My friend, in real life, Michaelanne is living and working in Hunting Park, Philadelphia and she wrote an intriguing post about transformation. I can't stop thinking about it in light of our place in this neighborhood.
Chris and I talk about the neighborhood and our purpose here. Our families think about it. Why are we here? What is our purpose? How do we fit into God's plans in the life of this neighborhood? How are we to interact with the people in this neighborhood? "Err on the side of grace."I've heard. Yes, but without the knowledge of our own sin, how sweet can grace really be? So how do you talk about THAT without being judgemental?
And yesterday I was listening to the radio and heard a message about the Good Samaritan. It really had me thinking about this whole neighborhood thing. How am I to be a picture of Christ to those around me trapped by sin? That isn't to say I don't sin--believe me sometimes I don't even want to be in my head and heart. But by God's grace I am not trapped. I don't know how to separate the Grace of God from the Sin of Man; I actually don't think you can. And now we are back to the question: How do you talk about the sin of man without being judgemental?
Perhaps I am placing too much value on myself. What if I just did what I was led by the Holy Spirit to do every time I was led to do it? What if in following His leading, He was able to do the work of conviction and transformation? What if I truly allow myself to be the vessel instead of believing myself the transformer? What if I became transformed from vain to humble? And really what does that look like?