Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Coming to the Table

Posted by Tim

"And [the believers] devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles." - Acts 2:42, 43

This house can feel like an island sometimes. It is amazing how we can shout a word like "community" and yet feel so lonely all at once. Perhaps one of the more subtle dangers of intentional living is unintentionally shutting everyone else out. Learning to love one another, serve one another, and forgive one another is a very time-consuming habit, and the ramifications for failing to do so are damning. But if we get to the point where our only communication with the Church outside our walls comes through blog posts, then we have failed to be good disciples of Jesus.

Shortly following Pentecost the Church in Jerusalem was exploding. Beyond the 3,000 who repented following Peter's sermon, Luke says that people were being added to their number daily. The first glimpse we are given into the lives of the young church reveals this: they were devoted to teaching, worshipping, breaking bread, and praying. And as a result, many wonders and signs were performed. The Gospel of the New Kingdom was tearing through the city.

We want to see change like this in Springfield. We have read and listened to great teachers. We are committed to worshipping, praying, and serving with our local church. But are we devoted to breaking bread together? And we aren't talking about a potluck here. Luke says in Acts 2:46 that they were breaking bread in their homes. How often do we open up our home? This was a defining characteristic of the early church, and it is a lost practice among Western believers. The freedom to gather publicly has allowed us to shield a large part of ourselves from one another: our home lives. This is the place where we are most comfortable and most truly ourselves. Where am I more likely to get to know you: in a pew or at the dinner table? Which is more disarming?

Perhaps it has been laziness. Perhaps it has been a fear that people will see more of our brokeness. For whatever reason, we have done a poor job of opening up our home and our table to our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are done with that. If you are in the area, or are going to be close by, please invite yourself over to the Mulberry House for dinner. We love having guests. We just didn't realize how much Jesus wants that too.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Land acquired

The abandoned lot beside our house on Mulberry street has officially
been reclaimed.

This morning at 10:00am, we purchased the first tract of land at
auction. We will not call ourselves the new owners of the land, but we
are certainly its new caretakers.

Willing co-conspirators take note: we are just getting started in this
transforming work. Expect some opportunities to help in the near

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Glorious Return to the Blog!

Yes, we know.

This blog has not exactly been hopping with activity lately.

We hope to change that in the near future.


The Unveiling of the Plan

Posted by Jack

As many of you are aware, some of us here are in the process of creating a new park in our neighborhood. An abandoned lot next door to us is going up for tax auction this week and we hope to acquire it.

Here is the skeleton outline of our plans for the project. Take a look at them, and let us know how you want to be involved!

PHASE 1: Reclaiming the Land

Nearly complete... will continue over the coming months

PHASE 2: Redeeming the Land - FALL 2010

We will spend the fall of 2010 cleaning up the lot. This will include tree removal, brush removal, filling holes, removing garbage, stones, etc... the general sprucing up of the land. Not only will this prepare the land for future development, but it will improve the present look of the block and generate momentum for the next steps...

PHASE 3: Plotting and Scheming- WINTER 2010

We will spend the winter months conspiring with others regarding the actual plans for the piece of property. We will survey neighbors, area residents, and community leaders about their desires for this project. We will create a small steering committee and nail down some solid plans about the park that is to be born in our neighborhood.

PHASE 4: Planting the Seeds- SPRING 2011 and BEYOND

Beginning in the spring, we will develop the land. Beautiful plant life will begin to blossom where it did not blossom before. New structures will pop up, perhaps playgrounds or shelter-houses or basketball hoops. Curious bystanders will begin to slow down as they pass, noticing significant progress. With the spring will come new life, and the park will continue to grow and change.


We will delight in this newly redeemed land among our neighbors and friends as the keys of this park are turned back over to the community!