Nehemiah Project …
Building for the 21st Century
God has a pilgrimage for the people of Jerusalem Baptist Church. He has done so much for us, in us, through us, and throughout the history of the church, but He is now taking us on a pilgrimage that will require an ever-growing faith. This is an exciting and a very crucial time in the life of Jerusalem Baptist Church as we see God inviting us to be a part of His work both here in Fairfax County, as well as around the world. This invitation is much larger than we are capable of doing when you look at it from human eyes. We must trust that God is leading us, and walk with Him by faith!
The Lord burdened us with issues that related to our property. Since that time, we looked at several needs and concerns and realized that we had come to a time where major decisions were needed related to repairs and upkeep of our facilities. While evaluating these needs, it became obvious that one decision began to impact other needs and decisions, to the point where we realized that we needed to step back and take an overall look at our entire property.
We put together a task force to study and evaluate the property and facilities. This group was tasked not just to bring back a report to the church but to bring back a report AND a recommendation. They presented their report to the church with a recommendation that we develop a master plan for the entire property and update our Special Use Permit. They challenged us to look beyond the immediate needs that we have as a church and to promote good stewardship of God’s gifts by developing an efficient plan to best use of our land and resources. By developing a long-term “roadmap” for orderly expansion, we could organize future growth in harmony with current needs to ensure that any future building programs compliment and support membership growth.
Based on this report and recommendation our church unanimously voted to go forward in developing a master plan through what we called “VISION for the 21st Century”. What began as an intense 18–24-month process turned out to be a 4-year process that required numerous steps, requiring a number of professionals, such as an architect, a site engineer, and a land attorney.
Our application to update our Special Use Permit and approval of our master plan was granted by the Fairfax County Board of Zoning Appeals.
The Process Begins …
We now transition from “VISION for the 21st Century” to the “NEHEMIAH PROJECT … Building for the 21st Century”. Over the next several months we must hear from God as to His plan for how we are to implement this Master Plan.
Several things are now before us.
Vision … that God has initiated this to show us our need, and His invitation to us to join Him in His work.
Faith … that God is at work in this and that all things are possible with God.
Prayer … that we are totally dependent on God for this.
Sacrifice … that God is working through us to accomplish this. This will take time, energy, and money. Are we willing to trust God and obey God through this?
Two facts are clear … if we do not move forward, we will stagnate and die. If we move without God, we will stumble and fall. When we, God’s people, pray and work in oneness, the Holy Spirit will strengthen our commitment to reach Northern Virginia for Christ. As Jerusalem positions for ministry into the 21st Century, God will provide us the opportunity to expand our ministries. For almost 170 years, Jerusalem members have stepped out in faith to minister to our growing community. Can we do less? We must give sacrificially as those who preceded us.