Urban ministry is not for the faint of heart.
In the last several months I’ve been confronted by a group of angry drunk men, yelled at by a Christ hater and exposed to disease, all for sharing the love of God.
Some say I’m being irresponsible, selfish or stupid for putting myself in harms way. I get it, who wants to meet maiming or death prematurely. Surely not I.
I love my family, friends and the life God has given me. Everyday I greet the rising sun with joy and expectation.
Love That Defies
However, please don’t misconstrue my willingness to walk into danger as courage. I am not a courageous man. I prefer peace to danger, tranquility to violence and comfort to uncertainty.
Like anyone else, I battle fear and doubt.
But there is one thing that defies the fear in me – God’s love.
God loved me so much that he purchased me by the blood of His Son, Christ Jesus, who endured ridicule, mocking, flogging and crucifixion for me; an unworthy wretched man.
I was formerly a slave of the devil but now I am a slave of Christ.
I have no right to dictate to Him the limits of my obedience. Did John Huss, William Tyndale, Martin Luther or Dietrich Bonhoeffer?
No, they patiently endured the flames of opposition, knowing that if our early home is destroyed we have a building from God not made with hands, eternal in the heavens (2 Corinthians 5:1).
With God All Things Are Possible
I have been transformed by the grace of God. One moment I was a carousing mischievous young man and the next, a humbled child of God.
When I walk the streets and see someone with a menacing appearance the first thing I think of is the power of God to change a life.
I begin to pray while I walk toward them, “God this person is an opportunity to bring you glory. You alone posses the power and prerogative to pour out your grace and mercy upon this soul. Lord, I implore you to call them out of darkness into your marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9).
God Working Both To Will And To Do
I am not a courageous man, I am an obedient man; called by the King of Kings, Lord of Lords to humbly serve Him.
Therefore, I rely on His strength and wisdom both to will and to do in me for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).
As Christians, this is our call.