The weekend of Dec. 8-10, 2017, will go down in Tabor lore as one of the most historic and memorable in our history. Our auditorium along with a performing and visual arts space was dedicated to the glory of God. The Shari Flaming Center for the Arts held a ribbon cutting on Friday morning, a Signature Reception for major donors, builders and dignitaries on Saturday morning, a dedication service Saturday afternoon and the first event in the Richert Auditorium on Sunday evening when Handel’s “Messiah” was performed.
The long wait was over. The dream that had been talked about for many years was now a reality. Tabor has its auditorium. The generosity of our people, the diligence of our planning team and the hard work of our construction crew culminated in a weekend that all who were there will remember. We did it. As Jesus said, “With man things are impossible. But with God, all things are possible,” or as Nelson Mandela said, “It always is impossible until it is done.”
By the grace of God and with His help, the Shari Flaming Center for the Arts has been built debt free. The generosity of the people has been overwhelming and humbling. The Signature Campaign is pushing the $19 million mark with almost $14 million specifically for the Shari Flaming Center for the Arts. Hutton Construction, our general contractor, tells us that by its standards, we have a $16 million building. We have been good stewards of the gifts given. Our hearts are filled with gratitude.
Throughout the entire process, there were two literary pieces that I constantly had available for me to read: “Possibility Creed” and “Great People.” Robert Schuller writes in “Possibility Creed”:
When faced with a mountain, I WILL NOT QUIT!
I will keep on striving until I climb over,
find a pass through,
or simply stay and turn the mountain into a gold mine,
with God’s help.
This project took more time, more money, more energy and more leadership than we ever expected. However, dedication weekend affirmed that with God’s help, we never gave up.
A second piece that I read often is about YOU. It is called “Great People,” and I first heard it from Rick Warren.
Are ready to help me
At the right time
In the right way
People I do not even know yet!
I promise: I’ll never give up because I do not have the help,
but I will trust God to provide!
God has resources to help you that you have not even considered.
There are multiplied thousands of persons with all sorts of talents, skills, concerns, and contacts that God can bring into your life in order to fulfill His plans.
So open your eyes and see the faces of people around you.
Open your ears to hear what they are saying.
Today, tomorrow, next week, you’ll meet someone – someone who is just the person you need.
That right person will come along to fill the right place at just the right time.
And you will marvel knowing that God arranged it so beautifully!
You, the people, made this possible. Together on Dec. 8-10, we celebrated, worshiped and rejoiced at what God had done in us and through us. There was a pent-up joy that exploded as we gathered. People came from all over just to see, enjoy and participate in the experience. It was an event that we will all long remember. The Hallelujah Chorus has never sounded so good.
Finally, one word summarized my experience of the weekend…GRATITUDE. I had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for everyone who made it happen. My soul could not contain the incredible joy and deep appreciation for the thousands who made the dream a reality. My heart was and still is filled with THANKSGIVING for all who made this possible. THANK YOU.