Who do you admire? Chances are that person has qualities and characteristics that you would want to emulate in your life. Perhaps it is integrity, kindness, purpose or compassion. In Ephesians 5 the Apostle Paul issues a serious challenge when he writes, “Be imitators of Christ.” To imitate someone means that we seek to adopt those qualities they possess for ourselves. Paul even sights some examples of Jesus: love, sacrifice, purity and thankfulness.
As Christians we all recognize the calling to act like Jesus, and we all understand the challenge that affords to us. Jesus’ last challenge to his followers was to go and make more disciples… teaching them to obey what he had instructed, because lost people matter to him. Hopefully, we are using whatever platforms are available in our life to share the message of Jesus. His challenge to us is to be his witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8). Let’s say in our context, Willard, Ohio, The United States and around the world. The point is, he wants us involved in evangelism to not just one of these areas, but all of them.
On October 6 our church has a unique opportunity to participate in a one day mission trip to Cleveland with Envision. Last Tuesday, I had the opportunity at our District Conference to get a taste of what that trip might be like for us. I spent time with Faith Alliance Bible Church in the heart of one of Cleveland’s poorest communities.
The church has an outreach to their next door neighbor – a hotel that houses mostly prostitutes. The folks of Faith Alliance are lovingly sharing the message that Jesus loves them and wants them to know him. They have a community garden for the neighborhood because there are no grocery stores within miles, and people simply have no access to fresh produce. They have a community center and help train people to interview well and find jobs.
I was so blessed to spend a few hours with them, and in about a month, we will get to spend even more time with them as we seek to honor Jesus by sharing his love in our Judea. I hope you will consider joining us. I truly believe you will not just have the opportunity to bless others – I believe you will be blessed too!