Break Down the Walls

Over the last 10 days I have been working on this week’s new lesson for youth.  I have been trying to figure out the best way to reach the community around us, or to use our pastor’s words, to reach the ridge.  I have wanted to help our kids go from going to church to being the Church.  In order to do this, I have to help them understand that church really starts after the services end. 

            I love NorthRidge Church and I can’t begin to tell you how happy I am that God called me to the place where friends become family.  We have a place to worship and learn God’s word.  We make friends who really do become like family.  We visit our family in the hospital and in their homes.  We help people when they are hurting.  But what happens when it is not church related?

            It seems that at times we are held prisoner by metaphorical four walls of the church.  What would happen if we treated people who did not come to church like they were part of our family?  What would happen if we actually went to where the people were and tried to make a difference in their lives? 

            In John 4, we see the story of Jesus and the woman at the well.  In one situation, we see Jesus break from tradition by talking to a Samaritan woman, lovingly let her know that she is sinning while not throwing it in her face, going to where she was, and giving her a chance to have the salvation that she needs.  What would NorthRidge look like if we did as Jesus did in this story?

            I know that we do a good job at events that reach the lost, but what about on a personal level.  I feel that we are all called to reach people in the same way that Christ did.  I feel that we need to go out to where people are and be the Church to those who would not normally go to a church.  This is the lesson I am trying to teach our youth to follow.  I want them to be the Church so that the lost will be able to find the Savior.  As I prepared this lesson, I realized that I have a lot to work on for myself.  If you are already doing these things, that is great, and I would love to talk with you about what you are doing.  If you are not doing these things, please join me in praying that God puts people in our lives that we need to talk to, and that He gives us the desire to reach people where they are.

Pastor Derrick