Dear AGRM Members and Friends,
The parks, alleys, underpasses, and riverbanks of our cities are the primary gathering places for those who find themselves outside the circles of sufficiency and normalcy—and, more often than not, outside the circle of faith. But sooner or later these people come to our missions and like ministries, desperately needing help and hope. Exactly how we respond to them speaks volumes about our understanding of biblical hospitality and the path to human flourishing.
Colossians 4:5 says, “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.” Launching from this directive, pastor and author John Piper wrote these words: “Wisdom is knowing what to do for the glory of God when the rulebook runs out. It’s knowing how to become all things to all men without compromising holiness and truth. It is creativity and tact and thoughtfulness. It’s having a feel for the moment, and having an eye for what people need and want.”
Our course of action in city mission ministry is being scrutinized more than ever before. Are we fresh and focused on transformation? Are we compassionate and erring on the side of grace? Are we creative and striking down ineffective paradigms? Government is watching. Next-generation leaders are watching. Donors are watching. God is watching.
In Milwaukee, just a couple of blocks from the city’s intriguing RiverWalk, we’ll explore what it means for us to walk in wisdom as we move our missions forward in a culture where there are constant concussions from the collisions of world views. We’ll examine biblical truth and apply it to the challenges we face as we seek to be the hands and feet of Jesus every day.
John Ashmen, AGRM President