June 2009

Groundbreaking for the new Faith Baptist Church building site was a very exciting day! The church property that was the home of the church for the last nearly 33 years was sold three years ago. It was paid off and with the proceeds a new property was purchased on which to build. Land is very expensive in Sydney, so the land, a bit under 3 acres, was purchased. During these three years the church has saved all they could, but a large loan will be required for the building project.

Building in Sydney for this type of building also attracts a lot of exensive government-required expenditures. A huge underground reservoir to hold all the rainwater that comes on the property during a certain period of time is required. They will also be required to pay for a small electric substation. Bureaucrats have to think up something to justify their keep!

The groundbreaking service was the most unusual one I have ever attended! Pastor Nabil had planned it down to every detail, and it was a beautiful, symbolic occasion! It was a beautiful day weather-wise and a large group of the brethren were on hand. They asked me to shovel the first few scoops of dirt which I did with an experienced hand! Somebody said, “It appears you know how to use that shovel!” I said, “Yes, and I used it a lot in the Lebanese building programs, and nobody was standing around taking my pictures when I did it like you’re doing today!”

Even the small children of the members had their opportunity to shovel some dirt into the hole and be involved in the building program. They read the church covenant and rededicated themselves to it. Then the covenant was rolled up and placed in a bottle that will be buried at a particular place on the site for future generations to remember their covenant. Every one was challenged to really get behind the building program. Though the council required a building company to undertake the job, that company will allow the church the opportunity to do any work that it can contribute.

Please pray for the Lord’s hand to be upon every phase of the work: open doors for saving on the materials and labor, favorable weather and conditions-our God is concerned about all of these details. Pray for the people and their commitments to the building fund. It is a great challenge, but our pastor is leading with wisdom and spiritual insight, so we are looking to the Lord for great things!