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Escaping the Christian Ghetto - If I can anyone can!

To borrow a turn of phrase from the apostle Paul -  If anyone else thinks they have reasons for being trapped in the Christian Ghetto, I have more.  I have been a Christian basically all my life, my family are Christians, most if not all of my friends are Christians, I work in a church and so I am paid to interact with Christians, and even when I do professional development it is with Christian training organisations.

As a Christian I have the privilege of being a witness for the good news of Jesus Christ, yet it is impossible to be an effective witness to non Christians if I am caught in a Christian Ghetto.

This year by God's grace that has started to change for me and I am sharing some of my experiences in the hope that you may be encouraged that God can break you out as well.  The process started with a recognition that I was in the ghetto and needed to get out.  It involved praying and some unsuccessful attempts to get into a local sporting team.  Then I was prompted by God to work with some others from our church to connect with international students.  It was something that we had talked about previously but God gave me a push to take action.  For the last 4 months we have been doing social activities and English as a second language classes with a whole group of international students.  It has been great, we have been able to help people and share our lives including our relationship with Jesus.  In this process, God has used each our giftings to bring it about - one of our team is really good at making contacts, another is good at hospitality, and I have some strengths in teaching.  It has also required effort - to make time in my schedule (and for my family to release me), and money for transport and hospitality etc.  I have also noticed that the breakthrough in this one area has led to a greater engagement with non Christians in other parts of my life.

Here are some reflections on my experience:
  • Pray and ask God to help you break out
  • If at first you don't succeed try again
  • Follow the prompting of the Holy Spirit
  • Look for people that are open to you (people of peace)
  • Look to do it with other people that have different giftings that complement yours
  • Be willing to invest time, money and effort

If God can break me out of the Christian Ghetto, He can do it for anyone!

David Wanstall, 18/11/2009