My name is David Nolen. I am the Co-founder/Associate Director at Hope Center Indy, and I want to share with you my experience of the first day on campus.
I've always admired my Dad's faith when it comes to following God's path for his life. The core belief that God longs & wants to use His people to do impossible things has propelled him to where he is today. He constantly dreams BIG with a prayer life that matches pound for pound with his big dreams. I've sat in several hours of long prayer sessions with my Dad. Over the years I’ve heard him pouring out his heart to the Lord, interceding for those who are lost, praying for those who are brokenhearted, crying out for a revival, and most importantly just listening & believing God is going to do great and mighty things. Witnessing this faith as his son over the years has been a priceless blessing. It was my joy to carry this experience into Day one at the Hope Center Indy Campus.
After signing the lease agreement, we pulled up to the 25-acre campus together with not many words being said between us. We were both just still in shock. As we pulled up, I remember feeling like Simba from the Lion King when Mufasa says to his son, "Look, Simba, everything the light touches is our kingdom." This 25-acre, 210,000-square foot campus just seemed enormous and never ending! How could anyone manage this entire place?!! All these what ifs and how am I going to, flooded my mind instantly. I must have looked like a man afraid of his shadow staring at this building. If you have ever been overwhelmed with the size of the dream God has for you, then you probably know the look in my eyes. It's the look of "I know I'm not supposed to feel fearful, but I can't help it, God." It's almost like God has a PhD in surprising us with dreams He knows that will make us feel overwhelmed. Just take for example, Habakkuk 1:5. It says "“Look at the nations and watch, and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told." This verse is special to me for many reasons. In 2013, God spoke this verse to me in a season where I had no idea what to do with my life. Then, 3 years go by, and I'm staring at this 25-acre campus with the utter amazement while God is doing something in my days I certainly wouldn't have believed, even if I were told.
Looking over at my Dad, I could see him grinning like he was excited for the challenge. Like he was complimenting God on the interesting journey to this point, realizing this was going to be fun to watch God come through in miraculous ways. My overwhelming feeling went away as I began to feel excitement too. Excited to experience the highs and lows of this next chapter. Excited to begin something new. Excited that we couldn't make this happen without heavy involvement from God. My Dad often quotes Angus Buchan saying, "When men work, men work. But when men pray, God works!"