“We love them for who they are.” One Free Methodist lady from Illinois tells me her story of loving the kids from their community. “They are a handful, but we love them just the same,” she continues her sharing with me. This month of October, I visited several churches and shared about God’s work in Asia. At many times during my visit, I would sit down with the pastor and a few church leaders over a Sunday church potluck dinner lunch and we would visit. I would hear stories of God’s work in their locality. For example, Wednesday evening becomes a time for inviting children from the church’s neighborhood. Sunday school times are also moments when the children hear lessons from the Bible. I hear the same kind of Christian witness wherever I go.
In the same manner, when I visit Free Methodist friends from Michigan, they would recount a similar story—stories of loving community kids and accepting them for who they are. There are many challenges, but these do not stop the Christian love from overflowing. One pastor even told me that he accepted the part-time work of being a school bus driver so that he can get to know the children from the school. “I make sure the school children know and call me Pastor Chip,” he shared with me. There is an intentional effort to go out there and become a witness to the kids of the local community.
At many times, I would stop talking and just listen to what our Free Methodist friends are sharing. God is working here in Illinois and Michigan — the same God who is working in Asia. I am grateful that I am serving our God who loves the children of the world.
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