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Be a Community Changer – The Power of Six

Serving Our NeighborsKey Bible Verse: When you refused to help the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were refusing to help me”  –Matthew 25:45

Bonus Reading: Acts 17:1-9

Dave Kella moved to Little Rock when he was promoted to lead IBM-Arkansas. He and five other men from our church began exploring how to connect the deep needs of the inner-city poor with the metropolitan area’s enormous resources.

Touring a private Christian school in one of the worst sections, they observed how well-mannered, hungry to learn, and hopeful these often-neglected children were. As important as the funding and programs were, they concluded, the key was changing people.

These six soon became a board, unleashing their bent toward creativity, management, and networking to do the work of the kingdom. The same school—once crippled by poor infrastructure and inability to fund teachers and parent tuition discounts—is now blossoming with an enrollment of more than 1,000. The efforts of Dave and his partners, down to one-on-one mentoring of some students, lie behind the progress.

In 2000 the board—now the Christian Educational Assistance Foundation—hired a full-time director. In 2001, in tandem with a national scholarship organization, the foundation gave away more than 1,500 educational scholarships to poor children throughout Arkansas.

—Robert Lewis in The Church of Irresistible Influence

My Response: What can I learn about stimulating change from Dave’s example?

Thought to Apply: There is only one, very uncomfortable test of the extent of our love for him: How have we handled the poor?  —Michael Green (British theologian)

Adapted from The Church of Irresistible Influence (Zondervan, 2001)

Prayer for the Week: Lord, help us believers serve our neighbors in ways that make them thirsty for the Gospel.

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