Planning For Growth

The fathers of New York City were trying to plan for growth.  They figured the city was going to grow, but they just weren’t sure how much.  So, they decided to go on the liberal side and give themselves more room than they thought they would need.  The city already had six or seven numbered streets, and so they expanded it all the way out to 19th Street.  The named 19th Street “Boundary Street,” because they were sure New York City would never get larger than that.  Today, New York City has the highest numbered street in America, numbering all the way to 271st Street.  Clearly New York grew much larger then they ever could have imagined.

It is interesting how we place hard boundaries and expectations on things.  We feel we have limitations we can’t exceed.  We do it in our own lives, we do it to others, and we do it in the church.  Too often I see people give up on growth and improvements because they have made up in their minds that they have reached their limits.  People seem to limit themselves long before their actual boundaries even come into sight.  As one man said, “Know your limits, but never accept them” (Anonymous).

Keep in mind that God works through faithful Christians and God is not bound by limitations.  There is no telling how much God will expand our congregations and our own abilities.  The last thing we should do is sabotage our own growth by limiting ourselves.

These powerful words of Ephesians 3:20-21 have never been more true: “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”

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