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Thursday, 5 December 2013

Dear East London Christian

East London Christian, I have a dream...

I dream of a city of Christians that live in the culture of being ONE church. They come to the realization that they are in fact ONE body that merely gathers at different addresses on Sunday mornings. 

I dream of a city of Christians that rid themselves of competitiveness. Since I've been saved, there's been this underlying, subtle and never actually admitted belief amongst us that 'my church is better that yours'. It's never actually said outright but it comes out by the little statements we make...our church is THIS big...we have THIS many worship teams now...we have expanded to THIS many ministries this year....our budget is THIS much....we had THIS many people attend our conference...our pastor was invited in THAT country to preach...the Holy Spirit did THIS amongst us....it's a competitive spirit that I'm sure you, like me, are so sick and tired of. Who the hell cares how many worship teams my church has? Who cares how big your youth group is? None of it matters.

I dream of a city of Christians who will ask themselves "How best can we love and serve the community that we're in, whether they come to my church or not or serve the Jesus I love or not! How can I make such a difference in my city, suburb and community that if we had to close down THEY would notice??!! No, not the Christians. But the unbelieving community would actually say "Flip! I sure miss those Church guys...what happened to them?" Where our motive isn't to get people to pray a sinners prayer or to evangelize them into our church programs; but to love their city and those whom they come across just because. 

I dream of a city of Christians who wouldn't be intimidated by one another's gifts or talents, but would actually feel stronger by the mere fact that the very person with that gift is actually on their team - moving in the same direction as you and with the same heart as you - they not competing for your place.

I dream of a city of Christians that wouldn't just see 'spreading the gospel' as an event or tent crusade or demonstration; but would see it as living. Caring for the lost at work, helping the lost school, smiling at the lost in the queue at the Spar, giving to the lost at any opportunity even if it is giving an extra buck to the smelly car guard or the lousy waitress who was having a bad day, praying for a gym mate that's going through a tough time at home. Spreading the Gospel is a lifestyle. It's a lifestyle of living love; its an aroma of mercy and kindness that emanates through anything I do. Some times it's sharing Bible. Most times its sharing your heart.

I dream of a city of Christians who would fall in love with their city and who would not stop crying out to God to feel for the lost in their city the way He does. 

East London Christians...my dream is for us.


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