Monday, December 22, 2008
Justice for All
The guys at work and I have been reading through this book, With Justice for All by John Perkins. It's essentially about community development and living out the Gospel of Christ in our immediate communities...and challenging the Body to live in the midst of the desolation of our country, not just to look at it from the outside, in. Anyway, he's got some pretty powerful words and has really inspired me to be unafraid of the neighborhood that surrounds me and to look at my neighbors as simply human, like me.
What's really been intriguing for me though, is this idea that the Church has a call to the world. That we as the Church are called by Christ to work toward reconciliation and healing....we should not be relying on government or just good people. We are called as the Body to get our hands and feet dirty loving, feeding and clothing people. And we've got to turn our dreams and ideals into actual progress, sweat and hard work. For so long, I’ve been a dreamer. I mean that will never change, but I’ve only dreamed of ideas for reaching out to people and haven't really had any clue how to do it. And maybe I’ll never know exactly the most practical, realistic way to do anything for God's children. but, I know that when I wake up in the morning, I’m gonna go unlock the gate and walk to the train station down the street....and I’m going to smile at people and talk to them.....and maybe the next day see the same people and eventually maybe I’ll know someone well enough to invite them over for supper. and we'll share a meal together....ya know? It's just gotta start somewhere. Anyway, the following quote is by Howard Snyder, and Perkins quotes him in the book.....I think he's got a point. Read it through a couple times and really think about what that means for you personally. It's good stuff.
"Reconciliation with God must be demonstrated by genuine reconciliation within the Christian community and by a continuing ministry of reconciliation in the world. This means that in each local Christian assembly, reconciliation must be more than a theory and more than an invisible spiritual transaction. Reconciliation must be real and visible. Racial and economic exploitation and all forms of elitism must be challenged biblically. Unholy divisions of the body of Christ must be seen as sin and worldliness."
-Britani, CSM Los Angeles Fall 2009 City Host