Should Your Church Build In These Times Of Economic Uncertainty?

I am hearing this question a lot these days, “Should our church build given the economic situation?” While a specific church situation may otherwise dictate, I believe that the general answer is that it should, if certain conditions are true.

Here’s my premise. God is bigger than any economic crisis. He’s bigger than Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, and Wall Street. Sadly our lives don’t reflect what our money reminds us. Our forefathers were wise enough to know not to trust the money, that is why they wrote a reminder to us, “In God We Trust”, on every bill.

In 2 Corinthians 9:8 Paul says, “ And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed;”

And Jesus said, Therefore do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?’ or “What shall we drink?’ or “What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:31:33.

We have an abundance for every good work, – not sometimes, but always! No one is going to lose their house or go hungry because they gave to the work of the Lord with a joyful heart as they respond to the leading of the Lord. Better to trust the promises of God than our feelings about our present circumstances.

What a great witness, when the entire country is pulling back, for a church to be seen growing forward! I believe a church can, and should, step out in faith and build, regardless of the world’s circumstances, if the following conditions are true.

  1. There is a real kingdom need to build. Not “want to”, “would like to”, or “wouldn’t it be cool if”, but “you need” to build. This means you are out of room and cannot accommodate the souls that the Lord is sending your way (i.e. you either build or put out a “no vacancy” sign) or it is the long-term and deeply held conviction that you are called to a ministry that you cannot provide for in your current facilities. Your church leadership and church body as a whole need to pray long and hard about the need to build and be in overwhelming concurrence (80% of more) that you truly believe you need to build.
  2. Your church continues to see growth (the exception would be there is just no more room to grow and visitors don’t come back).
  3. You know what you need to build and what you can afford to build, given the current finances of the church. This is best accomplished through a needs and feasibility study which will not only answer these questions, but will also be able to gauge the church’s readiness to build.
  4. Your church as started or will be soon starting a capital campaign. A capital campaign is a key element in a church building program, and should be begun in advance of the construction. The benefits of a church capital campaign are too many to list here, but one of the advantages is that it will objectively determine whether the congregation will financially support a building program.

The bottom line is this truth; Lord, Your will shall not take me where Your grace will not sustain me. God’s grace is sufficient to meet our needs and accomplish His purposes.


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