My husband had initiated a large remodeling project in 2003 to update our church building. It was desperately needed as our facility had received little attention since the 1950s. We had terrible, dim lighting; gold-colored theater-style chairs (that smelled!); old musty, green carpet; a huge pipe organ system; metallic-gold wallpaper on the sanctuary’s largest wall; and other memorabilia from that long gone era. Also worth mentioning was the cracked exterior paint, the slippery cement lobby floor, the stair wells that led to nowhere and the missing foundations on parts of the building. It all had to go! As a church, we managed to successfully complete our renovation to a more functional, high-tech and visually aesthetic facility with many families making deep sacrifices to make this happen.

Our biggest issue during the remodel was our city’s building department. They approved our construction plans and then reneged on their approval after we began construction. Our entire sanctuary had been gutted and now they wanted more safety features to the tune of several hundred thousand dollars. If we didn’t comply, they threatened to inspect our extensive building for even more code violations. It felt like extortion and put us in a terrible financial bind. By the grace of God we got through it, but as a new prayer community, we began to pray a simple prayer not realizing the ramifications. FULL REPORT