Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Relational Ministry - Part 2

Our first house-deal fell through…obviously God was at work. We ended up where we live now…that’s a story for a post in and of itself. We’ll just say that as we were leaving the house (unsure of whether this was for us) and Mel said, “I want to see the bathroom one more time.”

As she opened the cabinet, she found a little piece of paper in the far back corner that had Hebrews 11:1 written on it…it was a piece of our confirmation that we were to purchase this house. Even though I was quick to doubt…I told her, “Go put that back, that’s for the people who are supposed to buy this house!”

So, we moved in, determined that we would live on mission among our neighbors. Relational Ministry – from a natural overflow of an invested relationship, we would share about who Jesus was. Not with Jesus tracks and a sign in the yard that says “we don’t drink or smoke because Jesus doesn’t.”

Instead, we would be intentional about getting to know our neighbors and look for opportunities to be the hands and feet of Jesus to them. It’s not a cop-out for not talking about Jesus every time we’re together. It’s taking a long look…realizing we would be living here for years. Over that time we would have numerous opportunities to share. If we’re too forceful upfront…we could ruin opportunities for years to come. We wanted this to be natural part of a relationship with people we genuinely cared for.

So, we were one of the first houses built on our block and as people moved in, we would take them a welcome gift. Nothing big…just some cookies or rice crispy treats. That was our first step in getting to know their names and introduce ourselves. We would leave telling each other "You remember their name? Roland I think? Or was it Ramon? I don't know...go ask him again." Names are important to says something to them if you can't remember their name.

Over the past 6 years, we’ve hosted a block party at our house on Halloween for the entire neighborhood. We don’t play Awesome God over the speakers the whole time…we play music people out here like. We try to take a night that was meant for darkness and somehow be a light for Christ. It’s crazy at times to see over 100 people standing in your front yard from all walks of life, but now everybody knows the pastor in the corner house throws a pretty good party!


  1. And that you do host a fun party!!!

    You and Mel are such fantastic neighbors and I selfishly have to say I'm so glad you not moving now!!! :-)

    And, for now my family actually do not got to church. But we have a lot in common with your family. We are rather "Jesus like" when you think of it - We are simple people that don't smoke or drink booze but as you say there is no sign on our lawn saying that either!

    Cheers Tim!

  2. Thanks Terri! We love having you guys as neighbors!

  3. the baby suspense is killing me!!

  4. Tim what a cool post! Of course it truly brings back years of memories for me. I remember the interview and when I hired you two as a CARES Team! You two were the SUPREME CARES TEAM! You are both really great at evangelism and do it with such ease. You both are simply "real" no pretenses that feel awkward, or fake, or judgemental. People simply experience love, and who can say no to that? Love it! Tell Mel hello. I love reading your posts. Bruce says "Hi"...