Love Reading

I have recently began to read two books that share a similar theme, “love.” Now before you think I am reading one of “those” books, let me tell you that the love that these books are talking about is love for Jesus and how it should compel us to live.

The first book is “Compelled by Love” by Ed Stetzer and Philip Nation. The subtitle of the book is “the most excellent way of missional living.” This book is very christo-centered and reads like one of my textbooks from seminary. It is very well written but extremely scholarly.

The second book that I am reading is “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan. Chan’s book is not as scholarly written as Stetzer’s but nevertheless the theme of the book is very similar.

I think it is not a coincidence that both of these authors are writting on a similar subject that the church needs to hear. We need to fall deeper in love in Jesus and allow him to change our lives so that the lives we live better reflect him living through us. Our world is sick and tired of the church telling people that Jesus loves them and that he can make a difference in their life and then not living our lives like he has made a difference for us! The statistics bear this out: Christians are just as likely to get a divorce, cheat on their wives, look and become addicted to porn! Church we need to start living like their is something different about us or we lose our message to preach to the world.

I am excited to be challenged by these books and also to be convicted by them as well.

God, I pray that I will fall deeper and deeper in love with you and that my life will reflect a change that you have made and continue to make in me as I live for you. Amen

Becoming Multi-cultural

A few years ago, I heard Erwin McManus speak at Catalyst about how the church can become more multi-cultural. He said that it starts with people reaching out and making friends with people who are not of the same culture and race as themselves. At the time, I agreed with his statement and vowed to put it into practice when given the chance. That time has now come!

I am a homeowner now which means that I live in a neighborhood with other people. As I am discovering my new neighbors do not all look like me. This is a tremendous blessing and an opportunity. For most of my life, I have lived with and around people who look like me. Now for the first time, I live in a city and an area where many of the people around me do not look just like me. Yesterday, I met two of my neighbors: Erica is a nurse and her husband Brandon is a cop and they are African American. Sydney is my other neighbor and he is African American. Looking across our street I see another neighbor who is also African American. I find myself for the first time as a minority and I am happy to be so. I must force myself to make relationships with my neighbors because my Lord Jesus ask me to! The church can only truly be a reflection of Jesus when it is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural. If the church is going to be the hope of the world, and look past race and nationality to bring all people together under the lordship of Jesus Christ, then we who are apart of it must not be afraid of what it could look like. Amen.

Question for my readers: how is your church seeking to become more multi-cultural? How are you becoming more multi-cultural?