This week, I read an online article written by David Crosby, pastor of First Baptist, New Orleans. It's an inspiring read, and I highly commend it if you have a few minutes: Click here.
Here's my favorite part of the article:
Sometimes, around some people, it is hard to get a thank you in edgewise. I suspicion that people who are busy trying to change their world are also very grateful as a matter of disposition.
Our environment here in New Orleans is being changed one hammer stroke at a time. For us, the progress is visible and palpable. It may be hard to extrapolate our progress to the rest of the world, but all the same principles apply whether we are looking at changing a city or changing a world. The accumulated effect of millions of tiny hammer strokes is the rebuilding of a devastated region. If multiplied throughout the world, the goal of eradicating poverty housing seems truly within reach.
Of course, the only people who hope for and expect such a transformation in our city or our world are the people swinging hammers. Hope springs eternal only when we are busy building what we hope for. If despair or resignation benched us, our inactivity reinforces the despair and quells the hope.
What I get from that is that there are three kinds of people in the world: 1) Those who do nothing about the problems all around them, 2) those who do nothing...but gripe, and 3) those who make a difference. The people in category 3 are the ones who I want to be around. They have hope and joy and a vision for the future.
Unfortunately, many of the people who have read the article instead got hung up on the fact that former president Carter is a main subject. If you read the comments below the article (including mine), you'll see they missed the point of the article entirely.
Here's the thing about category 3 people: They are the ones going with God, because God is a difference maker. That's the name of my next series of messages: The Difference Maker. They will be based on the life of Elijah, but the real subject of the sermons is God. Even when all the world seems to be in chaos and we can't see a hint of the divine, our God is up to something. He does not rest; He always finds a way to redeem. This week's first message in the series is based on 1 Kings 17. Pray with me that this series will inspire us to make a difference in our world for the Kingdom of God.