Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Out of the Comfort Zone

On Sunday, we rubbed shoulders with people of considerable means. On Monday, our choir of 49 walked dirt streets, weaving between houses made of mat or thin plywood, and rubbed shoulders with men and women whose clothes were tattered and whose children could have taken two baths and still left a ring in the tub--if there was a tub to be found, that is.

These good men were definitely out of their comfort zone. But they handled it well, believe me. Their hearts swelled with joy and thankfulness. One man strained to read his notes under the dim lights that characterize most indoor lighting in that community (it was dark by then); I told him, "I bet you never complain about the lighting in your church again." He laughed and assured me that his complaining days were over. Walking down those streets has a way of doing it.

One big man gave me a bruising hug, thanking me repeatedly. He kept speaking of how needy those people were. I told him that he had to look past their physical poverty and recognize that their spiritual poverty was a far greater problem.

In all, The Mississippi Singing Churchmen have now sung to more than 2,500 people. They have seen more than 50 professions of faith. Their ministry is impacting Lima; but the Churchmen are being impacted, too.

They left their comfort zone when they stepped off Delta Flight 335. They fell into a wonderland of strange sights and sounds when they drove out of the airport gates. Now some wonder why they did not do this sooner.

It's a good thing to leave your comfort zone. It does wonders for your faith level. Don't get stuck on a lower level; don't be content when God can take you farther.

Just purpose to step out of the comfort zone. But do it God's way. Heed the voice of Jesus and go where and when he says to go.

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