How Do We Change Our World?

This Sunday we are really exploring a difficult, if not life-changing, topic. The topic is this: how do we live as follo

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wers of Jesus in our world?

Because if you haven’t noticed so much of our world isn’t Jesus-like. There is hate, anger, greed, self-interest, materialism, environmental abuse, violence, and difficulty. These are things that are both prevalent around our lives and affec

t our lives.

The truth is that our world in many ways is far from the Kingdom of God. In God’s Kingdom people don’t go hungry, in our world they do. In God’s Kingdom people are valued, in our world people are left out and alone. In God’s Kingdom

violence has no redemptive power, in our world we think it does. In God’s Kingdom the marginalized are

welcomed, in our world they are forgotten. This isn’t though a case of pessimism because Jesus is clear that his Kingdom is here, it is growing

, it is moving, and it is always also coming. Because of Jesus’ death and resurrection we can have hope in a better world, and not just one we find when we die, but one we can have while we live.

The question then is how do we change the world we are a part of? Because Christianity has been about chan

ge from the beginning. Transformation of personal lives, of communities, of neighborhoods, and even of the entire world. So in light of the major difficulties of the world, how are we to live so that we partner with Jesus in bringing change?

Well on Sunday we are going to be looking at a story that is all about changing the world around: everything from our communities right up to the world of politics around us.

We are going to be looking at the story of Daniel and the Lion’s Den.

I remember a prof once joking that we shouldn’t talk about sex, money, or politics in church. And since I’ve already covered sex and money, I thought why not cover the last one.

So that’s where we’re headed on Sunday, but before we get there why not think about this question and post an answer if you have it. How do you change the world? And where does change start?

Glocal: Getting involved Locally and Globally

This past week I was in Germany for International Board meetings for cbm Canada (www.cbmcanada.org). This is an organization that is absolutely fully committed to breaking the cycle of poverty and disability. They practice deep transparency, inclusion, and fantastic work. I heard stories of people being changed through medical interventions. I heard stories of people receiving sight, of being included where they were ostracized before, of lives and communities being changed through their work. And what I realized was something really beautiful: it’s not just their work, but also my work.

This is something that is powerful about the day and age we live in. My life no longer can just have a local impact, but a global impact. We can spread the Kingdom of God not only here, but also all over the world. The impact and influence of our lives are not confined to our neighborhood, or even nation. Our actions can change our communities here, and in Kuala Lumpur. The point is simple, if we follow Jesus our lives should change people locally and globally. Our lives should change others locally and globally through our service, our advocacy, and our giving.

And so this week as I heard stories, I realized I was a part of those stories.

So my question to you is simple: what stories are you involved in? What stories is your life contributing to? Is your life changing lives not only here but also all over the world? Because we have an amazing gift, and a responsibility to partner with God’s Kingdom change everywhere.

So my challenge to you is this: get involved locally and globally.

If you aren’t consistently and regularly ensuring that your resources, time, and finances are changing lives globally, then I think this is something worth changing. In fact, I know it’s worth changing, because you will be investing in changing lives. So adopt a sponsor child, challenge your friends to join with you, and choose to regularly give. Obviously I’m biased as to what organization you should be involved with, but I’d rather you give anywhere than nowhere. So spend some time, research, and get involved. Because the way you live, can and should change the way others live across the world. This is both our calling and our privilege, and it’s a beautiful thing to be apart of.

Changing the World Locally and Globally

I really believe we are all called to change the world. I believe that often begins by changing the world of those around us. This is a part of our calling as Christians – to be making a difference.

And when I talk about these things I always put it in this language: being locally grounded, and globally focused. Jesus says we are called to love our neighbor as ourselves, and we are to reach out and love them. There is then this great discussion on who is our neighbour, found in Luke 10:25-37. Jesus essentially ends up teaching that our neighbour is someone that is within our reach to help.

There are many next-door neighbors who need help in all sorts of ways: babysitting, cutting the lawn, a friend, meals, or support. The point is that if we can be part of making their lives better, we should be. That’s the locally grounded piece. But if our focus is purely on those around us but we miss the fact that we can be blessing to the world, I think we’ve also missed the point. God has blessed us in Canada, North America, and Europe I believe we are blessed to bless others.

So for me I consistently ask this question: which neighbor can I bless locally? which neighbor can I bless globally?

I think these are good questions to think about, and even greater questions to take action on. And if today you are wondering who you might be able to bless locally? Here’s a good way to get started, sit on your front porch, pray, and watch. Be open to God leading you, and pay attention and I’m sure you’ll find a way to start to bless and give. And if you’re looking for a way to bless globally, well there are many amazing organizations. For me though I’m really invovled in cbm Canada that does amazing work focusing on breaking the cycle of poverty and disability. And if you’re interested in what they do you can check them out in the video below.

The point is that as Christians we need to be involved with both our global, and local neighbours. We need to know names, and faces. We need to be making a difference because as John 1 puts it, when Jesus moved into the neighborhood he changed everything.