It was a monumental moment when a local government funded agency approached us about providing The Dream Campaign in one of its local neighborhoods. We never expected that we would get the opportunity. We short changed God that HE could get us into anywhere he wanted. We worked on that project for almost a year. Meetings and paperwork. Waiting and Dreaming.
When we submitted our proposal we were very clear about the fact that we were a faith based organization. We submitted a sample of our lessons which is based on biblical leadership principles.
Everyone was accepting and excited. We moved our stuff into the community center, had sign ups and waited. And waited. And waited...
We were waiting on an MOU for the building use agreement. I was quite dismayed when I opened the attachment to read that we could not pray, have devotionals, talk about God, etc. It essentially said, "come offer your program, but don't do your program." The only thing that had been mentioned to that point was that we couldn't put bible verses on the walls since the building may be used for other things. I emailed them back and said, "I can't sign this...I can't be something I'm not and I've been upfront from day 1."
They scheduled a conference call and with great regret and heartfelt apologies owned the fact that there was an oversight in the process. They assumed since parents were signing off their childs participation in a faith based organization it would be acceptable. The legal team that handles all of their paperwork informed them otherwise..."Separation of Church and State" stands.
There was sadness that this project we had invested so much time in had abruptly ended with absolutely no warning, but without knowing, it was actually an interruption that ushered a greater opportunity for us.
What we did not know was that the ministry in our own backyard was going to double in size during the course of our "Wait." We did not know that the following week we would have 60% growth in students and a 150% growth in volunteers. Had the expansion of our ministry to an additional location happened when we were expectating, we would not have been prepared for the growth right where we are on a daily basis. We would have been stretched too thin and struggling to train and duplicate at a rate that would prove beneficial.
I say all of that to say that sometimes the interruptions in our life serve a much greater purpose than we can even fathom. I am a dreamer. A visionary. A creative. I am always looking forward and planning for the NEXT thing. Sometimes what God is doing is right where I am with what He has given me in that moment. Maybe there is a greater quality to what I can be doing now before expanding. Maybe the kids in our neighborhood need to be able to knock on our door on Tuesday and Thursday and know someone will answer...not be somewhere else. More is not always best. We are almost in a position where we can offer an after school program where we are. That was never on our radar, but our increase in activitiy and the need to personally reach each student personally almost makes it necessary. Sometimes growth means going deep before going wide.
Is there an area of your life that needs to go deep before going wide?
Do you seek for the opportunity in interruptions?
Learning to love the here and now,