We are in an exciting time as a church as we prepare to start construction on our new sanctuary. What was once just a vision and often feeling out of reach is now becoming reality as Reliance Church officially has our grading permits from the City of Temecula.
Today, I am full of joy as I reflect on what building a sanctuary means for Reliance Church. It is much deeper than just having a place to meet and a church home, although in a practical sense, that is much needed. The heart of our Building a Legacy Campaign is Proverbs 13:22, “A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children.” This inheritance is much more than physical. It’s spiritual. Our prayer as we build this church is that it will serve to build a spiritual legacy for generations to come.
As we begin construction, you will see that many months go into preparing the proper foundation. (A great metaphor for young men to “take a walk with,” as Pastor Ted often says).
Our grading permit allows us to start this process. The next couple months will involve this foundational work including grading new elevations, moving existing portable classrooms, cutting new driveways and laying utility runs, followed by framing and the build-out of our new sanctuary. We estimate the project will be completed in 9-10 months.
In Matthew 16:18, Jesus makes a promise that involves the greatest building project and one that does not end until He brings us all home. In response to Peter’s confession that He was the Christ, the Son of the living God, Jesus declares, “…on this rock I will build my church.”
When we confess Christ as our Savior and Lord, Jesus, the cornerstone, purchases us (the precious stones with which He builds His church) with His own blood. The apostle Paul told the Corinth church that the foundation upon which they were established was none other than Jesus.
“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 3:9-11
Jesus, then, is the architect, builder, owner and Lord. He is the Master Builder and our first consultant on this job.
I love the description of the church being built in Ephesians 2:19-22. In this passage, you can see a building process described “The household of God” using several forms of the same greek root word “oikos: house.” The most defining translation of the root word is that this house is the house of God, with Jesus as the chief cornerstone. Paul’s main point in Ephesians 2:19-22 is that converted Gentiles, who were once outcasts, are God’s people and included in this house.
“Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.”
Notice how the household that Jesus builds is constructed very specifically and for specific reasons. Paul’s words are inspired and not accidental in emphasizing these things. The word foreigners (aliens) means to be set outside or away. Paul then points out that the Gentiles now share in the household of God and are no longer “away from it.” This is in the past tense “built,” as in, already built. Paul says that the whole building will grow into a holy temple in the Lord, emphasizing the living aspect of the building. It is an ongoing work. God is not done building us. But more than anything, in verse 22 it shows that we are called to work together, each serving a specific work, being perfectly fit together to be a dwelling place for God in the Spirit. What a thought that the building would be for His glory and not ours. The Reliance Church sanctuary will be a conduit and tool for building the real church, God’s people.
“For the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:12
I am selfishly thankful for the vision the Lord gave Pastor Ted to plant Reliance Church because, along with many of you, my family and I are beneficiaries of Christ’s love here in this special community of believers. As God continues His work in and through us, we are not done, (and at times we feel undone) yet God continues to build us up into His image; Making Disciples Who Know, Love & Serve Jesus.
Looking to the future, I’m excited that together in our new home, we will have increased opportunity to minister more than ever before, reaching more people, and spurring one another on toward love and good deeds.
Jesus said you will know My disciples by the love you have for one another. Indeed.