Our Hope Chest

First for the background. For the last thirty-four years our church has met in various places. We started above a garage, sometimes meeting in a neighboring park, and then moved to various buildings until we outgrew them. We settled in Greene’s Body and Paint shop, and each week some of the men would hose down the floors and set up folding chairs. Eventually, when Logos School got started, we met in their facility, and when Logos moved, so did we. We met in their auditorium, until we outgrew it. Then we met at various places, including the local high school auditorium, the Admin building on the university campus, and at a local hotel. Once Logos built a field house (gym), we began meeting there, and we have been meeting in the gym now for years.

But we own property, and we have wonderful blueprints for our church building. Trusting in God’s providence, we are hoping to see that building in our lifetime! (My husband says that since the Israelites wandered in the wilderness for forty years, perhaps it will take us that long before we get our church building…..but we’re coming up on that milestone in just a few years.) Meanwhile, because we have a large congregation, we are often stymied when it comes to social events.  I have yet to see a wedding in the field house, though it has hosted many receptions. Other local churches are kind enough to rent their space to us for weddings and funerals as well as conferences. So you can imagine that the women in our church are eager to get their hands in and on a church kitchen!

The past couple years the ladies’ fellowship has started an event we call the Fall Jolly, which is a combo craft fair, tag sale, food and arts sale. And we have squirreled away the money made at this event into a “fund” to be used at our discretion. And each year we also help put on our church dinner, called the Winter Feast, which just so happens to be tomorrow night. Rather than renting dishes this year, we have taken our Fall Jolly fund monies and purchased place settings of dishes, silverware, and glasses for 300. And, providentially, we have something like 290 attending the Winter Feast tomorrow night.

Of course this has been a boat load of work gathering all this stuff, and then, you guessed it, washing it. But it has also been quite exciting. After the dinner it will all be hauled off to a closet in the basement of the church office (yes, we do own an office building for Canon Press, our church office, etc.). This huge pile of dishes and glassware is our official Hope Chest, the first installment of what we hope some day will be a large, efficient kitchen, attached to an even larger fellowship hall, which will be attached to a glorious sanctuary.

When that happens, we will throw one big party.

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15 thoughts on “Our Hope Chest

  1. Looking forward to that party! Not that it isn’t fun to see folks flip-flopping their way back to their hotel rooms after a morning swim as we make our way to meet with God. But it’ll be a great day when our surroundings help the Lord’s Supper to feel less like a snack at a convention center (or concessions at a basketball game) and more like the marriage feast of the Lamb.

    And let’s hope it’s just a 40-year wait, and not the 600ish-year wait that it took before Israel built a permanent house of worship. We might have broken a few of those dishes in that time. 😉

  2. Nancy,

    This past Sunday we had a luncheon reception after an exciting ordination service in our Fellowship Hall. Our building is old and has been a fixer upper, but I praise the Lord that we have a permanent place to worship and fellowship. I spent all day on Saturday with some others trying to make the ol’ place look lovely. Unfortunately, we don’t own our own dishes or glassware yet. But you just gave me a wonderful idea and a goal to strive for!

    Congrats on getting your Hope Chest filled! May the Lord bring to fruition your hope for a place to call His Home!

  3. Down here in Phoenix we are truly blessed to have our own church building. Oh, may the Lord bless you for waiting on Him!!!

  4. It is amazing to reflect on what a tremendous blessing your church has been all over the world, and with no building of your own.
    God is really great.
    Makes me think of the passage in Isaiah about not putting your trust in horses and chariots.

  5. Oh I am dreaming with you sister. But I think it is little steps of preparation (like buying 300 dishes) that are the prints we will see leading to those beautiful churches we CRECer’s are all dreaming about.

    Here is to plotting those foot steps to the doors of our grandchildren’s churches. Happy Feastings!! : )

  6. It is encouraging to just read about such vision. Thank you for being wiling to live life ” in a fishbowl”.

    I go to a CREC church in Nashville, Tn and so far our church hope chest has only thing in it; but that one thing is wine glasses! :)

  7. Actually, our friend Francis provided his excellent kitchen at West of Paris so that my daughter and her husband (and his brother Mike who came from Seattle to help them) could prepare the meat. They put 150 pounds of beef tenderloin in the restaurant’s convection oven all at once! Then they transported it to the dinner, where we enjoyed it!

  8. Our church isn’t s old as yours, but we’re waiting to buy an existing facility . . .haven’t heard anything about it for a while.

    Kamilla

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