Hopelessness & Hope

Hopelessness & hope. That’s what I felt on yesterday’s prayer walk. After passing the corner gas station & chatting with the guys who gather there, I came across an old church building. I’d seen these broken down buildings before, but this time my heart was gripped – gripped by both hopelessness & hope.

Hopelessness. Apparently a group of faithful Christians gathered in these buildings, perhaps for many years. Judging by the service times listed they met frequently. They covered their buildings with Bible texts.  They even operated a soup kitchen & book store. But now these  buildings are lonely, boarded up & falling down.  Did those people really have any impact? Did they really make a difference? And how in the world could we of all people ever expect to  have an impact & make a difference? What a pipe dream!

Hope! As I stood there thinking about all that I was looking at, I was also filled with a sense of hope. Hope, because no doubt many were gathered to Jesus through that ministry. Hope, because those texts of Scripture have been planting silent seeds of life, awaiting the warmth of a fresh movement of God’s Spirit. Hope, because God brings life out of death. Hope, because God has a people for His Name whom He will call to Himself.  Hope, because the church is not a building or time, but the people of God empowered by the Spirit of God to invade all of life to show & tell the Son of God.

On a related note I recently came across a great article that deals with another part of our area, “Detroit, Community Resilience, & the American Dream.” (Warning: you’ll probably want to move to our great city after reading this article!) We long to be a church composed of all kinds of rescued people – from drug dealers & prostitutes, to young professionals & students, to long term “church goers” who have embraced a false gospel & not the  Biblical gospel.

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