January 28, 2013
Pastorgraphs: “A Greater Calling”
Since becoming Christ United Methodist Ministry Center in July 2011, much of our attention has by necessity focused on repairs and maintenance of our 60+ year-old buildings.
That is not to diminish our mission of providing these ministries:
· To Feed The Hungry - (Crossroads Grocery Ministry)
· To Quench (Spiritual) Thirst - (Worship Center)
· To Clothe the Naked - (Brother's Keeper - Thrift Shop - Dress for Success)
· To Befriend the Stranger - (Haitian and Refugee Ministries)
· To Care for the Captive - (Coming Home to Stay)
· To Minister to the Sick - (Balm of Gilead Spiritual Healing)
These are based upon and map to the things that truly matter, according to Jesus’ instruction in Matthew 25:35-36:
· “For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat;
· I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink;
· I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;
· Naked, and you clothed Me;
· I was sick, and you visited Me;
· I was in prison, and you came to Me.”
· (New American Standard Bible - Notice the “Me” is capitalized, for Jesus said that in doing these acts of kindness “unto the least of these” we are doing them unto him!)
Being an incubator for churches and charities and helping them to get established has been our purpose for the past seven years as we transitioned from church to urban ministry center. That purpose will continue. After attending two meetings last week, the Holy Spirit is beckoning us to fulfill A Greater Calling.
The first meeting was Tuesday at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church on Ohio Street. This small ecumenical minister’s prayer group has a long history and big vision: to discover and coordinate the various ministries being offered in the Mid-City area of San Diego.
The second meeting was Thursday at First United Methodist Church, San Diego. This United Methodist minister/laity group is seeking to do much the same thing – to offer food, clothing and care to those in need in what we call the “central mission area”, roughly the same urban area of focus as the ecumenical group.
In both meetings, we all agreed this NEEDS to be done. But who has the time, resources and expertise to do this daunting task? And more importantly, how?
I imagined the amazing opportunity this presents for the Ministry Center and all these other churches. If someone or organization collects and maintains a database of what each church is doing, they certainly could be more efficient in offering acts of kindness to those who come for help. Plus, they will be more effective in meeting the needs of those who need a helping hand. And the database should not be limited to churches, for there are many other agencies such as the Red Cross, Goodwill, Salvation Army, METRO, Good Neighbor Center, Catholic Charities and Father Joe’s Village who offer helping hands.
I became convicted, convinced and enthusiastic that this is the perfect fit and the proper greater calling for Christ Ministry Center! While we have limited resources (money and man/womanpower) alone to perform the six ministries of Matthew 25 by ourselves, we can help ALL ministers, lay servants, and charities to become aware of collective outreach ministries. By awareness, cooperation and coordination, we certainly will accomplish more together than any one of us can do by ourselves.
For example, when a hungry family comes to Christ Ministry Center for food on Tuesday, we would no longer have to tell them to come back Friday for the grocery ministry. We could simply query the online database to see what church, charity or agency has food available on Tuesday! And it is not just “food ministries”. The database could contain information on resources for shelter, clothing, employment, counseling, medical care, etc.
This is huge! Please pray for us as we seek to implement a better way to serve “the least of these” in the heart of San Diego.
Blessings to you for an exhilarating week of walking with our Lord God, Pastor Bill
From the Quote Garden:
“This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.”
~ George Bernard Shaw ~
REMINDER: “Integrity Academy” begins this Sunday, February 3, 9:00-9:40 AM at Christ United Methodist Ministry Center, 3295 Meade Avenue, San Diego CA 92116. The Academy will meet each of the four Sundays in February at the same time (four 40-minute sessions). You are invited to attend, and learn how to begin your journey to a life if integrity, happiness and success. For details call the church office (619) 284-9205 or respond to this email.
Christ United Methodist Ministry Center
“Christ in the Heart of San Diego”
3295 Meade Avenue - San Diego, CA 92116 - (619) 284-9205