A month ago, September 14th, I was coming back from the Christian Community Development Association’s (CCDA) National Conference in New Orleans. Beforehand, I wasn’t sure what to expect. However, a couple thousands of Kingdom driven Christians and I, were presented with exceptional breakout sessions, worship sessions, and stories led by people living out The Great Commission. I left with a great sense of information, inspiration, empowerment, and a challenged mind.
Often at these conferences we are challenged by some of the profound ideas that are being thrown our way. This conference had many of these challenging ideas. However, the main point was so clear and so important. It all pointed back to characterizing and living out Christ’s mission, as Jesus did in His time here on Earth. Jesus focused on the Kingdom, “here, as it is in Heaven”.
There was a speaker who spoke of the ministries he began to help those previously in gangs and/or incarcerated. Father Boyle, founder of Homeboy Industries, explains that the start of the company lied in the compassion of wanting to live out God’s mission by being in kinship with them, standing in awe of what they have to offer, rather than in judgment. Another speaker, Pastor Oscar Brown, founder of Desire Fellowship in New Orleans, LA explained that in the community you are serving you should have faith that there is potential of the whole community (people, warehouse, and businesses). Dr. Soong-Chan Rah, piggy-backing off of Pastor Brown’s comment, expressed that we are not to try and be the superheroes wearing a “Christ cape” to save the community, but rather God’s people planting the seeds of the Kingdom to all people and communities, allowing all victories to point to Him.
All points and ideas emphasized the idea that we are called as Christians to take part in this world, not just within the boundaries of our church building, but in a wide range of community. As Christians, we are to remember the elements of the Lord’s Prayer and to live as Jesus did, revolving a lot of His ministry around the marginalized people. This is what God has commanded us to do and has shown us through the example of Jesus’s life. So, it all brings me to beg the question: How can the church and we, as individuals, live out this calling and purpose as Christians on this Peninsula?