Back to blog writing…
After having a week of stresses big and small, good and bad, (a term paper, struggling families, a new nephew, needing a new roof, etc.) I suffered my greatest wound receiving an eight word email that cut me to the quick and took me days to get over.
I am encouraged however when I hear people at my church quietly doing things that make a difference. I think Jesus means what he says in Matthew 25: 40, “whatever you have done to the least of these, you have done to me.” It cheered me up to learn this week that.
- a person at my church paid Jesus’ rent (hundreds of dollars) out of his own pocket – just because he (a coworker) needed help.
- more than one member of my congregation serve as foster parents to Jesus in the form of troubled kids – some of whom have never known a functional family until now.
- one friend at church had Jesus for a sleep-over this week, because he had nowhere else to go.
- Teens from TRUTH (Tintern’s teen group) fed Jesus breakfast this week and some others fed him supper late Thursday night.
What fills me with hope isn’t just that people are serving Jesus, we are now partnering with others who are serving Jesus too. Two people at our church have gone from helping people in need to partnering with people who used to be in need to help others in need. We used to buy groceries for one family. Now we working with that family to find other ways to help the poor here in Beamsville.
In my homework this week I read Stanely Grenz (Theology for the Community of God) and he wrote,
The character of God is best described by the term, “love.” Love characterizes God even apart from the world. Throughout eternity God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit – the community of love. More specifically, the dynamic of the Trinity is the love shared between the Father and the Son, which is the Holy Spirit…. To be the people in covenant with God [the church] who serve as a sign of the kingdom means to reflect the very character of God. (p. 483)
The church mirrors the community of love as much as possible in the midst of the brokenness of the world. We aren’t the church because our answers to the world’s problems are best, or even because our answers are more correct. We are the church because we love and suffer and are willing to be wounded as Jesus was, for the benefit of the world and the glory of God.
We share the gospel more effectively and more authentically when we make Jesus look glorious and, “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.” (adapted from John Piper)