Weekly Winter Word 12

Jan 17, 2013

Give the Church a Chance

Highlighted SFC Value:  B.R.I.D.G.E.

“Relationships” – We intentionally build up our community, connecting people to the global network of Christian riders and the body of Christ. Romans 13:8

Applicable SFC Brah-verb:   Brahverb #3

If you’re not plugged into a local church or if you’re building relationships without sharing Christ, you’re a bridge to nowhere. The SFC bridge to Jesus and the church is a two-way bridge. Make room for more lanes.

 STORY:

Mindy was from the South, and this girl could COOK! We first met Mindy when she showed up to a Bible study where I was frantically cooking hotdogs and mac n’ cheese before playing music and sharing from the Word. Thankfully, she asked, (with her fun Southern drawl) “Y’all need some help in the kitchen?” She never let me cook again.

Years later, when Mindy moved away, we were kind of freaking out, because no one…and I mean NO ONE wanted to eat what I was cooking. Right around that same time, someone asked me to come and share with the Women’s Bible Study at one of our local churches.

Women’s Bible study is a place where no young man belongs. It is a scary and intimidating place. I nervously stood with nothing prepared and explained how God had called my friends and me, through a series of events, to reach out to the shred kids in our community. And in an attempt to meet the needs of these shred kids, we were serving them through genuine relationships, Bible studies, free wax, coffee and food.

What we learned was that the older ladies in our church were not psyched to go shredding. They thought shredding meant getting rid of old documents. Although, they WERE in fact familiar with the droves of young people smoking weed and hanging around our town all winter. They told me, “We’ve tried a dozen different types of events to reach those kids, but they never come, and now you have 70 of them HERE in the church twice a week?! Can we help?”

In one of those fun God-moments, one thing lead to another and soon we had dozens of ladies on a cooking list for all of our meetings for the entire season. It was a puzzle-piece match made in Heaven.

Their set of skills was different from my set of skills. And my set of skills was not theirs. I had tried my hand at their skills and failed. They tried their hands at mine and failed. But as a community, as a Body, we could serve our community in an AMAZING way that honored God and offered all of us a chance to serve together.

Towards the end of the season, this inked-up dude who would come and hang out at SFC was standing with me outside the church and an older lady walked up and he said, “Oh heeeyyy, Miss G!” And she said, “Heyyy, John, how are you?”

After she left, I said, how do YOU know HER? He said, “She dropped off food that one night and then I saw her in the grocery store last week. She’s cool.”

 Application for SHRED LIFE:

Sometimes, we’re guilty of thinking we have to DO everything ourselves when there are others around us with complimenting gifts and talents, waiting for us to ask.  What’s worse is that sometimes in the Church, we let our differences come between us. Often, we as followers of Jesus, especially those of us “on the front lines” put down the work of the Church. We say judgmental things like, “THEY don’t get it,” or “They’re no help.”

That is an arrogant, unbiblical and offensive way of viewing God’s Church. The Church is the Body of Christ. WE are the Church. If it’s operating poorly, we’re to blame. When we set ourselves against the Body of Christ, we’re setting ourselves up for failure. When we see the beauty of God in each other or when we commit to working together, despite our differences, God moves in a RADICAL way. And the spoils of working together can be…well, delicious!

 Look up these scriptures:  1 Corinthians 12:12-27

ASK: How are you trying to work together with the Body of Christ? What is your place in the Body? What practical way can you serve your church with your complimenting gifts?

SFC USA