The first week of December 2014 I found a commercial lease space that I felt would be the new home of MPNCanton from the second I drove into the parking lot. The next 6 weeks we negotiated a contract, met with our key leaders, elders and Trustees. We signed the contract at the end of January 2015. There was some buildout to be done but we were told that would take 30-45 days. So we were hoping to be in by Easter.
We announced it to our congregation. We started the architectural drawings and submitted paperwork to the city of Canton. Easter came and went…but maybe we’d be in by early summer.
Then we found our we had to get a conditional use permit to temporarily rezone the building so a church could meet there. We filed some more paperwork. Then we waited. Eventually we met with the city Planning and Zoning commission who had several meetings and considered our case. It was eventually approved. Summer came and went…but maybe we’d be in by the fall.
Then it had to go before the city council…twice. Eventually it was approved. Now we could get our building permit and start building out. But now our plans had “some issues” and the inspectors had to review our drawings again. We had to make a few changes. Fall came and went…but maybe…
As I write this I have been told that the plans are being approved today and we can finally get our permit and start building. I’m excited. I’m frustrated. I ready to get started…
I don’t know what you’re waiting on, but what I’ve learned over the last 11 months, and the last 9 months, and the last 6 months, and the last 3 months, and the last 3 weeks is this…
I can’t make something happen faster than it’s supposed to happen.
None of the details above are meant to cast a negative light on the people making decisions, reviewing plans or involved in the process somewhere along the way. It’s just the way the story has played out.
But something interesting has happened along the way while we waited.
New people showed up to our church at the school where we meet every Sunday. When we asked “how did you find out about us?” we heard something really interesting. More than at anytime in our nearly 4 years of existence we heard “I was just driving by and saw your flag (or the cars pulling in) (etc) and decided to try it out.”
Because I’m not God I don’t know if those people would have driven by the new building 7 miles away if we had moved in at Easter, or in the Summer, or in the early fall. But we’re still in the school…and now so are they.
When I get emotional and frustrated about having to wait I miss that something else might be going on.
So, again, I don’t know where you’re having to be patient, or what you’re waiting on, but ask yourself this question:
What is God doing NOW that I’m missing because I’m focused on what’s NEXT?
Once you see it, you might not be in such a hurry to move past it.