After leaving everything and following Him (Jesus!), we sought to follow him as he loved on the city of Springfield and our under-served Neighborhood. We followed him in building trust and igniting hope. We followed him in pursuing unity through racial reconciliation/healing.
We aimed to do what Jesus was doing by reconciling ourselves with our forgotten and often overlooked neighbors. Along the journey, we partnered with Joy Fagan who is the founder of Sifi Ministries and Safe Harbor House to pursue similar dreams that we all carried in our hearts for our dear community.
We dreamed of how God wanted to use us where he placed us, in a community that is rich with history and beauty and also broken and divided. We dreamed of growing in relationship with our neighbors, turning 'us" and "them" into "we" as we build real relationships. We dreamed of affirming the dignity of the people in our community as they were made in the image of our Creator. We followed him into loving them and into right relationship with Himself as their true selves, families, and community. We dreamed that this right relationship would not just be spiritual, but emotional, physical, economic, and social. We considered what it would be like to restore the age-old foundations, repairing the ruins of injustice left to spread through our city. We dreamed of restoring the streets to do justice in which all could dwell. As in the words of the Prophet Jeremiah," we work and pray for the well- being of our city (or neighborhood)," believing that if the entire community does well and prospers, then His Light will rise in darkness.
As we continue to dream, we pray, and we work, doing justice in our city as Isaiah 58 shouts out for us to do. May a beloved community emerge and a Legacy left that glorifies Christ as we march on following Him. - "you are the only Bible some unbelievers will ever read" John MacArthur