Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans. (Proverbs 16:3; NIV)
Our church recently purchased property. Purchasing property is never a small undertaking. It involves a serious investment of time and money. And it should reflect the pursual of a significant purpose.
Our recent purchase of property at 12002 N. Puma Rd. reflects all of these. For the last three years, this has been the site of our Community Christian Outreach Center (CCOC), which we were renting until the purchase. It is from this site that we attempt – and often succeed! – to faithfully serve our neighbors, especially those who live in Avra Valley and surrounding areas. Food (both people and pet food), hygiene items, cleaning supplies, diapers, disability equipment, and more are distributed free of charge to people needing such items. Thanksgiving is coming up, and for a fourth year we will distribute – thanks to the contribution of a generous donor – turkey dinners (we’ve done 150 per year). Every Friday evening, 7 pm, an addiction recovery group meets that is run by our church, and is associated with the S.O.B.E.R. Project. For the past 6 months, a Spanish-speaking Bible study has started to meet on Tuesdays at 7 pm. This group not only is starting to grow, but has been praying and getting ready to do evangelism outreach. Through these and other means, we hope to be able to expand outreach into Avra Valley, in Jesus’ name, as we move into the future. Committed to Him! This is our purpose, these are our plans.
The purchase actually was sparked when we ran into a problem. (Isn’t it often the case that our problems eventually lead to plans that are better than we could have imagined?) About a year ago, we learned from Pima County government that we might have to stop doing business at Puma Rd. due to zoning issues. We might have to move our CCOC. After conversation, our board decided that – whether or not we had to move – it would be more prudent to purchase property than continue to rent. We had a good rental deal, but nevertheless, were spending $6,600/year on rent alone. A great deal of research went into seeking out an appropriate property, one that would be affordable and also in a good location. After much research and prayer, we concluded that the current site was the best one for us, and because the owner (Mark Robertson) was willing to sell, we came to agreement. The purchase went through in August.
We have begun work – thanks to a contribution from another generous donor – on upgrades to the property. Right now, the focus is on the garage, which needs a new roof, new electrical systems, and more. Pastor Nacho Guerrero is overseeing the work.
Within a year, we hope to add a new modular building, but need to wait on that until we are
approved for a conditional use permit. That won’t happen until the spring of 2019 at the earliest, due to a potential new Pima County zoning amendment that would alter how we apply for the permit. In the meantime, Pima County has been good to work with us (as well as other organizations like ours), allowing us to continue with our ministries.
You may wonder: why did we purchase property before receiving a permit? Well, mostly because we trust that God has given us a purpose, to be lived out at this property, and will see us through each step of the way – “will establish your plans” (Proverbs 16:3) – as He has since we started our CCOC in 2013. Secondarily, if circumstances change (for example, if ultimately are we not granted a permit), we still now have property that has value, that can be used in other ways, or can be sold.
For now, and we trust for many years to come, our outreach continues. Please feel free to connect with Kim Blankinship, our Outreach Coordinator, or Frank Pick, our Outreach Assistant, if you would like to join with a group of wonderful volunteers who keep the CCOC humming along, or simply if you have questions about any of the outreach ministries. Additionally, donations of food and other items can be brought to the church on Sundays or when the office is open during the week, and placed in the outreach bin on the altar. Finally, if you would like, you may make a special financial contribution to outreach ministries. Simply send a check with “outreach ministries” in the memo line.
Investments of money and time, living out the purpose God has given us, and God’s strength each and every day, have made our CCOC a force for good in our community. Please pray with us as we do our best to follow His leading, and committing to Him whatever we do.