NOTE: This is the 100th issue of [Subversive Underground]. I can't believe how this e-newsletter has grown. Watch for an exciting announcement in the next few weeks regarding a special offer only available to you, my faithful subscribers. Until then, on with this week's article…and thanks for reading. - kg
BRING IT TO ME
By Keith Giles
Last week I wrote about how overwhelmed I felt when considering my lack of resources available to adequately minister to prostitutes here in Orange County. While I see the need to reach out and express the compassion of Jesus to these young girls, I am paralyzed by my lack of real, substantial ability to provide counseling, shelter, or drug and alcohol treatment for them. I can see the incredible level of need here, but I am overcome by my own weakness.
Last Sunday at house church, God really spoke to me through several of our "Mission" family members regarding this. "Maybe all they need from us is a hug, or a few dollars for food? We can do that," said Liz. "It's really about being faithful in the mundane, everyday things that matters," said Leigh. "I think just being willing to step out and make ourselves available to God is what matters most," said Marlys.
One by one people around the circle began to encourage one another, and me, about how we simply need to obediently step forward and allow God to minister through us as necessary.
Slowly I started to see what God was doing. It was right in front of me all along, actually. As everyone continued to share I realized that this was exactly what God had been showing me for years now. Real ministry takes place outside our comfort zones. When we step out in our weakness we discover God's power because His power is made perfect in weakness. Slowly but surely I started to understand what God's heart was for me in this situation.
Last week, after I wrote the article about feeling overwhelmed by my lack of resources ("Mary's Prayer"), I attended an event in Torrance, California where the speaker shared a passage from Matthew chapter 14 and nailed me in my seat. The passage he read involved the feeding of the five thousand. When the Disciples saw the mulititudes were hungry they asked Jesus to send the people away. Jesus responded by asking them to feed the people, knowing full well that they did not have the resources necessary to do so. Next he asked the disciples to show him what they had, and although it wasn't nearly enough to feed five thousand hungry people, he instructed them to do one simple thing- "Bring it to me".
As I read that passage I could clearly see the parrallels to my own situation. I could see that there were girls trapped in a lifestyle of prostitution. I could see that my resources were impossibly weak. But Jesus was asking me to look at what I do have; Hands, feet, time, prayers, a smile, a few dollars, and a willing heart. He's asking me to give these meager resources to Him.
"Ordering the people to sit down on the grass, He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up toward heaven, He blessed the food, and breaking the loaves He gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds." - Matthew 14:19
Jesus took what little the disciples gave to him and he blessed it. He broke it, and he gave it back to the disciples so that they could feed the people.
For me this means we need to take the first simple, basic step of going out to the streets where these girls are and finding ways to simply bless them and pray for them and demonstrate the love and compassion of Jesus to them. If we give it to Jesus, he will bless it and give it back to us so that we can provide what these girls really hunger for inside.
As our group continued to talk about this last Sunday, and as we prayed together about taking these first tentative steps toward serving these girls, I realized that all God was calling me to do was to go out there and be an ambassador of Christ to these girls.
What upset me early on in my discovery of this mission field was the total lack of Christian presence in this dark place. "Wouldn't Jesus be out here with these girls?" I asked. Yes, he would. And if we go out there and make ourselves available to them, as the hands and feet, and face and smile of Jesus, at least there will be a representative of The Body of Christ in that place. At least then no one could look at this mission field and lament the lack of servants willing to stand in the darkness and hold up their small flame of faith.
So, we will go out. We will take those first small steps of faith. We will at least give to Jesus what little we have, and admittedly it is very little, and we will wait to see what he does with it. We may not see a large number of conversions from this. We may not ever see a single girl turn from this lifestyle and escape this darkness. But the simple act of obedience to go and to serve and to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth is reward enough.
MORE ARTICLES BY KEITH GILES:
*"Judge Not" at TheOoze.com
*"Better Than Me" at Ginkworld.net
CHRISTIANITY'S IMAGE PROBLEM (Time Magazine Feature):
(From the article)
"Kinnaman says non-Christians' biggest complaints about the faith are not immediately theological: Jesus and the Bible get relatively good marks. Rather, he sees resentment as focused on perceived Christian attitudes. Nine out of ten outsiders found Christians too "anti-homosexual," and nearly as many perceived it as "hypocritical" and "judgmental." Seventy-five percent found it "too involved in politics."
(More in link above)
House Church Resource Online:
This web site is a service to the explosive house church/organic church movement throughout the world. Today, over 112 million Christians worldwide do not attend a traditional church. Every year, one million Christians leave the institutional church in the United States. Presently, the number of adult Christians meeting in house church/organic churches in the USA is five million. This number is growing by the day. That is where this site comes in.
DO SOMETHINGhttp://www.just4one.org/My friend Greg Russinger is one of the co-founders of this new non-profit dedicated to fighting poverty, exposing human trafficking and assisting orphans around the globe.Don't just sit there. Get involved now.You CAN make a difference!