“…that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe… May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me.” ~John 17:20-23
We believe that it is God’s will that all his children, all disciples of his Son, be reconciled. We think God’s great desire is for all Christians to be brought together as a powerful witness to the world of his love and peace. Praise God for the ecumenical spirit of the Central Church of Christ toward our brothers and sisters in other Christian churches in our city! Thank the Lord for the willingness here — the eagerness! — to unite with other Christ-followers for the sake of our city.
Our first “4 Amarillo” effort with the other downtown churches is underway. Together with First Baptist, First Presbyterian, and Polk Street Methodist, we are collecting and delivering school supplies to four of our neighborhood elementary schools. We’re bringing the pencils and notebooks and binders to our respective worship assemblies this coming Sunday. Then we’re putting all the supplies together at Polk Street on Thursday to sort and sack them for delivery to our schools the following week. The plan is to deliver the supplies to the teachers at Bivins, Sunrise, San Jacinto, and Margaret Wills; cater breakfast for the teachers and staff; and then pray for them and with them before we leave.
This “4 Amarillo” thing we’re doing is a whole lot bigger than just boxes of Crayons and Scotch tape. This is so much more than providing Ziploc baggies and composition books for teachers to make available to the kids in our church neighborhood who can’t afford them. This is also very much about Christian evangelism. It’s about expressing the Gospel in ways that will convict our world of the power and love of God. Our partnership with these other churches is an outward expression of the eternal reality that, in Christ Jesus, we have all been perfectly united. It’s the same blood of our Savior that courses through our spiritual veins and our spiritual bodies. It’s the same Holy Spirit who indwells all those who confess Jesus as Lord. We are one in Christ.
And it’s this unity that will prove to the city of Amarillo that Jesus really is who he says he is and who we say he is. Our unflinching dedication to love and defend all our Christian brothers and sisters who claim Christ as Lord and have submitted to that lordship will astonish the world. Our cooperation together as one group of disciples for the sake of the children in Amarillo will force our world to acknowledge that Jesus really does offer something different, something this world could never accomplish on its own.
“4 Amarillo” is about our four churches breaking down the walls, putting aside the differences, to unite for the sake of our city. We believe this partnership between denominations will be a powerful witness to our city that Jesus really is the Prince of Peace, that he really does possess the will and the power to reconcile and unite.
Please join us in this first official endeavor. Join us in prayer, in collecting school supplies, in packing bags, in blessing our city for the sake of Christ, for his purposes, to his eternal glory and praise.