I know many of you have been hearing about the Block Party we had this past Saturday. i am going to be using some of what happened there as illustration of today's passage which comes from 1 Corinthians 3:13-15..."Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. (14) If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. (15) If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire."
Our works will be seen as it is...revealed by fire. True testing of our thoughts and intents. If they are built upon self, it shall burn like wood, hay, and stubble and nothing will be left to show. If works are built upon the Lord and His teachings, there shall be a reward. As it states here, our works being consumed doesn't alienate us from the Father, but it does keep us from gaining crowns and rewards.
The Block Party from this past Saturday was a definite symbol of a work based upon the Lord. It was a time of giving of ourselves for others. We saw an estimate of 1200 people in the three hours we were open. We fed around 900 hot plate lunches. We were also able to send nearly 300 bags of groceries home with families. One thing I found amazing was that when we ran out of bagged groceries, we didn't just say "sorry, we're out", but took people's names and phone numbers, so we can make up a bag for them this week.
It took all of us working together to accomplish a great work for the Lord. We will get together again later this week to bag another 63 bags of groceries that will be given out. That's a testament to our church's love and care for the community we serve in.
Another awesome sight was the youth standing with folks in the food line and sharing testimonies and the Word of God to others that they didn't know. Our prayer table was packed the entire time, as well. So many hurting people are living around us these days. In the 3 short hours, we had nearly 100 people stop and ask for prayer for hurting loved ones, salvation, and life's troubles. Too many times, we are afraid we will offend by asking people if we can pray for them, but it's obvious they are looking for someone to reach out and care.
This is not a post to collectively pat ourselves on the back, but rather a statement that people are searching for genuine love and care. If we are willing to reach out to them where they need it, they will open up to what we can offer them through the love of Jesus Christ. I pray that this will be a boost to your Spirit today...the fire is burning in many of our hearts here at Emmanuel.
The work has just begun...the Block Party is an outreach, but it's not where the outreach ends, but rather where it begins. Now, we must visit, call, and show the love of Christ to those who so desperately need it.
Join with us and look for an opportunity to share with those that are searching...right around you. They aren't hiding...look in their eyes...you can see it...and if you are doing the works...for God's glory...crowns and rewards will be yours to lay at the feet of the Lord...
Let me know if there is a special prayer I can word on your behalf today...