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Following the Lord…

…to MasterWorks’ New Home, Cedarville University

Dr. Kavanaugh gives us a behind the scenes look at our move to Cedarville University.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go.” – Ps. 32:8

When God makes a promise – such as the one found in the above scripture – He means it!  I have been hanging on to this and many other promises of God for the past two months.  Within a few weeks from the end of this summer’s MasterWorks Festival, I found myself in two very difficult situations:

  1. My dear wife, Barbara, went through two very serious surgeries, and…
  2. I was suddenly informed that Grace College was making major changes that would mean relocating our festival, immediately. Whoa!DSC_0854

Since then, God has moved mightily on our behalf and both of the above problems have been positively resolved. Barbara is now doing much doing and is home recovering.  I’ll let her tell that amazing story in a future blog. Today, I want to show how the Lord brought us to choose Cedarville University.

To begin with, I have always found that the Lord uses God-ordained authority to direct us. In the case, that authority is our ministry’s Board of Directors, containing some of the most Godly men and women I have ever met. Their level of dedication to Christ is a constant inspiration to me. So as soon as I found out that we had to move, I immediately contacted our Board, and they started moving in high gear – both in fervent prayer and in hours of positive meeting together.

To give me direction in the college search, the Board devised a three-fold criteria that must be found. Whichever college we finally would choose, it had to line up with our ministry in three important aspects:

  1. Faith – We felt strongly about working with a college of like-minded Christians.
  2. Facilities – The college needed to have excellent facilities for all we do at MasterWorks.
  3. Finances – We needed to be given a generous financial package from the college, or we would be unable to continue at the level we had risen to over the past 19 years.

DSC_0970Many friends suggested a large number of fine schools to us, and we made a lot of calls and a lot of visits. Yet we kept coming up with “2 out of 3” of our criteria. None of the colleges I first talked to satisfied all of the three above categories. At the same time, we had a sense of urgency: that we had to find something very soon if we were to have a festival in the summer of 2016.

In one of the many Board meetings of this busy time, a certain Board members mentioned a number of previously-unknown factors that could point us to Cedarville University. As we began checking these out, all three of the critical points began lining up: We were impressed that the people there were very serious about their faith in Christ, and that they had marvelous facilities. When they gave us generous terms as well, we knew that God was pointing us in the right direction.

Dozens of emails, call, and visits happened within the month. Our Board prayed with great faith and carefully asked all the right questions. Likewise, our office staff worked very diligently to check out every possible aspect of moving the festival to Ohio. Finally, with the Board’s approval and blessing, I signed the contract with Cedarville University yesterday morning. The 20th Anniversary of the MasterWorks Festival will take place there next summer, and we hope to be at Cedarville for many years to come.

In less than two months, we went from having no possibilities before us to having an excellent, signed contract. It is truly a miracle of divine leading, and we give Him all the glory!  See you at MasterWorks 2016 in Cedarville!

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