Living a God-Created Identity
““I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never—I promise—regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind.” Luke 6:35-36 The Message
Jonathan is a homeless young man who came to CCDC for the first time last Wednesday. He hadn’t eaten anything for a while so he quickly devoured two plates of the turkey Manhattan that Soul City Catering had prepared for our dinner church.
Dustin is another homeless young man who came for dinner church last Wednesday. He has been coming with his fiancé Crystal for the past few weeks. They are looking for a place to live through the help of Horizon House, a resource for the homeless. In the meantime they have benefited from the help we have been able to give them.
We have had clothing donated lately but no one had donated men’s shoes. But while I was serving meals, Steve Steffel, a volunteer and CCDC Board member, came over to me with a plastic bag with two pairs of size 11 men’s athletic shoes. I then noticed that Dustin’s shoes looked pretty worn also. So I went over to him and asked what size shoe he wore. He said, “eleven.” I handed him the hardly worn shoes and they were a perfect fit. He was delighted to have them. I then saw Jonathan’s shoes and asked him if he would like some new shoes. He said he needed size ten. I said, “Try these on and see if they might still fit you.” He did and they fit perfectly. He was so happy to have them.
Steve and I later talked with each other about how the Lord knew that these two men needed those size eleven shoes. We understood how God prompted him to bring those shoes that particular night. It all worked out perfectly. One of the greatest needs for the homeless is shoes. Living on the street, their feet take a pounding and their shoes are often in terrible shape. Dustin and Jonathan really appreciated Steve’s kindness.
Jesus calls us to such kindness because our Father in Heaven is kind to us. Kindness to others is a reflection of God’s pleasure in being kind to us. When we understand how kind God is in his giving us all we have, we will want to give even more to others. This is to be our “God-created identity.”
We often have closets full of clothing and shoes but do not think to give them away. Our volunteers like Steve know the great need the members of our community have that exists without adequate clothing and shoes. We all have clothes and shoes in our closets that we no longer use or need. We can show kindness by giving them to those who need them. In a world that many times is not kind to the homeless who every day face violence against them and robbery of their meager possessions, CCDC provides a source of God’s kindness.
We are aware of how desperate some of our neighbors are to find enough to eat and clothes to wear. It is our desire to be active in meeting those needs of people who come to us at CCDC. We hope that we can convey our “God-created identity” and demonstrate how kind our Father in Heaven is.
Come join us in showing God’s kindness.
May God’s Peace be with you,
Pastor Jim and Debby Riley