“It’s important to understand why churches are so strategically important to carrying out the mission that Jesus described in Luke 4, of bringing the good news of the kingdom of God to the whole world. As individuals, we all have an important role to play in demonstrating the gospel through our lives. We can pray, give, volunteer, and become effective personal ambassadors for the gospel. However, our greatest power to change the world is released when we come together in collective action to organize and focus the resources of the whole body of Christ. A church of one thousand members can have a much more powerful impact by harnessing the power of the whole than its individual members can have by acting alone. God established the institution of the Church as a key strategy for building His kingdom and for leading the social revolution required by the gospel – ‘on earth as it is in heaven’ (Matt 6:10). Said another way, without the collective and organizing power of churches, the ability of Christians to impact the world is greatly compromised.”
Richard Stearns, President of World Vision, from his book, “The Hole in our Gospel”
Most everyone knows of the 7.3 magnitude earthquake that devastated the tiny island nation of Haiti last Tuesday. It is difficult and saddening to watch countries like Haiti and others who have been stricken with similar disasters struggle through the aftermath. Weak governments, lack of national wealth, poor military, and inadequate infrastructure make the recovery from the these disasters all the more difficult. It is encouraging to me to see the outpouring of support that is pouring into Haiti. This help has come form such agencies as the Red Cross, Samaritan’s Purse, Doctors Without Borders, SBC Disaster Relief, and World Vision.
Sad but true, nothing brings the human spirit and heart together like tragedy. The world has seen this time and time again. From Hurricane Katrina to the Southeast Asia Tsunami of 2005, tragedy stirs the hearts of people. As we watch the recovery efforts unfold in Haiti, our hearts are burdened and hurting. We want to do something tangible.
At Port Royal Baptist Church, we will be doing our part. This coming Sunday we will take a Relief Offering for Haiti, giving our people an opportunity to help those who are hurting and displaced. Along with our monetary gifts, the people of Haiti need our prayers, both now and in the future. Haiti is a dark place spiritually. I truly believe the hands-on work of clean-up and rebuilding will serve as the hands and feet of Jesus before the people of Haiti. Perhaps through the simple acts of love more avenues for the gospel will open up.