A place that was once an eyesore on a deserted Grindstone Parkway has been turned into a thriving ecosystem right in the backyard of The Crossing. Andy Patton* at Flourish Magazine has posted a great article featuring The Crossing’s landscape and lake, highlighting the restoration and redemption over this small inch of God’s creation.
The church had a choice to make about the lake. The easiest and cheapest option was to bulldoze the lake and turn it into a parking lot or a field of grass. But The Crossing chose a labor-intensive, time-consuming, and costly second option—to save it.
“We wanted to go the extra mile and communicate something to our culture: that we Christians can be very productive and constructive in turning around situations that have gone to a bad place,” says Vincent, who has been one of the driving forces behind the vision and implementation of the project.
“When God created the world he created it good…To trample and neglect something God cares about is really a sign that there is something wrong with us,” says Ryan Wampler, a pastor with The Crossing’s campus ministry.
The Dutch reformer Abraham Kuyper said, “There is not one square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: ‘Mine!’” The Crossing—which took the title of its blog, “Every Square Inch” from Kuyper’s words—agrees. To its pastors, the work on the lake is about restoring the particular square inches that God has entrusted to their care. They take it very seriously.
To the question, “Why?” each pastor’s answer invariably begins with Genesis.
“When God created the world he made it good. He cares about it…God put man in creation to be a steward of it and cultivate it back to goodness,” Wampler says. In a similar spirit, Cover says, “Genesis One is spiritual and material…God loves physical creation, and we want to be a church that cares about what God cares for.” The way The Crossing sees it, if there is not one square inch of creation over which Christ does not cry, “Mine!” then there should not be one square inch, including degraded geese ponds, over which the church—speaking with its labor, its teaching, its money, and its life—should not cry, “His!”
* Andy used to be on staff here at Veritas and is now the managing editor of Flourish Online. Check it out daily for new content about responsible stewardship and care of God’s creation.