Would The Church Rise?

6 12 2009

I had the chance to meet Marty Bowers recently. He is a homeless man making his way from northern California to south Florida. There are at least 5 more blogs I could pen from the time I got to spend with Marty. Truly amazing encounter. We had a lot in common, and our spirits really connected.

He is a follower of our Lord Jesus Christ. His perspective on life, the journey from California, the people he encountered, and what God was showing him was the gospel….or as my pastor friends would say, “preachable.” Marty asked me a question that I will never forget.

“If I knocked on the door of a church around here, would they help me? I’m not talking about financial help. I mean, let me in off the streets for the night. Maybe give me something to eat, a shower, and a bed?”

I wanted to say a resounding, “Yes!” I wanted to be proud of our God’s church…His body….His people…Yes, Marty they would!!! But, I had a slight hesitation. That is when Marty interjected,

“I thought about doing it…but I never knocked. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it….I would rather not know, than knock and find out the answer is no.”

That floored me. I was speechless. I wanted to assure him that wasn’t the case…but I knew in my heart so many wouldn’t. We kept talking, and Marty didn’t dwell on it…just asked because we had shared a lot of testimony of how God has worked in our lives.

I want to be a part of the Church who answers this question with a loving YES. I long to look out over the congregation to see the beautiful face of someone like Marty. He is just as valuable as anyone else on a Sunday morning. Jesus loves him, and “nailed” that value to the cross!

We need to be the fellowship of the broken and needy….not the Sunday’s best facade so many churches are in this country. It’s not comfortable. It’s not ever a predictable attempt. It’s never convenient. It often looks like an interruption. It is these verses John, the apostle who saw Jesus live this out, penned in his first epistle:

“If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person? Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions.” 1 John 3:17-18

Breathe In & Smile Out,