Saturday, January 3, 2015


My family and I have been back in Wilmington for a year and a-half.  Since the time we have landed on the ground we have lived into a new reality ---- the reality of being on mission.  Our mission has been to embody hope in real and tangible ways.  While doing this we have been stretched in ways we have found exhilarating and scary ----- but during that whole time God has overwhelmed us with grace and love.  We are so thankful for the terrific people that we have had the opportunity to journey beside, for we know that relationships are the key to living out this missionary journey.  We just want to say a sincere thank you to all of you for your generosity and support.  Because of you all we have been able to take steps with assurance ------ knowing that we are there to help carry heavy burdens together ------ while at the same time there to celebrate what the Holy Spirit is accomplishing through our efforts. 

Very few things at The Anchor have happened for a second time annually.  Two of those things we did in the last couple weeks.  We gathered together with candles in hand and worshiped the God who came in the flesh on Christmas-Eve.  And we also went on Christmas day to a nursing home to celebrate Jesus' birth with those who he cares so much for ------ those who are lonely and sick.  As I looked around and saw the faces of people, that were strangers to me a year ago, I saw family.  People that have poured their life into the journey of following after Jesus, and I have had the opportunity to pour my life into the journey as well.  And we have done it together!

We have dedicated our lives to following after the one who is worthy of our time, energy, and attention ---- but we haven't done this as Lone Ranger Christians ------ instead we have done it in community, as family.  We didn't have to have a committee that told us to do this, or an air-conditioned building, or ample parking spots, or fog machines, or a light show, or an advertising budget, or marketing consultants, or fancy torn jeans, or rent a building, or flashy evangelistic gimmicks, or the "We Love Our City" t-shirts, or the "mission-day" push (whatever that means?) ------ instead we have just decided to live out the love of Jesus by embodying hope where God has placed us.

This is humbling, and in many ways it feels like we are approaching the manger scene like the shepherds that first happened upon that poor, ostracized family 2000 years ago.  We are approaching this scene with awe and wonder as we hear Jesus say to us "See, I am making all things new."  

Let's pray: Make us new O God ------ so that we might be servants to all those you love ------ as we are moved with compassion to embody hope in the situations and circumstances you have placed us.  Let us continue to do this in simple and sustainable ways ------ and in that, may we continue to participate with Holy Spirit in your Kingdom coming to earth, as it is in heaven.  AMEN!