Does anyone remember the ‘good ole days’ when people ‘rubbed elbows’ or ‘rubbed shoulders’? You know a time when you interacted with people regardless of their belief system. You may have even had friends that were of totally opposite political beliefs as you. Friends who voted different than you. Or maybe you had friends that were religious and you were not. Maybe you had friends that had totally opposite careers than you. But it did not end with your friends. You interacted with friends and some of their friends or relatives who maybe had totally different perspectives than you.
What if we got back to rubbing shoulders? What if we got back to hanging out? What if we got back to loving on people just because they are fellow human beings? What if we got back to realizing if we want to share the love and hope of the Gospel we need to rub shoulders.
What if we created an environment where it was safe for hurting, broken people could just hang out and rub shoulders with those who have some level of well being in their life? What if we created an environment where Christian friends/acquaintances/strangers felt comfortable bringing their loved ones to the location(s) where we rub shoulders. Why? Because they heard stories of how others have been touched by the mercy, love, grace, power of God. A place where the atmosphere creates positive changes which leads to positive futures. Where God is Creating Futures.
What We Saw
When my wife Carmi and I were at the LCO Reservation in Couderay, WI we saw people bringing friends, relatives, acquaintances, to the evening worship/pray/ministry meetings we held. Nobody had to ‘force’ them to do this. They did it on their own. Each night there was ministry but there was also a meal with fellowship. People were just hanging out and rubbing shoulders. The culture there was much different than what we have seen where we live now and where we have lived for decades. (For me the last time is when I lived in Alaska. For Carmi it is when she lived in the Philippines.)
This was happening within a church. I wonder what would happen at LCO if it was done outside the walls of the church. Honestly, gets me dreaming and ready to spend some months doing ministry at the LCO Reservation. I know it would work there.
In today’s culture the concept of rubbing shoulders with anyone, especially of a different perspective has gone out the window, even among Christians. Everything else is more important than souls. My next article will address this mindset, that has bleed into the Church.