He executes justice for the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free, the LORD gives sight to the blind, he lifts up those who are bowed down, the LORD loves those who live justly. The LORD watches over the immigrant and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. -Psalm 146:7-9

Sunday, May 4, 2008

By way of reminder

I have decided that every sunday after I have sat down and planned my menu, errands and other things to do for the week, that I will read a chapter out of the CCDA handbook to remind myself why Kevin and I are doing what we are doing.. Sunday services this morning were very convicting as we heard a sermon on one of the hinderances to holiness which was... COMPLAINING...(phil 2:14-15) reminding myself why we are here is so good for me and my complaining attitude.. Being able to remind myself that my life is to be offered up as a living sacrifice to my husband and my neighbors leave no room for selfishness.(Romans 12:1-2) Because of the mercy that the LORD has shown me I am able through Christ to live and give that mercy to others.
God is so good, I just cant even say it enough and the words themselves do no justice to explain this HOLY, Just, Forgiving, Merciful, Sovereign, willing to SUFFER for Us God we serve.. I can honestly say, again, and again, I am so glad and encouraged that the LORD laid it upon my husband's heart for us to be here and I am so glad that the LORD gave me grace to not go against him but to embrace through Christ Jesus the good works, which God prepared beforehand.

Here's to a refreshing week

Relocation: Living Among the People

Living out the gospel means desiring for one's neighbor and neighbor's family that which one desires for one's self and family. Living out the gospel means bettering the quality of other people's lives spiritually, physically, socially, and emotionally as one betters one's own. Living out the gospel means sharing in the suffering and pain of others.

How did Jesus love? "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth." (Jn 1:14) Jesus relocated. He became one of us. He didn't commute back and forth to heaven. Similarly, the most effective messenger of the gospel to the poor will also live among the poor that God has called the person to. A key phrase to understand relocation is incarnational ministry.

By relocating, a person will understand most clearly the real problems facing the poor; and then he or she may begin to look for real solutions. For example, if a person ministering in a poor community has children, one can be sure that person will do whatever possible to ensure that the children of the community get a good education. Relocation transforms "you, them, and theirs" to "we, us, and ours." Effective ministries plant and build communities of believers that have a personal stake in the development of their neighborhoods.

Relocation is community based in the very essence of the word. There are three kinds of people who live in the community. First "relocators" are people who, like the project director, were not born in the inner city but moved into the neighborhood. Second, are the "returners." These are the people born and raised in their community and then left for a better life. Usually they return from college or the military. They are no longer trapped by the surrounding poverty of their neighborhood. Yet, they choose to return and live in the community they once tried to escape. Lastly are the "remainers." These are the ones that could have fled the problems of the inner city but chose to stay and be part of the solution to the problems surrounding them.