Today was the big day…Louis and I, along with our photog – Terence Talley, and Bella and Wesley (our 2 dogs) set out for the bus stop to greet our old friends and meet some new ones! In case you missed the original post, check out Missional Sucker. Enjoy the pics. You will note that there are no Reeses Hearts in the pictures. Confession: Louis and I broke into them over the weekend, which meant a quick stop at the store for some Laffy Taffy (always a hit!!!). Don’t judge! :)
What will a Reese’s Cup (heart shaped, of course) and a sucker have to do with being missional? Not a whole lot if you eat them all yourself! But, this Valentine’s Day, I will be heading to the bus stop to greet the neighborhood kids with an afternoon snack and a hug! I’m sure their parents will thank me profusely when they get home after school even more hyped than usual.
Our budget is tighter than it has been in past years. Hope we don’t run out! In past years, I have put little Valentine goodie bags together and had them at the house when some of the kids came by. This year, I’ve decided to go out and meet them at the school bus. Due to a number of reasons…mainly because a number of them moved last summer and we had a year full of family-related health issues (including our own!)…Louis and I have lost contact with a lot of the neighborhood kiddos. Now, we are attempting to get to know the new kids who live around us and this is just one way we are attempting to do that.
Looking forward to Easter…we are also planning our annual Southern Barton Heights Easter Egg Hunt for the neighborhood kids. Can’t wait!!!!
What are you doing for upcoming holidays to meet your neighbors?
The Next Billy Graham Might Be Drunk Right Now is MUST read, yet thankfully a short read, and a powerful reminder for all of us. Yesterday, in the post Neighbor 1: Hurting, we were reminded that anyone who hurting is our neighbor. Today’s read also reminds us that this same hurting person could be the next Billy Graham, Paul, or CS Lewis or just someone that is evangelizing our children in the future. All the more reason to make time for the hurting people in our lives.
This reminds me of the importance of praying the “other” prayer that Jesus taught us to pray. Of course, He taught us to pray the Lord’s Prayer. But, in Luke 10 He also taught us to pray to the “Lord of the harvest”…
2 He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.
At this time, there weren’t many Jesus Followers at all. So, where would the workers come from? That’s right…the Harvest! So, we are called to pray for the Lord of the Harvest to raise up workers….from the harvest. Let’s pray that kind of prayer!!! The author, Russell Moore, leaves us with…
And, be kind to that atheist in front of you on the highway, the one who just shot you an obscene gesture. He might be the one who evangelizes your grandchildren.
In addition, as we find ourselves frustrated with the “church”, we also need to be praying for her. And as one commenter to Moore’s post, Lucy Newnes, stated….
Be kind to that “Christian” sitting in the pew, the one who just slandered the Pastor, and held back his tithing. He might someday be the next Paul, or Billy Graham, or Charles Colson who would evangelize your grandchildren. With God, nothing is impossible. Focus on the Lord and be FAT – Faithful, Available & Teachable.
Lord Jesus, I praise your name! You are awesome! Thanks for teaching us how to pray and modeling it for us. I, humbly, come to you as one whose life was once swirling the drain…and you lifted me up out of it. Thank you for not only saving me from that life, but thanks for giving me the opportunity to glorify your name and serve in your name. Your Word says that the “harvest is plentiful and the laborers are few.” Today, I come to you praying on behalf of the people who don’t know you. Lift them up out of the swirl. Draw them to you. Use us. Use me. May we, filled with your Spirit, do our jobs of planting and watering, and when appropriate…harvest, too. Prepare us to disciple others…disciple making disciples. In the Lord of the Harvest’s name I pray. Amen.
Ever look for ways to be missional or incarnational in your own home? Here’s a way that we like to do it…and just may well become a tradition.
How did you spend New Year’s Day? With friends and family in front of the Rose Parade and a ton of football? New Year’s Day for us was spent with over 40 of our old and new friends and family….from our lineage, our missional community, and our neighbors. We opened our home for a pancake brunch from 10a-2p. Some showed up early and stayed the entire time. Others trickled in. But, we did have a constant stream. And boy was it fun! Miss Marti’s House is now also called Lou-Dawg’s Cafe. Louis is the MAN!
This was just one way Louis and I serve our friends, community and family. It’s fun to watch our worlds collide…friends from different parts of our life blending together in one place. I love it. Although we didn’t go to the church building that particular morning, we DID have church….Acts 2 style…check out Acts 2:42-47. We had a chance to pray with some of our ‘extended family’. We talked about how God was working in our lives. And…we broke bread…I mean pancakes…together. It was awesome.
It was so simple that virtually anyone could do it. Paper plates. Plastic forks. Juice. Coffee (of course!). Syrup and butter. Louis set up 2 griddles and a HUGE mix of his best-ever pancakes….and made them to order as people arrived. I made 2 huge delish egg, turkey sausage and cheese casseroles, which stayed warm in the oven. We also cut up fruit in wedges. Friends brought fruit salad, more apples, bacon and other goodies to add to the meal.
And we played….wii….and a lot of it! Enjoy the pics taken early in the day by our friend, our ‘son’ and up-and-coming photog – Terence Talley.
Please note that I am not advocating that you skip church a lot because being in community with believers is so important. But, sometimes…it’s ok. Let’s free ourselves from the legalistic views that we have sometimes. I go to church because I LOVE to worship the Lord with others. But, sometimes I just gotta spend time BEING the church…not just DOING it. :)
I first posted on this on Miss Marti’s House…and have decided to move this series here. My intention was to post daily, but I was a little overzealous. Now, I am going to try it again, but do it on a weekly basis – each Wednesday. Here we go again…
While attending the CCDA Immersion training in April, 2011, we had the opportunity to spend time with Wayne “Coach” Gordon, author of who is my neighbor? This is an important question that we need to ask ourselves in light of what Jesus shares with us in Luke 10 ~ love God. love your neighbor as yourself. But, how do we define ‘neighbor’? The people who live next door to us? on the block? down the street? While studying the story of the Good Samaritan, you learn who Jesus says is your neighbor. This book helps define that. I started reading it, and realized that it will be best read one chapter at a time.
Weekly, I’m going to start read it….meditate on it…..thinking about a chapter a week. I plan to post my thoughts each Wednesday. I hope I can stick with it this time!
Wanna join me? Get yourself a copy and join me in the conversation. Let me know if you do!
In the mean time…let’s take another look at Luke 10 (NIV)…The Parable of the Good Samaritan
25 On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
26 “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
27 He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
28 “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
29 But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’
36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”
37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”
Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
OUCH! That kinda stings….