Antioch Is So Dark, So Big
An ebony darkness has flooded Southeastern Davidson County, convincing our neighbors that God in general and churches in particular are both irrelevant and unnecessary. People starving for life can’t find it in the darkness, so we will shine a light of healing and hope in the inky blackness. We will shine Jesus’ love upon our neighbors through Car Care, Cultivation Nights when we go out and pray with and for them, Board Game Nights when we get together for fun and community, and other fun moments like our upcoming Weenie Roast.
We will share the love of Jesus by meeting the needs of our neighbors. But there are so many people, and we seem to touch so few. At our last Car Care, we only had one single mother attend from outside of our church, and at our last Board Game Night, there were only two guests. Southeastern Davidson County is so big, and our church and the reach of our church are so small.
Chuck Swindoll shared this parable in one of his many books. One night an ocean storm rocked a stretch of beach; the angry waves cast up clumps of sea weed and chunks of driftwood. And scattered among it all were countless star fish that littered the shore. When the heat of the early morning sun hit those star fish, they would die.
A man walked the beach as the first rays of the sun filtered past the receding night. He was stunned by the number of star fish that soon would perish. As he walked, he saw a small boy coming from the other end of the beach. As he picked his way through the ocean’s cast offs, the lad bent down and threw a star fish back into the sea, saving its life.
When the two travelers met, the man said to the boy, “What you are doing is so noble but pointless. There are too many to save; you can’t save them all.”
Whereupon the boy bent down, grabbed another star fish, tossed it into the sea and said, “Maybe not. But I sure saved that one.”
The Apostle Paul wrote, So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up. Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone, Galatians 6:9-10, NLT.
TO OUR WARRIORS IN THE SUNDAY SCHOOL and the People They Teach
Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” After laying His hands on them, He departed from there, Matthew 19:14-15.
For some years now, we have imported our children from a local trailer park. There was a time when the 15 passenger van had 16 or 17 children on it. However, those children have grown up, and times have changed in that trailer park. Over the last eight Sundays, we have had an average of 5 children in our Sunday School. One Sunday, the van was empty.
Please pray for our children’s department. Pray for the teachers, that they will not lose heart. Pray for Roger Pratt who faithfully reaches out to that trailer park. Most of all, pray that the One who multiplied a handful of bread and fish in a small boy’s sack lunch in order to feed 15,000 people will multiply the children in our church. Ask Him to call out kids in that trailer park. Ask Him to send to our church parents with children. Truth be told, most children want to come to Jesus; it is usually the parents whose hearts need to be melted by the Spirit.
Van ministries are an important outreach to an unchurched community. However, the key to a stable children’s department is to have parents come to the adult classes while their children come to the kids classes. People of God, pray for that to happen.