Christ's transformational loveRich Stigall
Pastor Diton said that God’s using the church to demonstrate Christ’s transformational love. To explain, he introduces me to Stephen. Here’s a pic of Diton with Stephen.
Stephen lost both parents to AIDS. He made a go at survival on the streets. That ended with him being thrown into a fire. (He has horrible scars on his arm and torso.). He tried squatting in the homes of others, and was chased from home to home. There was no capacity for these families to care for their own children.
Then Diton found Stephen. And Stephen found family. In the name and at the compulsion of Christ, the local church welcomed Stephen into loving care with no strings attached. He is safe. He is healthy. He goes to school. He is loved. His life has been utterly and completely transformed. As he talks about what has happened in his life, he hopes in the present and future. He tells of blessing. Not death. Not fire. Not scars. Not rejection. Not shame. Blessing.
Diton says that people in the community walk by and stare. They see the church caring for the kids once thrown away. And they want to know why.
Now they do more than walk by and stare. They stop and ask. They come to church to hear and see why this is happening. And they are welcomed. And they are told. The explanation they hear is that Jesus loves us without condition, so that’s what the church is doing for the Stephens left behind. This message overwhelms.
For any skeptics of Christ’s power, try telling Stephen it’s not real.
This is how the church should love ALL. How simple, inspiring and humbling.