Help through the holidays

1 12 2017
We are helping families of those who are incarcerated, that we City Harbor Church serve weekly, with the Christmas holiday. (It’s a private effort by our volunteers who serve them year round.) If you would like to help please feel free to make a donation at http://cityharborchurch.com/give/
We are also giving shoes to the homeless and need Mens shoes sized 9 – 12.
There are many places providing ways to serve those in need over the holidays.
  • My favorites:
  • Manna House (serving the homeless daily) 25th & Greenmount (410) 889-3001
  • Ms Millie and A Mother’s Cry (serving the mothers of murder victims) (443) 303-6289
  • Somebody Cares (serving the homeless and those in other needs) Somebody Cares Baltimore Christmas contact Erin at erin@servethecity.org
  • Please consider the Whitelock Farm in your charitable efforts this month!
     Their work is an amazing part of service, good stewardship, and helping bring quality produce to others right here in Baltimore City.

Here’s a note from our brother Justin:

Dear Friends and Family, I am writing to ask to consider making a tax-deductible donation on Giving Tuesday, which is an annual day of generosity in which people are encouraged to give after spending on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  Your contribution will help me to pursue my personal fundraising goal of $2000 and to support the community programming of the farm.

Your donation will support the following community programs:

  • Educational partnerships with Dorothy I. Height Elementary School and Midtown Academy.
  • A youth internship program
  • Community workshops on topics such as basic gardening, composting, and food preservation
  • Community potlucks and community events

We need your help to continue to cultivate our community programming in 2018.  Please consider making a tax-deductible donation at the following link (even just $5, a little bit goes a long way!) to our campaign.

Thank you for your courageous generosity!




You can help!

29 09 2017

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.” – Proverbs 31:8-9 Please consider giving your time or donating your money to the following groups (whom I partner with) that are faithfully serving the primarily African American Baltimore City native population who have been underserved by educational inequality, landlords who did not remove lead poison, and other challenges that I did not face as a child. Manna House on 25th & Greenmount, A Mother’s Cry (443.303.6289), Somebody Cares Baltimore, Celebrate Recovery Inside (prison ministry), Helping Up Misson, Baltimore Teen Challenge, and the Whitelock Farm. LOVE GIVES. Please let us live this message.





August 2017

13 08 2017

Racism is wrong. The belief that one life has more value than another is wrong. Racism is more than just wrong, it is evil.

We’re on vacation, out of the normal flow of information, and my social media posts this week were previously scheduled. I logged into my sports news feed and saw news of white supremacy, violence, so much hatred. This news sent me on an emotional roller coaster of anger, pain, and lament. I cried. I prayed. At dinner, I talked it through with my family. My daughter is interested in World War 2 history. I mentioned that I saw a white guy pictured wearing a T-shirt with a quote from Hitler. We discussed how Christians allowed Hitler some of his political power, and the evil which came as a result. We discussed how each of us can feel like we are “better than” someone else, for any reason. We discussed how wrong that is, how to recognize it, repent of it, and make things right.

This week, as a family we are celebrating 7 years in Baltimore. We moved 7 years ago this week. In that time we have learned more about the African American experience and become aware of just how much more we have yet to learn. In that time white people have responded to my social media posts by saying that racism isn’t a problem in America anymore. White people have commented on how minorities should think, feel, or act. This is offensive to me.

I have, and I will, continue to confess my wrongs, seek forgiveness, and to make amends. I will also do the same for those who identify me with those who are responsible for their pain….white, male, husband, father, pastor.

I have, and I will, continue to call white male husband father pastors to repentance for the sin in their hearts.

White people, in particular, must ask, “What circumstances have caused white supremacists to feel safe to demonstrate in this way again?”

On a personal level, last week I posted the following thoughts which seem relevant today:

How might our world be different if we gave time and energy to loving people with acts of service and praying for them?

People are to be embraced not endured, loved not tolerated, given grace & mercy, not coexistence, a place at our table not crumbs from the table.

Jesus spoke of mercy and truth, spirit and word, not neglecting one for the other. Love compels us to think deeply about how we should pray and what action we should take for the benefit of our brothers and sisters who are now being treated as “less than”.

