Friday, September 28, 2007

When I first started writing this blog, and first began with the Ministry of Broken Hearts, I posted a quote from a Bethany Dillon song that had influenced my decions and desires greatly in this process. “You sit at the table with the wounded and the poor. You laugh and share stories with the thief and the whore…”

There was something so powerful about that to me, that exemplified how Jesus lived, who he came for, who he associated with, and how he would have been able to befriend anyone who wanted to know him or needed him. He did not just preach, he shared his time and his life and showed people that he cared for them specifically. Yet this picture seemed so far from my own life. How many friends did I have that were not Christians? Maybe a handful. And how many were leading really terrible lives? Less. What relation did I have to this picture, how could I ever be that type of person, even as inspiring as it was. But it is what drove me each week, and I would listen to the song in preparation.

Reflecting on last night, as well as many other evenings in Hollywood…it appears that somewhere along the line, in just a few short months, that God made me into that type of person. I don’t know how…prayer and dependence played a part for sure…but I give credit to the Holy Spirit. I don’t like street evangelism, or being out of my comfort zone, or even staying up late. And yet, here I am talking to people about Jesus on the street by my own choice, giving up my own comfort, and befriending the types of people I would never have expected to meet.

Last night I didn’t have much deep discussion with anyone. But I got to hang out, laugh, and enjoy the company of so many fun people. We met a new friend on the street with whom we all shared stories with of crazy stuff we did as kids, and what kinds of movies and music we like, and laughed as he told us many of his stories. He even asked for our cell phone numbers and asked one of us to call him the next day, just because he enjoyed hanging out with us, even though he’s got tons of friends on the street.

After bible study I was grouped up with a guy that one of our team members befriended long ago and they have been very close ever since. He’s incredibly warm and funny and thoughtful, and we sat on the sidewalk talking about everything from the bible and forgiveness to text messaging and stories from the past. I sat at my desk laughing this morning, recalling his humorous retelling of how he sprained his ankle recently, which was probably one of the funniest things I’ve heard since being down there.

Yet this is not a one-time occurance…this happens fairly frequently, when we get time between serious discussions to just hang out and laugh and share stories and get to know each other. And that’s what struck me recently listening to that song again. I don’t know when it happened, but somewhere in these last few months I got comfortable with “the wounded and the poor” and sharing stories and fellowship with “the thieves and the whores”. It doesn’t seem like a stretch any more to have these types of relationships, to share my life with people so incredibly different from me. But I enjoy it, I get to learn from them as well, I get to find peace from my worries and joy in their humor and distraction from my miniscule problems when I’m down there. I have the exciting opportunity to invest in their lives, make them smile, listen to them and be an extension of Jesus Christ each week. And I know this has nothing to do with me, it is entirely God working through me - through my hands and feet and mouth and heart. That is why this is so exciting to me - I know i am not capable of this on my own, this story is only exciting because God is doing what he does best, and transforming me to be used by Him for his purposes. And I believe he can do the same with the people we meet.

1 comment:

Cynthe said...

As always, I am so blessed by your reflections. It makes ME excited not only seeing how God is transforming you, but seeing that in the process, He is also using you, as you said, to be His hands and feet to a very neglected group of people in this society. My prayers are with you and your entire team as you continue to invest your "moments" - which is what they in truth are - with those broken by sin. May His power surge through you with an overabundance of love and grace and compassion, and may His Spirit transform the lives of those you touch. - Cynthe