About My Father’s Business, a Grace Brethren church in Washington, D.C., recently faced a dilemma. Their building had been sold and they needed to find a new meeting place. Pastor Stephen Joyce recently shared their story with the pastors and leaders of the Chesapeake District of Grace Brethren Churches. Read it in its entirety below.
As you all know, we had been looking for a place to continue our outreach ministry in Washington, D.C., because our old site had been sold. It is has been a journey. For the past 1 1/2 years, we have, along with you, prayed and searched, prayed and searched. I must be honest, I almost fainted because it seemed that all doors were being closed. Because of the high cost of real-estate rental, I had given up on us finding a building in Washington, D.C. We were paying $15.00 per foot and once we left the space it would be rented for $50.00 per foot. In despair, we started looking in Maryland and even considered moving into Virginia.
What I failed to realize that there were many lessons for me and my team to learn in our searching process. We were searching for a building and God turned the search inward to our hearts. In the process, God was teaching us lessons of trust and about His sovereignty. We quit looking for what we wanted and started focusing on what God wanted. We had accepted that if we didn’t find a building before our termination date of the old building that we knew that we needed to continue to stay together and continue our ministry in DC. One of our members said that we must stay together and continue the work of the ministry, “Even if we have to meet under a tree in a park somewhere.”
In was 11:59 p.m. on our building relocation timetable. I told our members that when we got a building it will be because God would do it in a way that no one could get the glory but Him. We needed a miracle. And that is just what God gave us.
Our lease at our old building was scheduled to end on May the 31st. We were standing in front of the Red Sea, and it was on May the 31st, the same date that our lease expired, that God parted the waters and we signed a new lease for a new place to worship and do outreach ministry in Washington, D.C.
The building that we now occupy is only 12 minutes from where we use to be. We are still in the heart of the city. We are in a better place than where we were, our rent is a couple of hundred dollars less than what we were paying and God relocated us into an area where there is a sea of homeless and hurting people so that we can continue to be About Our Father’s Business.
During our sojourning, I kept telling our people that we were not the only ones praying and that God had you all praying with us as well. I write this letter so that we all can celebrate together.