It’s the good news, people!

Did you miss the last post? Click here to go back.

Yall, I’ve got some awesome news! But, it’s me – so you know I’ve got to say a lot before I can actually tell the news. 

My church is homeless. {That’s not the good news..}

My pastor and his brother started Christ Central Lake City around 20 years ago, give or take, and ministered there together sharing pulpit time. In 2008, Pastor Mark broke away and began a new church, Christ Central Alachua. The first service was held in a living room with 18 people. Since then, CCA has relocated four times.

When I moved out of my parent’s house, I immediately began looking for a new church to call home. I loved the church I had been attending, but it was just too far to drive there every week. I tried out a lot of churches, I was determined. A lot of okay churches, but they just didn’t feel like the right fit for me.

After talking to a friend of mine about my search and the type of church I was looking for, she invited me to go to her church with her on a Wednesday night. Christ Central Lake City was about the same drive as my old church, but she said that on Wednesdays, she’s in the college-aged group, it’s not like a regular service in the sanctuary. She said even if the drive isn’t feasible every week, she knew I’d love it just as much as she does, and just wanted me to go with her.

I did love it.

The church hunt continued… Months later I was talking to a coworker and saying how I so wished that CCLC wasn’t so far away. Then she mentions that they have a sister church about 15 minutes away from here, her parents attend it. Shut the front door! So that Sunday I had to check it out, and during the sermon, I just felt that relief of “I’m home.”

For my first visit to CCA, services were being held in a middle school lunch room. Oh man… There was a drink machine in the back of the room that roared so loud, you could tell that Pastor Mark was having to yell, even with using a mic. At the end of service, I noticed everyone folding up their chair and walking it over to a storage unit. And that wasn’t it. After attending CCA for a while, I finally heard it all. Staff was having to get there hours early to air out the building because it would be so unbelievably hot in there (they said they needed to get Satan out, we were bringing Jesus in!), put soap, paper towels, etc. in the bathrooms because there was none, set up band equipment, move cafeteria tables out and folding chairs in, bring in the video equipment and screens, the list goes on…

I don’t remember why, but we ended up having to leave that lunch room. I think they were going to start charging a ridiculous amount or something like that. So not only were we homeless, but then we didn’t even have our temporary home.

But God’s always working! That’s really the good news!!

Around that time, we found out that the local high school had got a new principal. They had tried and tried to get into the high school auditorium in the past, but the old principal would never approve. This principal did approve! We now have seats, stocked bathrooms, they can leave the instruments. So much better. But still not home.

That’s okay. God wasn’t finished, and his plans are ALWAYS bigger and better than our own.

In 2015, we bought our home. A 60,000 sq. ft. shopping plaza. Unconventional? Maybe. Perfect for CCA? Absolutely! And yall, it is right smack down in the middle of downtown!

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So the other day, C and I are driving by, and there is a huge banner on the side of the road that says, “Future home of Christ Central!” To say I was ecstatic would be an understatement. I was hootin’ and hollerin’ and praisin’ and pointin’ (because C was looking at me like I had five heads, he had no idea why I was yelling).

Now finally for the good news… I was bored at the dealership today, waiting to do paperwork {I got the Equinox!} and decided to pop on facebook. You know, because what better way to kill time? While I was doing the ol’ scroll through, I saw a few posts from CCA. Although we’ve been able to do a lot of work on the outside of the building, had the parking lot repainted, cleared the inside of the building, apparently there’s been a hold-up waiting to get all the proper permits and everything to be able to begin the renovations. And this morning it was approved!!!!

You may not think that’s good enough news to justify you reading this whole post, but I am so stoked! My home is getting a home!

I don’t attend service very often, but I am so passionate about this church. I love going, but I also love my sleep. A boss once told me, “you don’t need beauty sleep, you need attitude sleep!” and attitude sleep is right! But I follow along with the sermons. They’re all posted online at ccalachua.com, on itunes, and we have a free app where you can watch/listen to them.

If you want to get a feel for our church and what we’re all about, check this out!

I’ve watched that 2015 recap video so many times, and still tear up every time. Then come the baptism scene, I’m a blubbering mess. How beautiful is that to see people giving their life to God!
Also, if you watch the 2015 recap video, you’ll catch a glimpse of that banner I was talking about.

CCA has grown from 18 people in a living room to owning our own place, having hundreds of attendees every week, members in 46 different zip codes, and people all over the world watch the sermons! How incredible is that?! That’s GOD. It’s all Him. It’s all for Him, it’s all because Him, It’s all about Him.

I encourage you to check out the website or app. Maybe watch a sermon. I know you’ll fall just in love with CCA as I have! And if you feel compelled to help us build our church, you can give right there from the website or app. And here’s the best part, when you tithe with CCA, you can specify where you want your money to go. You have options for: Tithe, Offering, New CCA Facility Interior, Permanent Facility Fund, Kid Central, Verge Student Ministries, Verge Camp 2016, Volunteer Polo, MOH Book. And you put whatever dollar amount you’d like next to the appropriate category(-ies).

Now I’m not trying to be pushy,  ‘shove religion down your throat’, or trying to convince you to do something you don’t want to do. That’s not how I roll. Like I said, I’m just passionate. I love my church, and I love my God even more.

And I love you! And hope that your week has been going better than mine.
-L

 

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