Wednesday, April 16, 2008

God's Love - All That and a Bag of Chips

What a glorious sight it was last Saturday during the Love Granbury Kindness Explosion - 10 different churches outside their walls taking God's love into their communities, many of them working together in the same neighborhoods. It truly was an amazing day.

One of the most amazing things about servant evangelism is how common, ordinary items or acts become extraordinary when offered out of a heart overflowing with God's love. It's so cool to watch as a hot dog, a cookie, a bottle of water, or a bag of chips transforms before your very eyes into a tangible expression of God's love! In the same way, a simple act like pumping someone's gas and washing their windshield becomes a holy moment in time. We live in such a "nothing for free" society, that when faced with the prospect of getting something for nothing, many people become highly suspect. It's not at all unusual to hear phrases like "what's the catch" or "why would you do that"? Even after you tell them that what you're doing is completely free, many people still want to know if you're accepting donations! When it finally starts to sink in that they are about to receive something for nothing, simply as a way to show them God's love, you can almost hear the door to their heart creek open ever so slightly. What a holy moment indeed!

Those moments were in abundant supply all over Hood County last Saturday. We may never truly know on this side of eternity how many seeds of God's love and kindness were planted by the Body of Christ this past weekend, but what we do know about is phenomenal! Here are the overall stats as we have them:

Over 500 people participating representing 10 different churches
Approximately 1,350 hot dog lunches (w/chips and drinks) given out
28 vehicles washed
1,676 bottles of water handed out
Over 500 cookies home baked and distributed to local businesses
12 widows home worked on
Pumped gas/washed windshields for approximately 300 people
Distributed approximately 3000 Healthy Kids Summer Lunch Program fliers door-to-door in all of our Healthy Kids neighborhoods as well as at the Granbury City Park and at Granbury Middle School.

All this done free of charge, no donations accepted, no strings attached...all to show God's love in a tangible way! And remember that with each contact, whether it was from handing someone a free hot dog, a bottle of water, washing their vehicle or pumping their gas, each person was handed a "kindness card" with the simple message that what we were doing was a free gift...just like God's love is free! What a simple, yet profoundly powerful message!

As we talked about at the Saturday evening celebration service, the way to truly make Kindness Explosion 08 a real success, is for each of the participating churches to make the commitment to integrate some form of "servant evangelism" into their normal routine of ongoing ministry. Whether it's monthly, semi-monthly, quarterly, or whatever, there's simply nothing more powerful to a watching world than our churches getting outside their four walls and into their communities to share the love of Christ through servant ministry with no strings attached. To God be all the honor and glory!

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