If you want to donate to our Hurricane Relief fund, click here and be sure to choose "Houston Hurricane Fund." If though the fund still says "Houston" it is broader than that. We will change the name of the designation soon.
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Our thoughts and prayers have been with those in the Houston area who have suffered loss and devastation. We want to give our congregation an opportunity to help with the relief efforts in a tangible way. We will be collecting financial donations through our Sunday offerings, website, and mobile app. As donations are collected, we will forward them on to Samaritan’s Purse to be used for disaster relief efforts. Let’s take a moment and consider what God would have each of us do to demonstrate compassion to those in desperate need.
Prayer for the Nations: Brazil
Population - 195 million (of which 51 million claim to be evangelical Christians). Fastest growing religion is non-religious.
 Pray for the World: A New Prayer Resource from Operation World (Kindle Locations 2639-2641). InterVarsity Press. Kindle Edition.
This past weekend the sickening display of racial disharmony in Charlottesville, Virginia took over our televisions, radios, and social media accounts. Some justify the rights of the “Alt-Right” to conduct a rally. Many condemn the hideous root of hate that fuels the message and actions of supremacy groups.
Unfortunately, reactions quickly escalated toward political posturing and agenda advancement which resulted in the broad brush of group labeling. White citizens are assumed to side with the “Alt-Right” unless it's publicly denied. Black citizens are assumed to side with the “Alt-Left” groups unless otherwise stated. Lost in the conversation is the truth that there are simply millions of Americans shocked, saddened, and worried about the escalation of hate and violence. They are seeking a better answer than jumping on a political bandwagon – an answer that is found in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
True Christianity is a faith that is incompatible with all forms of supremacy. One of the more nauseating features of white supremacy groups is their use of Christian terms to garner some level of respectability for an ideology void of any respect for all Christ came to rescue. Christianity is not the use of Christian terms that justify our own desires.
Christianity is life-transforming faith in the gospel of Christ that justifies us in the sight of God and calls us to carry out His desires. We enter by humble repentance and dependent faith. God’s desires do not include for us to have an attitude of supremacy of any nature. There is no room for personal superiority; we are benefactors of mercy and grace alone.
True Christianity is a faith that transforms us to love others, not merely to avoid hate. There have been plenty of words expressing outrage over the Charlottesville rally, but our civic duty is anemic if it is limited to expressing outrage or simply “liking” or “sharing” the thoughts of others who are outraged.
Loving your neighbor as yourself is a very daunting task and assumes more than just the absence of hate. Do we care about people? Do we even know our neighbors? Are we afraid to go outside our “safe” areas of town to help those in need? Maybe we don't express hate, but avoid people groups that make us uncomfortable.
This lack of love is just as odious to God, as overt messages and actions of hate. If we are not careful, polarizing over extreme forms of hate and supremacy such as we witnessed in Charlottesville may expose our own self-righteous attitudes and lack of humility.
God calls us to honestly assess if our actions preceding and following our words are consistently lived out in Gospel humility toward others. May we all ask for greater grace to love one another with brotherly affection and outdo one another in showing honor (Romans 12:10).
Join us at Hampton Park Baptist Church on August 27th at 9:30am for a special combined adult Sunday school meeting. We will be considering together how the gospel should transform our thinking concerning race and equality.