Saturday, November 10, 2012

Hurry up. . .for what?

My new friend, Terry (see post from yesterday) told me a somewhat amusing story last week when we met. He described for me the approach of one organization that feeds the homeless and then leads them in a worship service. 

"While you are eating, the staff comes through urging you to 'hurry up and eat, hurry up now and eat your food!'" he reported. 

"Every time I've taken a meal from this group, they come through and rush you up before you  go to the church service," he explained.

"Well, one time when they came by rushing us, I shouted back, 'Well, you sure don't rush up the sermons in church!" he told me. 

"They rush the meal and then have us in preaching for two hours!" 

I had to laugh. 

It is said that Jesus preached "good news" to the poor.

I'm wondering what really "good news" might sound and look like for folks on the streets today? 

Is it a sermon filled with religious doctrine to be believed? 

Or, might it be a leisurely meal accompanied by encouraging table talk, unrushed among friends? 

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gosh Mr. James, this little anecdote, supports your secular ministry. Congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Thoughtful. Certainly rushing someone through their meal to hear a sermon is not likely to have the intended consequence. (Kind of like knocking on doors and handing out pamphlets.) Whereas meaningful conversation and engagement takes a lot more thought, and time, but may actually lead somewhere. And meaningful conversation with those with whom few engage shows care, and respect.

Anonymous said...

I suppose there are those who could get caught up in the spirit during those 2 hours or at least appreciate a warm spot to sleep, but I imagine it must seem like an high price to pay for a sandwich.

Larry James said...

Anon 8:38, no, no, dear one, it is not secular at all; far, far from it. It is however a redefinition of the "spiritual" after the way of Jesus, or so it seems to me. Think about what you would want if you were living on the streets tonight; I think you'll get the point if you do that.

Anonymous said...

Its a high price to hear the gospel?

Anonymous said...

The price is high if you are being preached "at" rather than ministered "to". I believe the point is we need to listen and then talk. Two hours of preaching leaves very little room for meaningful exchange. Just projecting my own opinion on how others might feel.

Anonymous said...

Ministry can be secular as the case of City Square. There is certainly a difference in hearing the gospel message and Sunday preaching. I guess as long as your outreach is on the government payroll, sharing the gospel is either illegal or unnecessary or both.

japierpont said...

I love the way posting anonymously lets you be a complete ass to people just trying to reach out to others.

Larry James said...

Anon 1:32, first the majority of our support doesn't come from govt sources. Second, even those funds don't limit our sharing faith so long as we don't make our help dependent on folks taking part in religious activities. Such activities if coerced don't amount to much any how, do they. My point is to spotlight common sense, respect and freedom. If that is by your definition "secular," so be it, my friend.

Myriah Garcia said...

Is there a like button? This is a good one...