Want Change? Start Here.

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There’s a lot to care about these days. My generation (millennials) are particularly bent towards activism, and are drawn to speak out. It doesn’t take a very lengthy scroll through our social media to see how passionate we are about a variety of issues facing our country.

I find within my self a sense of satisfaction when I join the fray. Maybe I find an article that I feel perfectly sums up my opinion, and I post it with a passionate plea for people to agree with me. In that moment, I can almost get the impression I’ve really spoken out… even made a difference. I am satisfied with feeling right.

In our series “One Another,” we’re talking about God’s desire in Scripture for our churches to be diverse, fully reflecting his glory to the world. As a pastor, my biggest fear in speaking on issues of race (or any issue) is being so content in our convictions that we never move them to action. We’ve skirted around the issue for too long. Almost everyone thinks we should welcome diversity in the Church, but judging by statistics, very few are acting on it. According to research, 90% of American Churches draw 90% of their people from one ethnic group.

At Restoration, we’ve decided to put a pin in 811 Bryan Avenue (where we meet on Sunday nights) and look at how the kingdom of God could break in within a one mile radius. I’m challenging us to connect issues out there to places and people right here.

Care about the plight of refugees in our country? Serve with Kentucky Refugee Ministries around the corner on Limestone.

Care about homelessness? Lexington Rescue Mission is a great place to volunteer.

Care about racial reconciliation? Build relationships with the kids and volunteers at the Dunbar Community Center, which serves the East End neighborhood and beyond.

The list could go on. But more than any organization, there is one place that I believe is our best chance of making a difference – the local church. Our mission at Restoration is restoring people who restore the world, and as a part of the body of Christ, we are being restored for the sake of our world. It’s where we learn to love, and together, it’s where that love get’s to be put on display by both demonstration and proclamation. Saying and doing.

This weekend as we continue our series “One Another,” we’re going to talk about practical steps we will take – both as a community and as individuals – to be and become a more diverse church. My prayer is that, as we are restored by Jesus, we move into tangible ways right here in the middle of our city, discontent with “speaking out” and empowered for “living out.”

See you Sunday night.

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