Tuesday, March 15, 2016

March Night: I Would Let You Die

A group that I serve from our local church had the opportunity to go and serve the people of OKC again last week. It's always a privilege to serve others. Especially when you know you're meeting the real life needs of others. Even the most basic of needs of food, water, clothing make a difference in the lives of others.

The reality is that the people that we serve, those that we help, they can go anywhere and get food. There are fine people that work at Rescue Missions, Jesus Houses, government agencies and food kitchens that can make themselves available to help others. But there is a difference in government agencies and the local church. There is something that we can give that the government agency can not.

The Gospel.

The life saving, bread giving, thirst quenching message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The message that God saves sinners. And anytime you're dealing with a human being, you're dealing with a sinner.

So when Christians have the opportunity to go and serve others, and in this case, serve those that are extremely less fortunate and most of them actually homeless and car-less, you better be jumping at the chance to take action. The bad news is when you DON'T jump at the chance help serve others.

Jesus said "Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me."

Did you see that? If you don't do it for those around you and those who are in need, then it's just as if you're not doing it for Jesus Himself.

So whats the solution? Just be a Christian. Because serving others IS what Christianity is all about. The greatest need in the world today is for Christians to live like Christians. Nothing more, nothing less. And here's what's exciting. It's not guess work. It's not about trying hard. It's not about being religious. God gives us a very clear picture of what He wants for our lives in Romans 12. Once we understand that chapter and how it correlates to our own lives, then we'll understand the big picture, that of serving others.

We can give people what they need. We can house them. Feed them. Cloth them. But its the Gospel that is important. That's the one thing that we can give them that government agencies can't.

That's why Christians should jump at the chance to serve others.

My prayer is that others will get involved with their own local church ministry teams of service.

You wanna see a changed world? It starts with us, Christian.

Get up. Get out. Share your faith.

Time is, oh, such a precious commodity. A very precious commodity.

"Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away."  ~James 4:14

James 4:14 is reality and not a game. Do not forget that.

It's the ONLY reason why we're here.


Monday, March 14, 2016

Febuary Night: No Strings Attached

I'm thankful to be a part of a church that has the desire to serve other people. I've always believed that real Christianity is characterized by our service to other people. 

 I think about Isaiah 58 where it reads:
    "Is it not to share your bread with the hungry
and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh?' (Isaiah 58:7 ESV)


 That whole section, specifically vs. 6-14, talks about several different things that are types of service we are to do for others. 

  • Loose chains of injustice
  • Share food with the hungry
  • Provide the poor wanderer with shelter
  • Clothe the naked
  • Not turn away from your own flesh and blood

 However, our service to others shouldn't be just doing religious things so that we can look good in the eyes of God. It's about denying ourselves and in a way, washing the feet, the dirty, nasty feet of the one who hasn't in days, weeks, or even months. I know one things for sure; it takes a lot of humility to do such a thing. Let's go back to Isaiah for a moment.

   Is such the fast that I choose,
a day for a person to humble himself? Is it to bow down his head like a reed,
and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the LORD? (Isaiah 58:5 ESV)


Service to others is a wonderful way to spend a Monday night. Sure it cuts into my time, which even that statement itself is a statement of arrogance because everything I have, including what might be precious time to me, belongs to God anyway. 

Isaiah 58 has really impressed on me that true Christianity is evidenced, not by good words but by good deeds. James echoed this when he wrote: 

 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. 

    (James 1:27)

True service goes beyond mere physical needs and also cares for the person’s eternal soul. That's the only reason why we're here as Christians. This is a very important point. One day when Peter and John were going to the temple for their habitual afternoon prayer time, they met a man who had been crippled from birth. He had loving friends who carried him to the temple courts so that he could beg for money. God-fearing Jews would have happily helped this man financially, since God’s law taught that they should care for the poor.

However, on this day, neither Peter nor John had any money to help this poor man. Did they just sigh and keep walking? No, they stopped and healed him, in the name of Jesus. They then used this opportunity to share their Messiah with all who would listen.
James tells us,
"If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead." (James 2:15-17)
If we merely share the gospel with people, never taking time to help them with their physical needs, we are wrong. If we merely help them with their physical needs, however, never taking time to help them with their eternal sin condition, we are also wrong. I think this principle will help us as we choose to partner with various relief organizations. We need to ask, “Will I be helping both this person’s physical and spiritual needs?”

It's a blessed time to be able to stand on a box and share the Gospel via the open air to all who hears on these nights. Our goal is to feed their belly, plant the seed of the Gospel and let God bring the increase. 

My apologies as this video went blurry on me however the message of this Gospel is still the same.

January Night: Perspective of Perfection

Another time had come upon us for go into the streets of our great city and proclaim the Gospel to all who would hear. On this night, I was privileged to have several conversations with people. I was also able to stand atop my box and proclaim Gods truths. This is the video of that portion.

Stomachs were fed. Gospel was given. Our prayer is that it doesn't fall on deaf ears and fruit comes from it.