40 Day Fast: My Neighbors


(the view from behind our front door)

Today I’d like to talk about missions in your face. Actually in MY face. I’ve been on too many Mexico missions trips to remember. I’ve co-led a Romania missions trip. My wife Jen went to Fiji on a missions trip. When I was a youth pastor I used to take our kids to downtown San Diego to feed the homeless once a month. But what’s been on my heart is the need right here in our suburbia paradise of Hummers, 3,000+ square foot homes, wineries, and wanna-be Orange County people. What’s the problem? Well, the bottom has fallen out from under a majority of these people. They’re losing their homes, their hummers, their marriages, etc.

So where to suburban soccer moms & dads go when they can’t feed their families? What do they do when the water gets turned off? What happens when there’s not enough gas in the Lexus to get to work?

There is one place that is literally in MY face. It’s right across the parking lot of our church. It’s a place called The Community Resource Center (no website – we gotta fix that), and it’s run by St. Martha’s Catholic Church. Here’s a place that twice a week fills hundreds of cars (hummers included) with groceries as they pass right by our church. Here’s a place that gives moms who can’t feed their babies, boxes of formula, diapers, medicine, and referrals to other local places where they can get more help. Here’s a place that gives older folks an opportunity to give back to their community, rather than sitting around a bingo table all day. Here’s a place that passes out toothbrushes because there’s actually families that have to spend their money on Top Romin, rather than basic health necessities.

While I am “busy” in my office, cars full of needy and desperate people are lined up to go to the building right across the parking lot from our church. So my goal is to spend more time out there, with those people, than in my office. I don’t know what that exactly looks like yet, but I’m committed to being a part of something that effects the people right in MY face.

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” James 1:27

Take some time today and pray for the Community Resource Center in beautiful suburban, Murrieta, California. They are actually being the church to people that live right next door to me.

11 thoughts on “40 Day Fast: My Neighbors

  1. Kristin

    Alex, this is so true. I think it’s common that we don’t feel the need to reach out to people who may own a lexus, yet they need help, love and support the same as others do.

    Thank you for posting and being a part of the 40 day fast!

    Kristins last blog post..As a Citizen of the World

  2. Jeff

    Alex,

    I’ve often walked by there and said I want to be involved with that type of ministry. Today I’m going to call and see how I can volunteer there.

  3. euphrony

    It’s really hard to empathize with people driving a Hummer and living in mansion when they tell us that they are strapped and need help just to get food. I so much want to yell at them something about wise choices and advice to sell, sell, sell. Maybe I need to soften my heart a bit.

    People of all stripes are feeling the pain of a bad economy right now. And selling luxury items isn’t really a choice when no one is buying. Thanks for talking about this, Alex. I’ll be praying for you today.

    euphronys last blog post..Finally, incontrovertible proof of original sin

  4. Kendra Watson

    I’ve been at the office before when the line of cars is coming through and felt a tug on my heart as well. Maybe we can do the free coffee thing again on a more intimate level since there are fewer people and they are right in our backyard rather than on their way to work. Might be a chance to start conversations and show we care. Who doesn’t like coffee right ;o)

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  7. James McLean

    this is good. its hard to be a missionary here in america, especially if you grew up here because everything is screaming at you “indulge!”. may God continue to call people out of their comfort and into a place where we pour our lives out for others.

    James McLeans last blog post..I don’t really know what I’m doing

  8. Melissa

    Don’t forget to mention the fantastic thrift store. It is the nicest one in the Valley! All housewares were half off yesterday! All the money goes to help the resource center.

    Melissas last blog post..Unabashed Worship

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