Clarity in Chaos

When COVID hit the scene, I began writing a Word of Encouragement. It was a way for me to stay connected and encourage the partners, guests, and friends of Grace Bible Church while in lockdown. When GBC opened back up, I continued to write weekly emails and posts.

I enjoy writing. I also enjoy the feedback from those who have gained something from my efforts. I will continue to write, but I am postponing the weekly Word of Encouragement until January so I can put more energy into pursuing the development of the International Welcome Center.

God has given me a burden and placed a passion in my heart to see the IWC become a light for our Lord and a force for good in our community. I cannot carry this burden or flesh out this passion and continue to write a Word of Encouragement. Time simply will not permit it, but it is more than just a time issue.

I started writing a Word of Encouragement to strengthen people during a difficult season. I pray that happened. I will continue to build up the body of Christ through my preaching, writing, attitude, and lifestyle; but part of what God has called me to do through the IWC is to motivate people to respond to a great need.

As I think about the purpose of the IWC, I am reminded of all the evils it pushes against: racism, inequality, xenophobia, illegal immigration, poverty, selfishness and ignorance. Many of these evils are the monsters taking swipes at our nation’s moral compass.

The IWC provides an opportunity for local people (me and you) to confront national evils. It gives us the chance to be a part of the solution instead of just being frustrated about all the problems. It opens doors for individuals to impact their neighbors and overcome darkness with the love, compassion, and courage of Christ. It builds bridges so the hope of the Gospel can be shared.

Few organizations provide you with an opportunity to impact society on an individual, local, and national level; but the IWC does. Few organizations will allow you to build God’s kingdom, make your city a better place, help a wounded family start over, and personally follow Christ; but the IWC does. When you and I support the IWC,…

  • It allows us to put to flesh the ancient command to “not mistreat the foreigner who resides among you” and “to love them as yourself.” (Leviticus 19:33-34)
  • It provides a relevant opportunity to “love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31)
  • We fulfill Jesus’ words when he said, “I was stranger and you invited me in.” (Matthew 25:35)

You and I have before us the opportunity to live out the teachings of both the Old and New Testaments in a world that is embracing the idea that God is distant. That He is not speaking. That He does not care. We can prove them wrong. We can show them the relevancy and power of following the teachings of the Bible. Who knows what would happen locally and nationally if a group of Christ followers said, 

  • “I will push back against racism with kindness to someone whose skin color is not my own.”
  • “I will take steps to close the inequality gap by advocating for those looking for an opportunity to pursue more.”
  • “I will prove I am not xenophobic by becoming the friend of a foreigner.”
  • “I will become a part of the solution in immigration issue by helping someone become a citizen.”
  • “I will stand against poverty by being generous.”
  • “I will starve my own selfishness by taking an interest in others.”
  • “I will listen, learn and love so ignorance does not lead me.”

We don’t have to be swept away by the chaos and confusion of our times. We don’t have to be be suspicious, confused, or frustrated with the foreigners, neighbors, and strangers among us. We can be a part of something God is doing.

The IWC needs $425,000 to build an office and classrooms. For the next 3 months I will be using the time and energy I spent writing a Word of Encouragement to follow God in meeting this need. My hope is that you will support me and join me in this effort.

Here are 2 things you can do right now:

  • Pray for God to provide donors for the IWC.
  • Register to watch “Home for the Holidays” – a virtual fundraising event for the IWC

I will be sharing more with you as the weeks unfold. Native Tongue by Switchfoot helps me remember the importance of the IWC.

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