Cause Célèbre

I’m by nature averse to attention.  Not that I don’t want it, it’s just that I’m not comfortable when I receive it.  A hopefully-healthy understanding of my profoundly flawed and inadequate nature makes me quick to point out the contributions of others, and especially God, whenever anyone reaches out to give me a pat on the back.  It’s sort of a psychological karate – imagine Ralph Macchio using the wax on, wax off routine with compliments instead of bullies.  

Hope you enjoyed the 80’s movie reference.  I know I did.
Our church garden, as well as the unusual story of one of our 90-year old members taking in a young family that was prepared to be homeless, has made the front page of the county newspaper.  The hard-link to the extended story is here.  
It’s great, because it’s wonderful that some of our folks who are doing wonderful, amazing things in terms of giving and sharing of themselves with those in need, are getting well-deserved kudos.  It’s also hard, from the theological perspective, because this sort of thing should be the norm, not the exception.  I know there are millions of Christians doing similar acts of service every day who go unnoticed.  What often is noticed (by me, as well as those outside the church) is how often big churches are intently focused on navel gazing and taking care of their next building project rather than taking care of the least of these.  
I wonder how quickly the papers and nightly news would grow weary of reporting on the acts of kindness and generosity of churches, if every church began intentionally supporting those in their communities most vulnerable to the ups and downs of economic cycles.  We’re doing so little, really, and yet it makes a big splash.  What if this was one of our primary means of building relationships to share the Gospel with others in our community?
It would be fun to see the blitz of media coverage (assuming it happened, of course).  But it would be even more exciting when the coverage stopped, because it was just too routine to report on any more.  

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