. . . but it’s a little different to Martin Luther King’s.
I just got back from Young Adult’s Weekend Away. It was an absolutely brilliant weekend!! There were so many laughs and so many great conversations, it was great to get away for a couple of days with friends, growing in God and fellowship. Hopefully, over the next week, I’ll get round to posting some stuff from our bible studies of Malachi – it’s given me a lot to think about and I hope to share it with you. Firstly, though, I want to try to explain something, as much to myself as to you.
For over a year now, God has been teaching me about His heart for the poor and changing my heart for them too. I’ve posted a couple of times about this here and here. He’s also given me a real passion for the Church (yes, I know, you might not always be able to tell!) and to see it be the Church He intended. A true Body of Christ which acts and loves like Christ. I want the Church to get out from behind its walls and into the world and love the poor, the lost and the broken – just as Christ did, and still does, love them. We have to be amongst them, showing them Christ’s love practically and not hypocritically preaching and talking about love on a Sunday then getting on with our comfortable lives. This is the Church I want to see:
“All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper), and to prayer.A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders. And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity — all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.” (Acts 2)
So . . . how can I make this happen? Well, we can’t fix the world until we’ve fixed ourselves. Didn’t Jesus say, in Matthew 7:5, “First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye”. If the church is going to make a difference in our community, firstly we need to fall in love with God because then we will catch on to His dream and run with it. There’ll be no stopping us if we’re consumed by a passion for God. That passion will only come about if we love God, which will only happen if we know Him, which will only happen if we spend time with Him and that will happen when we devote ourselves to prayer. All things should come from the place of prayer. So that’s where we’ll start.
I’ll be leaving in ten months and may never see this develop beyond prayer into action but, strangely, that doesn’t bother me. I want the congregation to catch the dream and run with it. There are already others who have caught it and I think that’s a clear sign that God has plans and this is what He wants. I want this to be sustainable and go beyond me and my efforts.
“Pray like it all depends on God, live like it all depends on us”