Last Saturday we had a party at Dickinson Square Park called Summer’s Last Blast. Like everything we do as a church, this wasn’t just for us, but done to also be a blessing to our neighborhood. We were grateful to have the Sovereign Grace church in Harrisburg came down to handle all the setup, manning of stations and tear down, so that we could be free to engage our neighbors. Seeing them work so hard, and with such joy, was a fresh reminder to me of the beauty of partnership in mission. We had a pretty good turnout from the neighborhood. As I said this past Sunday, we didn’t take an exact count, but we served about 500 hot dogs. So unless a professional hot dog eater was there, we probably had a few hundred people cycle through. I think that's pretty amazing! One of my neighbors said he had never seen anything like this at the park and was just blown away with gratitude.
In reflecting on this time, there are really two things that get me excited about it. First, I am excited about the individual seeds that were sown. I had, and I know many of you had, multiple opportunities to share about Jesus with our neighbors. There was obviously a lot of curiosity about why we were doing this and not asking for any money. Philly is used to churches throwing fundraisers, but not giving things away. It was great to be able to use people's curiosity to draw them out about their spiritual backgrounds and from there share about Jesus. A bunch of people said they wanted to come see our worship service and what Christ Church was all about. Two of them actually did the next day! The gospel is powerful and so as we shared it, I am so excited to see how God is going to use it to powerfully transform people’s lives.
Two, I am excited about the culminative effect an event like this can have in our neighborhood as we continue to engage with our community over the years. A great thing about being a neighborhood church with roots in the ground is that as we continue to do things in our neighborhood, our reputation grows, giving us more and more opportunities to share about Jesus. Already people remember us from the community clean up we did last year,the kid’s camp we had, our Christmas caroling and our Easter outreach this year. By God’s grace we are beginning to get a reputation for being a positive influence in our neighborhood. Who knows how God will use these continual opportunities we have 10, 20, 40 years from now?
It is a privilege to be part of this community on a mission, known as Christ Church, with each one of you. Let’s continue to be faithful to sow as many seeds as we can, praying to the Lord of the Harvest to see great works done in our neighborhood and city!
- Pastor Jeff
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