“I figured that that building would be big enough until Jesus came,” Harlow said. “It held around 200 people, and I was so proud of it.”
But that wasn’t the case. After seven years, the church was completely packed every Sunday.
“I told people that it was crazy, but the shoe was determining the size of the foot,” he said. “If God needed more room to work, then we needed to give it to him.”
So in 1984, the church added on a 500-seat auditorium and started hiring associate pastors.
“I thought this has to be big enough,” Harlow said. “I’d never been a part of a church that size, so I never dreamed it would get bigger than that.”
But it did get bigger. As attendance kept climbing, they added a second worship service on Sunday morning, and another Saturday night. By 1999, around 900 people were crowding into the auditorium every weekend.
Even before then, however, Harlow said he knew the church would need to expand again. He said he knew God wanted the church to build a new worship center on a piece of prime farm ground at the corner of Ind. 26 and U.S. 31.
For four years, Harlow said he drove past the property everyday and prayed over the land. He changed his daily driving routes to make sure he’d pass it.
“I tried to always hit the light at the corner when it was red so I’d have a little more praying time,” he said.
Sure enough, in 2000, the church purchased 115 acres just where Harlow said he knew God wanted the new sanctuary.
In 2003, Harlow preached his first sermon from the new facility, which the congregation decided to rename Crossroads Community Church and drop its Baptist affiliation.
That first year, attendance skyrocketed to 1,700, and the congregation has grown ever since to over 2,000 every weekend.