Not everyone lives like you do.

I’ve spent my entire life living along the Ohio River.  My entire adult life I’ve had a natural gas furnace for heat.  I thought everyone heated with either gas or electric.  When we were sent here to Short Gap, WV, I was shocked when I found out the parsonage had an oil burning furnace.  And not only that, but the furnace  heats water and sends it throughout the house through baseboard heaters to heat the house in the winter.  The church has the same heating system.  I’ve had a washer hose burst before causing lots of damage in my house.  It doesn’t seem like a good idea to have water lines going through every room of your house along the floor.  It seems like an accident waiting to happen!  I really thought every community in West Virginia would have natural gas.  Gas is so plentiful where I’ve lived my whole life.  And the few people who didn’t have natural gas would heat with electric or propane.

As far as I can tell, most people around here heat with oil and baseboard heaters.  It’s not like what I have known my whole life.  It’s different.  I suppose I’m going to have to find out how you know when you need oil delivered.  We never had to order natural gas.  Sometimes we forget that everyone doesn’t live the same way we do.  Sometimes we don’t really understand the differences between how we live and how others live.

I have been reminded of that on numerous occasions.  I found that out firsthand in Ghana, Africa in 2010.  It hit home in early 2012 when I found out someone I used to know was now living under a bridge (please read my blog about that here when you’re done with this one).  Then I had a great reminder in Haiti in March of this year.

In most places in the world, there are not heated and air-conditioned churches on every corner.  There are not paid, seminary educated pastors in most churches in the rest of the world.  (I remember when I was preaching in Haiti, the pastor was taking all kinds of notes when I was preaching.)  In some places the church has to meet in secret for fear of being tortured or killed.  In most places the church is not a prosperous, beautifully kept, social club.  I heard Pastor Matt Chandler say once that the church has never handled prosperity well.  We in the American church are living in comfort and prosperity.

In other parts of the world (and under some bridges here in America) they love and rely on Jesus because He’s all they have.  The challenge for us is to love and rely on Jesus even when we are so well off that it appears we already have all we need.

(don’t forget to read this touching blog from early last year)

*

*

*

*

*

*

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Walking the Walk and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s