Many pre-earthquake plans have been changed or altered post-earthquake. We have to adjust to change, the positive aspect is our challenge to create new thinking; learning new ways to grow.
Growth is a biblical mandate we carry at many levels. God called us from the beginning to multiply (Gen 1:28). Furthermore, the gospel was never intended to be stagnant, but a living challenge for us to spread to the whole world (Acts 1:8). The problem with growth; it costs time, effort and money. Often the very thing we don’t have. But if the challenge is birthed from God, He will deliver.
Our present challenge is to expand our existing site to its’ potential. We felt this has been a word from God for a long time and it seems right for us; post-earthquake, to move ahead. It is clear that our empty section must be turned into car parks. We struggle midweek to provide enough for our own use. We also struggle with our auditorium capacity. It is not large enough, and if we want our congregation to grow numerically; this is a must. The basic plan is to build over our existing auditorium using the driveway and some of our existing car parks. Our car parks on the empty section will compensate and also meet Council requirements.
We have submitted plans to our Town Planner who will now take this to the Council and apply for a building consent. This stage is simply a footprint with no architectural drawings. If this is successful, we will then call a meeting for the whole church to make further proposals and decisions.
You might ask; what is the point to grow more in numbers? Are we not happy with what we have got? Isn’t the money better spent in other places? There are many answers to these questions, but the root answer should always be around our mission. The strength of our overseas and home mission is dependent on the strength of our home base. Simple maths shows that size has something to do with mission.