Church Not For Us But For Others
The me-centeredness of individual Christians can lead to the us-centeredness of a church community just as easily. When we attend the same church for a while, we begin to take ownership of the church with all good intentions and want to make sure our church grows to be a great church in the area. At times, however, we begin to build our church that is slowly becoming detached from the greater vision of God’s kingdom here on earth. In short, we become our-church-focused to such a degree that we neglect the will of God for the surrounding community, the neighbors, and the world at large. Yes, we do ask our neighbors to come visit us and see what we have to offer, but we’ve slowly stopped going into the world as the salt and light of God’s blessing. For Peter and his fellow leaders, especially, shifting the focus from building a church for a particular ethnic group to building a church for all people has been both challenging but just as rewarding.
What this means at ACC now:
ACC has intentionally placed itself in the heart of Santa Ana, a community of vastly different ethnicity than the most of its current members. If the goal was to grow the church in number as quickly as possible, a different choice might have been made. However, as God has led us through a series of changes, we believe we are in Santa Ana to learn and live out the profound and mysterious truth of becoming a church together with those who come from different backgrounds. It has been a real learning experience, but with two other churches that we share the building with - Lao Evangelical Church and Ministerios De Dios Latinoamericanos - we are looking forward to a more fruitful partnership in representing the name of Jesus Christ in both word and deed.