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Bixby News

Urgent prayer request regarding a new meeting place!

26 September 2017 | by Bixby

Please join us in prayer regarding some recent developments concerning a new potential meeting place!

Here are the details:

Two weeks ago I discovered that the owner of the restaurant where we meet on the Lord’s Day was unhappy that our children’s chairs were leaving marks on the floor in the waiting area of the restaurant where the children had been having their class. He wanted our group to stay only in the back conference room where we have our main church service. Our using this area alone would eliminate the possibility of having a children’s Sunday school class. I have since visited the restaurant twice during the week to speak to the owner. The Lord has given us good conversations, and the owner has agreed to let the children meet in another, smaller area by an outside door, if we use our own table and chairs. We thank God for this provision. However, it still presents many challenges. Here is a picture of the area as we found it this last Sunday morning.

Thankfully, the workers moved the motorbikes outside and cleared away the dishes and drinks as our children’s workers worked to wipe things clean just before the children began their class. The area is, however, right next to a main exit through which the workers pass while taking out the trash, etc. Right behind the teacher is also the closet which they have to access for their uniforms and other things! Then there was also the vacuuming and cleaning which is going on all around them! (You can scroll down to the end of this post to see some videos that our coworker Kristi Colas filmed this last week.) Need I say that we really would like another place to meet?

In my conversation with the restaurant owner, I assured him that we would move away as soon as we found a better place. He suggested I go to a nearby Ford dealership as he had heard they were trying to rent a large meeting room that is attached to their dealership. I won’t give you all the details, but I have been amazed at how God has arranged the events that followed.

  • When I arrived at the dealership, to ask about a building I could not find listed, but had only heard about from a restaurant owner, I found not only the local boss, but the general director of the business that runs at least seven Ford dealerships in the area. This general director works out of another location in another city, but just happened to be there that morning when I showed up. He is the one in charge of this property and with whom I have been interacting ever since. Just a coincidence that he was there?
  • The building is presently rented out to a business that they are in the process of evicting, because they are not paying their rent. So technically they don’t even have access to it. However, the man they are evicting happened to be there, so the general director at Ford offered to go over right then and to knock and see if the current renter would let us in, which he did.
  • The area available is itself very large (500m2) and nearly new. It meets the codes for fire safety, etc. This is literally the only building we have seen that we could move into nearly as is. The location is ideal as well: right in Sarcelles, but on a major road, across the street from a very large mall, and right next to a multiplex cinema that is under construction.
  • What is the most significant for me, is that the owners of the Ford dealership (which is attached to the building we are looking at) have acted very favorable to the idea of having us as neighbors. This was to me the biggest surprise!
  • The current price for renting is far beyond our means, but the director told me they were also interested in selling it. I left encouraged by the fact that our project had been so favorably received, but wondering where in the world we could find enough money! Later, we had the idea of asking them if they would be willing to rent-to-buy, since finding a loan will be humanly impossible for us at the present time as well. I left him a message and he called me back from a business trip in Portugal and said, “That would work perfectly for us because that is exactly what we had in mind.” He then invited me to come meet with him and the CEO of the group in another city here in the department to present us with an offer.

All that to say that I, along with Albert Xandry (lead pastor of our mother church in Saint-Denis), will being meeting with these two men this coming Thursday at 2 p.m. (8 a.m. EST). We really don’t know what to expect, but we want to follow this lead as far as God will allow.

Here is what I am asking our church members to pray for:

  • Pray that God will clearly close the door if this building is not what He wants for us. We should never pray to force the hand of God, but to implore him to act according to His will.
  • Pray that God will give much wisdom to Albert and me in our conversation with these men.
  • Pray that, if God wants us to advance in this project, He will make these men very favorable to us and give to them a desire to help us make it happen.
  • Pray that God will provide financially in a way that fills us with wonder and demonstrates His grandeur.
  • Pray that God will grow our faith through this experience.

Would you please join us in praying to God for these things?

 

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This is what the restaurant looked like when we arrived last Sunday morning:

This video will give you an idea of the vacuum noise we are up against during our children’s class! (Enter this password: trbixby.france)

[vimeo

 

kids’ SS class from Ruth Bixby on Vimeo.

]

 

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