Join us for Shakespeare in the Park on June 26! Click on the picture to register.
Archives For Hospitality
Despite the rain and overcast skies, we had a great day on Sunday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus.
Jesus was raised from the dead, and that changes everything.
Enjoy a few pictures from our moved-from-the-park-to-the-apartment-community Easter picnic.
We’ve wrestled for a while to find ways the Storyline Community could take initial steps into the ministry of justice in Dallas. Thanks to the epiphany of a sharp teammate, we found the perfect starting point.
As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, we’ve learned of the importance of cultivating relationships with our poor and downtrodden neighbors—not treating them as charity cases or objects of evangelism but as friends with dignity and respect. These friendships serve in turn as the foundation of our ability to serve our neighbors in a meaningful way.
After all, how can we know the needs of the poor and needy unless we know the poor and needy?
So we’ve decided to get to know our neighbors. In partnership with Chad and Marjorie Matthews of I Love Evelyn (pictured in the top left and bottom right on the left), we’re hosting a meal at a restaurant in the West End of Downtown. Chad and Marjorie will bring their friends (many of whom are currently on the streets); we’ll bring our Storyline friends. And we’ll all share a meal together and simply get to know each other.
The dynamics of sharing a meal will be significantly different than serving our neighbors a meal—not that there’s anything wrong with that. I’m only hoping this meal levels the playing field a bit and helps us to see each other as peers and equals.
Imagine the possibilities of a movement in which people begin to show interest simply in getting to know their poor neighbors.
I’m excited about this event and think it has the potential to keep us moving in the right direction when it comes to justice issues. We’re praying that God will open our eyes to injustice in the midst of conversations with our neighbors.
I’ve asked Ryan Porche, my co-worker in our church starting efforts, to contribute to the blog this week. Enjoy. CK
We are grateful, as always, for your prayers on our behalf. Next time, Charles will write about creating margin in ministry. For this week, I (Ryan) want to write about what I’m learning about outreach.
Lately, my paradigms for outreach have been attacked (and this is a good thing). I used to see outreach as sending people out to invite more people back in. Granted, even in college, I began to see how the invitation “back in” was much better received when it occurred in the context of genuine relationship. But I was still approaching these relationships with the idea that I had everything to give. I know, I know…such humility! Actually, it’s embarrassing.
You see, as Claudia and I have begun making invitations to our Uptown neighbors, we’ve been surprised at how many—in the same instance of introducing themselves—have invited us into their homes for drinks and conversation. But I’m even more surprised at my own resistance to these invitations! After all, this is not what I had in mind! You’re supposed to come to our apartment so we can get to know you. And the words of a friend begin to echo in my head: what if we need to belong to them before we ever ask them to belong to us?
Ah. Now that’s a question. A one-sided relationship is not much of a relationship. I have realized how important it is for me to see the new people I meet as those who have something to offer me, rather than the other way around. So I embark with a new perspective this week: I’m looking for opportunities to learn and to belong. Rather than starting a new group of guys to play hoops at the park, I will join those already gathered. Rather than schedule as many people over for dinner as possible, we will leave margin to accept the invitations from others.
And as I write, my mind floods with stories of Jesus accepting the hospitality of others. May those who show hospitality to the Kisers and the Porches encounter Christ in us.