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Summary: God's call to invest generously in the Kingdom.

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The Heart of Generous Builders

Series: The Generosity that Builds a Future

June 2, 2013 - Brad Bailey

INTRO:

All of us want to build something with our lives...to invest in that which has a lasting nature.

One of those opportunities came with the planting and establishing of this church on the Westside of Los Angeles... what became the first Vineyard church.

It began in 1974 when the first group of lives began to gather.

By about 1987... those gathering became increasingly clear about the value of establishing a facility to glorify God on the Westside; that which would serve in reaching out to our community, releasing gifts of worship and the arts, and raising up the ‘next generation.’

They began looking and saving and engaging every opportunity.... for thirteen years.

We began the year 2000 with a sense that this was to be a year of critical change… changes that would be foundational to building our future… and in faith we set specific goals for prayer in our new year newsletter. The two most lofty and longstanding were to help raise up the next generation ... and to finally secure property to serve as a ministry center on the Westside…. and for both to unfold THAT year.

In that very season we saw the growth of emerging generations and the start of would lead into the Altear gathering.

And in that season we had a property come forward that caused us to do some soul searching regarding the location and dynamic we were called to. I came to the conclusion which I shared with our Council and broker that the best location in terms of cost and impact would be along or near Centinela Avenue around Venice or Washington Blvd. Shortly after, we had our all church retreat, and when I returned home that Sunday night there was a fax about a property at Centinela and Venice Boulevard. I went by and realized it was Bruno’s restaurant, a landmark property we all knew well.

Long story short..

On June 26th of 2000 we signed the initial contract to enter escrow. (This began 60-day escrow period concluding August 25th)

On July 9th of 2000 I announced that we had negotiated to purchase Bruno's Restaurant...there was an eruption from a community that had been so invested. And to everyone's surprise the owner of Bruno's Restaurant was there at our worship service.

The following Sunday, July 16th - provided a short presentation

Then began a dramatic several months. By any natural assessment...it was hard to imagine how we could pull this off financially.

And it was exactly 12 years ago this month (June 10th, 2001) that a community of lives called to be Christ on the Westside gathered in this beautiful facility to dedicate it to God.

Most of us here today probably were not yet part of this calling....I know some will never forget it. (Raise your hand / stand if you were here.)

We prayed that God would give us a story...and he did... as profound as any I have known.

We don't have time to share all that God did...but I would sum it up as this:

> God taught us about the Generosity that Builds a Future

God poured into our GENEROSITY...expanding it...and expanding our faith.

Today... we are going to celebrate that story by looking at a similar time in Israel's history that spoke into our lives...and still does.

I want to invite us into a picture that’s captured our hearts…it’s a moment in O.T. history in which the people of God… our spiritual fore parents... took up a similar season in their lives to provide for a place of worship and ministry. It was the original temple of God after Israel had entered the Promised Land. It’s described in 1 Chronicles 29 and it describes the GENEROSITY that flowed through them.

Stand and read text loud together... (it's a long text but a rather dynamic moment for us to engage together.)

1 Chronicles 29:1-20 (in part)

[29:1] Then King David said to the whole assembly: "My son Solomon, the one whom God has chosen, is young and inexperienced. The task is great, because this palatial structure is not for man but for the Lord God. [2] With all my resources I have provided for the temple of my God… [3] Besides, in my devotion to the temple of my God I now give my personal treasures of gold and silver for the temple of my God, over and above everything I have provided for this holy temple… [5]… Now, who is willing to consecrate himself today to the Lord?"

[6] Then the leaders of families, the officers of the tribes of Israel, the commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds, and the officials in charge of the king's work gave willingly. [7] They gave toward the work on the temple of God five thousand talents and ten thousand darics of gold, ten thousand talents of silver, eighteen thousand talents of bronze and a hundred thousand talents of iron. [8] Any who had precious stones gave them to the treasury of the temple of the Lord in the custody of Jehiel the Gershonite. [9] The people rejoiced at the willing response of their leaders, for they had given freely and wholeheartedly to the Lord. David the king also rejoiced greatly.

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