Incarnation

Incarnation is one of the strongest pillars the gospel has to offer: that God himself became a man and lived among us.

Incarnation is also one of the strongest demands of the gospel: if God has loved us enough to fully immerse himself in our world, then we as Christ-followers have no reason to hold ourselves back. The goal of the Christian life is not escaping this world, although the temptation to do so takes many forms, and it’s easy to get off track.

I’m wondering today if I might be a little off track.

When Matt and I first moved to this apartment, one of our goals was incarnation – we prayerfully chose to move from a basement apartment in a rich neighbourhood to a building near our church that people tend to not move in to. We did not come here to be saints – the relationship with our former landlady had soured, and Matt’s commute was almost an hour by transit, so there were practical reasons for moving closer, but our hearts’ desire was also to contribute to transformation in our neighbourhood by our presence.

Three and a half years later, a lot has changed. We have a baby, a car, and this neighbourhood feels like home. Many of our neighbours have changed, but many have stayed the same and we enjoy recognizing familiar faces at the mall, walking the dog around the block, and taking the elevator. But sometimes I get restless. The property management company has made several improvements in our building and won the right to raise our rent above the annual guideline amount, so last year we saw a number of long-term neighbours move out because they could buy property on a mortgage that cost less than rent. Matt and I have been talking about trying to do the same – find a condo or small townhouse that we could use to build equity instead of just watching our rent money disappear.

One day, I think the time for that will come. But today I still live here, and I am convicted that daydreaming about life with a mortgage is not how I should be spending my time. We have lived where we do for long enough to have some credibility, to have real relationships that we can pour into, and I don’t want to waste that. I hope that whether we are here for 6 months or 5 years, we can be fruitful and do good for our neighbours. I am inspired that we moved here for a purpose that has not yet been fulfilled: to do everything we can to live as lights for God’s kingdom.

If you are a person who prays, would you pray for Matt and I that we will have a clear vision of how to be good neighbours?

Jeremiah 29:4-7 – This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce.Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. Also, seekthe peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”

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Stories » Moving With God 21-01-2014, 20:10

[…] A friend on facebook posted an article about this ad campaign to help single mothers, and I think it really relates to my last post on incarnation. […]

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