Monday, September 15, 2008

The Year in Review: Life-Change Story #9

One of the hardest parts of planting a church in Round Rock, TX, oddly enough, is finding a place to meet for worship. You would think in suburban Austin, in a city with a fast-growing population and lots of construction growth, meeting places would abound. You would think wrong. The main obstacle to new churches finding meeting places is the current school-district facility policy that forbids rental of school properties on Sundays. With schools off the table, planters are forced to look into other places (like theaters, community centers, shopping centers, etc.).

When we started looking for a place to meet, a new Cinemark movie theater was being built near our neighborhood. They were open to having us meet in their theaters, but we knew that childcare would be a challenge. The only other location that we could find that would really meet our needs was the YMCA of Round Rock, but I had already been told by another planter who had asked that he had received a "no" and that the location was really not available. Not knowing any better, we decided to ask anyways.

Well, I can still remember our first meeting when three of us from our church-plant team (Toby, Patrick, and me) went to see Sheri Yerrington, the director of the RR YMCA. In the first few minutes of the conversation, she gaves us all the reasons that she was resistant to the idea of a church using the Y facility - from previous bad experiences to the wear on the facility. About 10 minutes into the conversation, however, Sheri's whole demeanor changed, and she told us that she really did want us to meet in the YMCA. We talked some more and she became more excited about the partnership opportunities we could find in impacting the lives of people in our community.

Finally, it came down to cost. She asked, "do you think $2000 a month would be fair?" We couldn't believe it! God had provided a great facility at a great location at a great price. We continue to have a great relationship with the YMCA, and we're pumped to see how He uses our partnership in the future.

I guess it shouldn't suprise us so much when God answers prayer.

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