 





love in prayer and action

3 08 2017

How might our world be different if we gave time and energy to loving people with acts of service and praying for them?

People are to be embraced not endured, loved not tolerated, given grace & mercy, not coexistence, a place at our table not crumbs from the table.

Jesus spoke of mercy and truth, spirit and word, not neglecting one for the other. Love compels us to think deeply about how we should pray and what action we should take for the benefit of our brothers and sisters who are now being treated as “less than”.





Questions for Good Friday

14 04 2017

Here are questions that I suggest we consider. Each has a Scripture reference to read. This study has been a strength to me. I pray that you find it a help to you as well.

 

What does sin do to our relationship with God? Isaiah 59:1-2

 

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Describe our desperate condition and God’s response? Romans 3:9-20, 23-25

 

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What did Jesus’ sacrificial death do for us?

 

Romans 5:9________________________________________________________________________________

 

Ephesians 1:7_______________________________________________________________________________

 

Ephesians 2:13______________________________________________________________________________

 

1 John 1:7__________________________________________________________________________________

 

Revelation 1:5_______________________________________________________________________________

 

What did Jesus do for us on the cross? 1 Peter 2:24  ________________________________________________

 

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What makes Jesus unique that He can do this for us? Colossians 1:13-23  _______________________________

 

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What is the significance of Jesus’ resurrection? Romans 4:25  ________________________________________

 

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What does God do when He rescues us from our state of spiritual death? Ephesians 2:4-6

 

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What happens when we receive Jesus as Lord and Savior John 1:12-13  ________________________________

 

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Is it possible to be saved by the good things we do? How are we saved? Ephesians 2:8-9  __________________

 

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What does God’s grace teach the believer? Titus 2:11-12  ____________________________________________

 

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What did Jesus say to those who believed in Him? Matthew 16:24  _____________________________________

 

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What did you learn from this lesson? How will you apply it to your life?___________________________________

 

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Thank you to the Purple Book from Steve Murrell and Rice Broocks.





A Baltimore murder in NYC

23 03 2017

This week there is news of a murder committed by a neighbor of ours, who went to NYC and carried out a vicious act of senseless violence. We did not know him. Honestly, I don’t recall ever seeing him. It seems that he has made statements of “hate for black people” as the motive for his crime.

I have yet to meet a little child with hate in their heart for people with a different skin color. God did not create us that way. Anger is dangerous. Evil is real.

It is my belief that we are of one human race. God created ethnic traits as a beautiful expression of his creativity that are to be celebrated. We can create culture out of our identity, each of us created in the image of God.

Yes it’s true, God notices murder. He notices each one. He saw the first murder and he said that the “blood cried out to him from the ground”. Our Father God made it clear from the beginning that this should not be.

We see in Psalm 34:18 that God is close to the brokenhearted. We believe that God is alive, aware, able, and active. We believe that God can bring a miracle of grace and peace even in the face senseless violence.
As a white man, I have confessed, repented of, and sought forgiveness of my own sins and many times done the same for the sins of other white men.
Let each of us do the same. Let us then pray the prayer of Jesus toward others, “Father forgive them.”
It is time for us to pray for each person affected by each murder.
Sadly in Baltimore this is something that we pray about every week.
Please join me in prayer:
May each person who commits a murder repent of their sins turn to Jesus and find forgiveness and New Life.
May each family member, neighbor, friend impacted by murder receive the miracle peace that’s available through Jesus may we draw closer to each other.
May we get to know each other better.
May we love God with all our heart and we love our neighbor in the same way that he first loved us.
May we see an end to murder, here, now.




walk and talk this weekend

24 02 2017

Baltimore friends, has there ever been a better weekend for us to walk our streets, meet our neighbors, talk and listen to each other? It’s beautiful outside and someone needs to see your smile! After last night, we now have 50 murders (last year at this time there were just 34). Time for us to pray more than before. Let’s ask God for mercy and a stop to the violence. Let’s ask Father God what He would have us do, here and now with specifics. Today I enjoyed time with non-profit, business, and church leaders…hearing from them how they are responding. We are not alone. Good things are happening this week!