Mary and I met friends for dinner last night. The couple asked me about their neighbors. Two gay men live next door and they believe one is dying. A lot of traffic recently causes them to believe hospice is present. The question from this couple was, “What can we do to effectively minister?” As the rest of us, they don’t want to say or do the wrong thing. What wonderful hearts asking pertinent questions.
So what should be done? I’ll give you my response realizing there are a thousand better and more faithful ones. I urged them to be on that man’s doorstep with food and concern. The key to any move is trusting God to work. God may choose to work through them or they simply may be watering what someone else in God’s kingdom has sown. It seems to me we want these men to know Christians love every neighbor. My goal would be to love this man as closely to the mannerisms of Jesus that can be mustered. I would simply let all in the house know of my concern and see what doors open by God and what ones don’t.
I would ask the man how he’s been doing the last few days. I would ask if he needs someone to sit with him, read to him, pray with him. Eventually, I would ask him if he is afraid. This often unlocks the tightest of stubborn doors. One can only work from his response. I would not go in, at first, bent on winning him; but to be an ambassador for God. I would try to love him as Christ loves all of us. If in that love, the opportunity arises to invade his heart with the too-good-to-be-true news of Jesus, then indeed mission blessed.
I would encourage all disciples to refrain from calculating how to control a situation. God will always take us farther than our scanty imaginations. I’m most proud of my friends and those of you who see beyond the glares of sin to take action to love the sinful as Jesus does us…..Romans 5:1-11.