Sidewalk rainbows scrawled in chalk. Kids bouncing from one foot to the other as they excitedly ring doorbells...one, two, three times! Loud conversations from a nearby porch. The smell of barbecue down the street. Cars with soap and water running off until they shine.
The city comes alive in the summer. Sometimes in the winter you can walk down the street and see no one, but warm weather fills the houses until people spill out onto their porches and into the street. It is easy to spend hours with kids in the neighborhood and talking to adults who walk by. Ministry opportunities abound in the summertime.
But, along with the laughter there can also be flaring tempers. Violence becomes the next resort. People crowded together in the summer heat can get caught up in angry exchanges. Under the cover of darkness people seek an empty satisfaction in revenge. Pop! Pop! Pop! Gunfire becomes the solution. In the face of violence, ministry opportunities abound in the summertime.
Whether at a neighborhood cookout playing beanbag toss with laughing kids, or standing with neighbors in the wake of violence, there are so many opportunities to share Christ's love with our neighbors in the summer. Pray for our safety and for boldness to speak the love and truth of Christ to those around us. Pray for our neighbors' safety and for their hearts to be softened toward the Gospel. Pray for our summer programs and neighborhood cookouts to be successful in sharing with people the only One that can bring true joy and true healing...Jesus Christ.