Rachel and Abraham walk the streets of a rundown neighborhood in Puebla, Mexico. Hungry dogs roam. Rubbled yoru bricks litter a small lot where children play soccer. Spent fireworks litter the streets for children to gather and use the burnt edges to draw on cement. A rusty, abandoned vendor cart serves as a play gym for three preschool girls.
Rachel and Abraham are young. They married just over a year ago. Both are teachers. They have a dream that, to most, would be a nightmare. Rachel and Abraham want to buy a plot of land in the middle of this slum so that they can offer hope to families and show them how much Jesus loves them. Their dream of building a modest house with a small playground for the children will take just 40,000 American dollars. While we walked, Rachel told me that she and her husband feel called to live in the community they feel called to minister to. They don’t want to drive in for visits and bible stories. They feel called. Compelled. It is their dream and they pray that God might give it to them.
What is my dream? What is yours? A lot of church planters dream of being the next Francis Chan or Matt Chandler. I see big buildings, portable sound systems, slick graphics and big productions. How many campuses do you have? I suppose those can be good dreams … as long as the focus is on lifting up Jesus. But I’m not really into production … I’d rather have people reach people than spend $2000 developing a website to do it. I’d rather not have people coming to hear our kicking worship band play while pin-spots weave in and out of the haze. I’d rather they come because we genuinely love them.
I want to dream like Abraham and Rachel. Lord, change my heart so that people, not production, are most important to me.
I remember a song I sang in my childhood, “His banner over me, is love.” Might that banner be my goal rather than a high-resolution, modern banner introducing yet another slick church production.