A House for His Name
The Building of Calvary Chapel Eastside
The Lord said to David, “Because it was in your heart to build a house for My name, you did well…” It is a noble ambition to desire the establishing of a house where the Creator/Redeemer is worshiped. Such a facility also provides a stable gathering place for fellowship, a school of discipleship for the next generation and a bridgehead for outreach into the surrounding community.
Before ascending to heaven, Jesus once again demonstrated His love for mankind by commissioning His followers to take the Good News of eternal life to every man, woman and child. They were to begin in their own back yard, Jerusalem, and then extend their reach in ever-increasing circles to Judea, Samaria and the uttermost parts of the earth. The Eastside is our Judea and Cougar Mountain our Jerusalem. It’s interesting to note that because of zoning restrictions CCE may be the only church allowed to build in this rapidly expanding mountain community that already boasts thousands of family homes.
We believe that where God guides, He provides. The following is a brief accounting of His guidance and provision to date.
“The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places.” - Psalm 16:6
Teri Herrera couldn’t sleep. After ten years of renting space for Sunday worship, her church felt led to look for property on which to eventually build. Though Teri had never dealt with the buying/selling of raw land, she was a Real Estate agent and felt compelled to participate in the search. Day after day, week after week, she searched in vain, yet the inner prompting to persevere grew until it began to keep her awake at night. One day as she was delivering a house-warming gift in Lakemont on the border of Bellevue and Issaquah, she cried out in desperation, “God, you’ve got to show me a sign!” Just then, she reached the corner of Lakemont Blvd and 164th Ave SE. As she looked up, she saw a big sign with the words “Future Church Site” on it.
The developers of Lakemont had set that corner aside for a church to give the area a greater sense of community. Other denominations had offered to pay full price for the choice location, but the master planners wanted a non-denominational church where the broadest spectrum of Christianity would feel welcome. What they discovered about Calvary Chapel Eastside pleased them to the degree that they were willing to discount the price and hold the contract so this relatively young church didn’t have to secure a loan.
Extending Our Borders
“You have extended all the borders of the land.” - Isaiah 26:15
It soon became clear that the L-shaped property would greatly benefit from the one acre land-locked residential plot in its midst. Though it wasn’t for sale, Pastor Robert and board member Oscar Garcia met at the site after church on a Sunday in January of 1997 and prayed that God would somehow open up a dialogue with the owners and that they would be willing to sell. Tuesday morning when the church office opened for the week, there were several messages from the owners of that parcel stating that they had to sell their home and acreage immediately and they had to sell it to us. By February, we were the new owners of a Bavarian-style house that has become affectionately dubbed the Lodge.
In 1998, we submitted plans to the city for Design Review, but it wasn’t until December of 2005 that the city accepted the plans after a successful rezoning of the Lodge acre. That vested us under current environmental regulations that have since been changed in such a way that would have prohibited the building of a church on that site. In the Lord’s perfect timing, we won favor with the city that allowed us to move “further up and further in” as C. S. Lewis put it.
Preparing the Next Generation
“He seeks godly offspring.” - Malachi 2:15
One of the significant improvements that our new facility affords is how well it accommodates our children and youth. They each have rooms they can make their own and all under one roof with the adults. Besides being taught about their Creator and Redeemer from the earliest age, our children will learn how to worship Him from their hearts and with their mouths through the ministry of John Bagge’s roving minstrel team as they visit each class. From the youngest to the oldest, with God’s help, we are seeking to create a culture of worship.
Our 5th/6th graders (a.k.a. G.I.G. or Growing in God), Jr. and Sr. Highers each have their own spacious rooms with age-appropriate worship and Bible study. We invite you to check out the High School’s web site at www.ntbym.com (No Turning Back Youth Ministries) where you can learn about their activities and upcoming events.
Good News for the Chemically Sensitive
“The LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted…” - Isaiah 61:1
There exists within our cities a growing number of men and women who have become allergic to almost every kind of fragrance. They have become home-bound, unable to cope with the potentially debilitating airborne chemicals found in public facilities or on the clothes, skin or hair of people at large. For the believer this means doing without the one thing King David desired of the Lord.
“One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life.” - Psalm 27:4
For the first time a clean room has been built on the perimeter of a sanctuary with a private entrance, restroom and designated HVAC system where chemically sensitive persons can worship with the rest of the congregation in the house of the Lord! The wall of glass that protects them spans from 12 inches off the floor to 8 feet high, giving them, as much as possible, the sense of being together with the body of Christ. For more information about this ministry to the chemically sensitive please go to www.aromaofchrist.com. You can also read more about our Fragrance Free Zone here.