Summary: This message was used before a Ground Breaking Celebration. It uses the physical building to illustrate what the church is really building.

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BUILDING GOD¡¦S HOUSE - A Ground Breaking Celebration

As we begin to build this new facility - what are we really building? We’ve said it enough around here, but we are not about building structures. In fact, while we have a children’s and office building that will need to be built in the next two years, I’m officially resigning from the building committe today! Its a lot of work, very frustrating, and God didn’t call me to be a builder. But regardless of what we do on this property or any other place in this community, what will our efforts really produce for us?

Paul told the Corinthians, "Don’t you realize that all of you together are the house of God, and that the Spirit of God lives among you in his house?" 1 Corinthians 3:16 (Living) What we are really building is God’s House - not made of blocks or steel or concrete - but made from the changed lives of individuals within our community.

So today, as we prepare to launch out in a new era for us as a church, what does this building represent for us in a spiritual, yet tangible way? What does it mean to Build God’s House?

Building God¡¦s House Means:

1. Breaking Up The Hard Ground

Anytime you begin a building, you have to break up the ground. You have to DISTURB that which was untouched. For some people, especially a Farmer, there¡¦s nothing like a newly plowed field. For a builder, they love to see the ground broke up, leveled and ready to build on. For the farmer ¡V it¡¦s time to plant. For the builder ¡V it¡¦s time to build.

But not ever bodies happy. That poor gophers not happy to have his home destroyed in the field. The weeds and other plants that began to move in on the farmers field ¡V they don¡¦t like having their roots ripped out either. When land is being prepared for a building ¡V not every one is happy. Environmentalist don¡¦t like it when you knock down the trees. (By the way ¡V I love plants & I¡¦m sympathetic to those who want to protect the environment. I hate the idea of knocking down some of our trees too). Neighbors ¡V who don¡¦t want progress often complain of the noise or the addition. So far - We haven¡¦t received any criticize from those outside the Church, nor is anyone complaining INSIDE the Church!! And that¡¦s significant ¡V because Building Programs often cause some to question and argue and squabble. As a congregation ¡V a Family ¡V it is obvious that we are united in our effort. Now ¡V if a time should arise when you feel the need to voice your objection ¡V we have provided a special place for you to drop your written complaints. Right next to the Box as you head out the door ¡V is another receptacle just for you. It¡¦s about this high with a plastic bag. Ignore the fact that it looks like a trash can! Some people just don¡¦t like Change!

But change is necessary to Grow!

¡§Plow up the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you.¡¨ Hosea 10:12 (NLT)

The ground Hosea is talking about is the Ground of our Hearts. People don¡¦t want to be bothered. They like their lives just the way they are ¡V thank you very much!! But Hosea says ¡V and God says ¡V that if we are going to Grow ¡V if we are going to REAP a new and DIFFERENT LIFE ¡V WE MUST BREAK UP THE GROUND! WE must break up our HARDENED Hearts!! WE must prepare ourselves for change.

As we stand on the brink of building this new facility! It will be the catalyst for bringing about change in the lives of people!! Some of that change ¡V some will not want to face!! Every week ¡V we meet folks who are STUBBORNINGLY holding on to Past hurts & Failures and Habits, and REFUSE to Change their present situation. Sometimes ¡V we¡¦ve grown so COMFORTABLE with the Status Quo ¡V We don¡¦t want to Change!! Then there are those who come here READY TO CHANGE!! ¡V But it¡¦s HARD to break up OLD WAYS!

It¡¦s HARD TO Break Up OLD ADDICTIONS & TRADITIONS!! The Ground of Our Past ISSUES has Compacted our Hearts to Be ROCK SOLID!!

Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. Matthew 3:8 (NIV)

Do those things that prove you have turned to God and have changed the way you think and act. Matthew 3:8 (GW)

There are two biblical ideas when it comes to repentance. The first talks about a change of mind, such as to produce regret or even remorse on account of sin, but not necessarily a change of heart. This word is used with reference to the repentance of Judas. Matthew 27:3 says that when he ¡§. . . saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse¡¨ This Type of Repentance is IMPORTANT!! But it¡¦s Not COMPLETE!! What Difference does it Make If You Feel BAD About What You DID ¡V YOU NEVER CHANGE? I’ve heard the definition of INSANITY is "Doing the Same Thing OVER & OVER Again, In the SAME Way Yet expecting A different result."

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