Thursday, October 25, 2012

Preaching Through Action

On his first trip with Casas por Cristo, Jim Runkel returned to his church in Victoria, BC, Canada to share this experience with his congregation...

On Saturday last week I gave the sermon and it lasted 8 hours.  But nobody noticed how long I preached because each member of the congregation was preaching for the same length of time.  We preached of God’s love for his fellow man; we preached with each hammer blow, with each 2x4 cut and with each shovel of dirt.  We preached to all the neighbours and to the family whose home we were building.  We showed them by our actions that Jesus lives in us and works through us.  We showed them by how we worked together as a team; always smiling, always showing respect and love to each other.

On Sunday we continued preaching, but never once discussed theological differences.  We worked side by side with our brothers and sisters in Christ to give a family a much needed home.  It was the sermon of love we preached on this Sunday.

In the end, we prayed with our hands on the house; on the house that our hands had built. We prayed that this house will forever be a beacon of light, a CASA por Cristo, a house for Christ; for His love to shine forth.  We gave of ourselves to build a house for a mother, father, and three children; a gift from us to them, but in the end it was us who were blessed the most.  It was us who were given the gift of love and peace which comes from working with Jesus at the center of all we did.

The media had portrayed Juárez as an evil place, a place to be avoided at all costs…but we found Jesus living there and we found love and peace in this place.  We were strangers in this place but were treated, by those whom we came in contact with, like family.  

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