Monday, September 5, 2011


Yesterday, I had the wonderful privilege of attending two sporting events here in my city-the inaugural University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) football game in the afternoon, and the San Antonio Silver Stars (WNBA) basketball game last night. Today while thinking about my outing last night, God prompted me to ask myself this question, “Shouldn’t we (Christ followers) be some of the first ones to attend our community events? Shouldn’t we look for opportunities to attend our community festivals, sporting events and other celebrations and be some of the most ardent supporters of them?” I’m not talking about attending only Christian events (although we should attend those as well) and I am not talking about attending events that blatantly make a mockery of God (and there are plenty of those). I am talking about getting out into the places where the people are, where engagement and conversation and relationship can be formed. In fact, when I look at Scripture, I see Jesus doing that very thing. He didn’t have a problem attending parties, or going to the festivals, or interacting with people in large crowds at celebrations in the community. He wanted to be where the people were, that’s where some of the greatest ministry could be accomplished.

When the people around us begin to see that we care about the things they (our community) values, then a great INTERSECTION develops-a place where you share the same passions, if only about a particular subject matter and if only for a short amount of time. It is in that intersection where God can do some of this best work. In fact, had I stayed home yesterday, I would have missed the opportunity to see my friend and ministry buddy Luke intersecting with a family sitting next to him at the football game. What a joy it was to watch as he and a complete stranger discussed the finer points of football and celebrated together each touchdown scored. That is intersecting with our community. Had I been too tired to go to the basketball game in the evening, I wouldn’t have met Marquis, a fellow brother in Christ who was introduced to me by my mother-in-law Glenda after she turned around in her seat to comment on his voice-which reminded her of someone she knew. Out of that intersection, subsequent introduction and further discussion, Marquis and I traded business cards and are looking at ways to partner together in ministry right here in our community.

What’s my point? Well, I had an epiphany today that when Jesus said GO in Matthew 28 he didn’t just mean GO to Africa or Mexico or even to our local coffee shops and school buildings. Don’t get me wrong, believers in the Lord Jesus Christ should be going to all of those places. But I believe we should also be checking our community calendars and looking for announcements of upcoming fairs, festivals, celebrations and sporting events in our communities. If we love the people in our communities like we say we do, then we should want to be where they are. Yes, that means having them bump into us and spilling beer on our shoes. Yes, that means waiting in long lines to get out of parking lots and visiting smelly port-o-potties. The only way to truly love and minister to our communities is to become a part of the community. And the way to become a part of the community is to GO where the community gathers.

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