a larger space; but even with that money and the sale of our current space, we are looking to still be substantially short of what it appears we will need.
For sure we need wisdom in all this. What is the lesson here? what is the direction God wants us to take? We are frustrated, tired, and now very clearly Lord, on our knees. Hear our prayers we ask.
Would you join with us in prayer during these next few months? Would you pray that God would make a way?