Dreams do come true. It did this past Sunday.
I love hipster pictures. Except this isn’t your normal church picture trying to show we’re in the mix of culture in the city. You know what I’m talking about.
Yet this past Sunday, I was never more proud of NEWSONG and XEALOTS than when we highlighted this avante guard group of leaders from the streets of Santa Ana led by Brian and Vanessa Peterson. Brian is a Kia Car Designer and he showed us what loving your neighbor is all about. We had friends literally from the Streets of Santa Ana come spend time with us. Here in this photo was two of our VIP’s, Will and Veronica. Brian painted a picture of them and gave them the proceeds to fund a love initiative in their lives. Will and Veronica live in a van with their three dogs. You see Will and Veronica are experiencing homelessness. Brian reminded us that loving the neighbor from Luke 10 isn’t just about loving people like you. It’s loving the other. The one you don’t want to see. The one you’re not culturally comfortable with. The crazy thing is in loving the other, you learn to love God. You learn to love yourself. In loving the other you see God. Often we think of loving the other as a sacrificial, benevolent act on our part. Actually, the OTHER (in this case from Luke 10, the Good Samaritan) is the one that rescues us.
The other saves us.
You read Luke 10 and see if it’s not so.
Right in our backyard, in one of the wealthiest counties in America we have one of the largest homeless populations. I love we now live in the margins not just on Sundays but all throughout the week. It’s become normative. This past Sunday I felt rescued by Will and Veronica and Brian/Vanessa. We laughed together. Cried together. They introduced me to the faces of Santa Ana that we dreamt about years ago. We are living the dream.
Here’s the Story: https://www.facebook.com/NewsongGlobal/videos/1057731234247057/
And here’s the message: https://www.facebook.com/NewsongGlobal/posts/1057706354249545
Friends have been asking me about how to gain clarity or focus in 2016. Here’s a few thoughts I’ve been sharing:
Over the years I’ve had people try to provide answers for my life but often they lack cultural or contextual understanding. What I found most helpful in interaction with creative leaders are questions that provide a framework and guide to unique customized solutions rather than simplistic answers. These questions provide a lens to help you see who you are and what God is doing on in your life. So here are some of those questions that may guide you to live life to the fullest in 2016! The two words I pray for you are Clarity and Joy.
1. What is one word that could capture your focus for 2016?
2. What and Who energizes you? What and Who de-energizes you? We always have to do things we don’t like but what could you do to focus on your natural energy?
3. If you had all the resources accessible to you what would you boldly do? Do it!
4. Instead of complaining about what you don’t have, What is in your hand? What/Who is in your reach today that you could invest in? Moses journey to the promise land started with what was in his hand. You were made for the impossible. You have something within your reach that can get you moving towards your dream. It’s so much easier going forward with a moving car than one that is stationary.
5. A lot is unclear about the future, what is clear to you right now about yourself, others, God and your work? Start there.
6. Instead of looking at what is best for you next year, what is something that may be better for someone else that you could joyfully devote yourself to? If you are second today … you may find yourself first some day.
7. What was surprisingly successful last year; and if you put more resources into it could reap an even greater reward? 8. What do you have to let go of, to hold on to something that is better for you?
This is going to be a great year. God doesn’t necessarily take us out of the trials but He stays with us IN them. Get ready for clarity and a great reward!
Getting ready to rise into the margins of creativity. Just because you’re marginalized doesn’t mean you have a marginal mind. Who told you you’re not creative? Awaken to the original design you were destined to live. Don’t waste your time comparing. Who you’re called to become is within your reach. It’s not the same as yesterday. New players, new ethos, new language and new tools. There is an abundance that is more than you need. Own it.