One thing that I love about The City @ Good Hope is the love for missions. I believe it is a proven fact that the gospel is the power of God to save lives, & that The City takes that truth to the nations. Sometimes it seems that our community of unashamed gospel proclaimers are of the few pursuing to impact the culture around them with the Good News of Jesus Christ … but, after watching the video above, I began to realize that our mission & vision is not so isolated.
We do not re-invent the wheel, we merely carry out the great commission. In this season of graduations & summer departures, I am excited about how the gospel will be shared. It is about time that The City begins to disperse and reach others. Truth be told, there are many people in The City who can plant gospel small groups that would impact many. Perhaps we are not ready for planting churches, but we can plant seeds of the gospel in churches that do not preach the gospel.
One thing I respect about PT, like Leonce Crump, is that he saw a problem & decided to do something about it. By no means is Good Hope a perfect church & it is in desperate need of the gospel. PT saw a problem & entered the culture to fix it. On one hand there are the old timers who know everything (self-righteous folk). On the other hand, there are liberal college students exploring their sexuality/identity/personality (prodigal sons & daughters). On top of that, you have the young rambunctious youth whom have no hope in this world (lil’ heathens). The one antidote to give these people is the gospel.
With such a diverse group of people at Good Hope, DZ Cofield commissioned PT to reach young adults so that they will in turn reach 3rd ward. In some facet, PT planted a church-within-a-church. The City works as a tool to reach those older self-righteous folk who are native “3rd wardians” by being unashamed of their youth & respectful towards them. Reaching out to the community is a big deal & Cuney Homes is a people group in need of some lovin’. The City reaches the young adults by knowing what’s sexy at the moment and not rejecting or embracing it but reconciling it for the sake of the gospel. Also, the college crowd is reached by using technology & creating small groups for the sake of people sharing life together. The City reaches the lil’ heathens by participating in Youth Church as volunteers for interpersonal small groups.
This gospel is so powerful that there is nothing else to talk about. Please don’t confuse the gospel for a method, but embrace it as what the bible says it is. It is of first importance and we are to preach Christ crucified. Jesus died according to the scriptures so that the promise of God to save those who would turn from death and embrace life by faith alone & grace alone. Jesus rose according to the scriptures so that those whom embrace the life he offers will have an advocate in heaven who will never disown them before his Father.
All in all, The City & many other churches are a place where you can believe the gospel, belong to a gospel believing community, and become gospel-centered.
[if you are looking for a gospel-centered church near you check out the gospel coalition’s network guide here.]
this is where strangers become ex-strangers. this is why i am inspired daily. because strangers don’t have to carry that badge for the rest of their lives if we just make an attempt to make them ex-strangers.
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31).
june 2nd, 2010. russel de pena (left) and ronald bell sr. (right) each received their licenses to preach the gospel from the pastoral-eldership (is that the correct term? lol) at good hope missionary baptist church. it was a glorious evening. most to all of the sons of hope (ministry that serves the church to equip those who feel the call to preach) were present and in support of the brothers. it was great. the word of God was proclaimed. russ hit that acts 1:8. ron on that psalm 54.
david, dennis, kathy, zach, and i then decided to head to subway for a quick fellowship action. after the lazy workers closed the place half an hour early on their own will God sovereignly closed the subway off of scott early, we then trucked to the one off of ost by jack in the crack. we got our food around 9:50 (thanks zach lol). since the joint closes shop at 10 we decided to try to eat inside the dining area of jack in the crack. that was sovereignly closed. we then posted up outside and ate and chatted.
then came eric johnson. poor in finances but rich in spirit. he asked me and zach what our shirt said. we told him, “maGoh … it stands for man after God’s own heart.” eric replied, “oh i’m saved too.” was he. what started as a humble plea for help, quickly turned into practical preaching, transparent testimony, familiarizing himself with family, and an overall pure display of joyful joy that stems from God’s grace.
he preached a word to me, and the rest of us i’m sure, but i can only speak for myself, and i was convicted. he spoke of premarital sex. worry. God’s divine plan of reconciliation. patience. God’s creation. etc. the man PREACHED! without a license 😉
full of love. honesty. zeal. hope. patience. faith. peace. is the Holy Spirit that resides in eric johnson – and us too!
i can’t express enough to a crowd of people how vital it is to reach out to the community we live in. mission trips are not limited to traveling to a foreign country, instead they are vehicles we need to utilize to the people that are right down the street from us starving physically and most importantly, spiritually.
we got a chance to talk with these two men for more than 30 minutes about life in general. it’s so refreshing to hear people speak to you about what they’ve been through and what they have been delivered from.
we came back a week later with the needs he asked for and his tone was filled with shock. he didn’t think we would follow through, he said, “thank you for thinking of me.” just a thought of someone is like handing them a big box filled with every answered prayer they’ve prayed to God. to witness the reaction was uplifting. the way God moves is so inspiring.
police officer rolled through wondering what was going on when he saw a crowd of people hanging on the corner doing a video shoot in remembrance of a 14-year-old high school male that was shot for an unruly reason.
after watching them shoot, i felt so intimidated. i thought to myself, “these people are probably thinking ‘who do these people think they are trying to tell us how to live a good life when they don’t know half the stuff we’ve been through?'” i held a heavy weight of fear and timidity, that is the spirit Christ did not give us. He gave us a spirit of power, love and sound judgment to preach the Gospel with His confidence in an attempt to make disciples of ALL people. well, i didn’t feel it that day.
by the grace of God, the Good News of Jesus Christ did not go unspoken that day. God spoke loudly through our brother Troy. people were staring at him, wanting to walk away but were pulled in by the power God exhibited through him. it was amazing. i could not believe his boldness. if you could feel the emotions and the sincere desire he demonstrated that day to complete strangers, proclaiming the Love Jesus has for each and every soul out there, you would not have walked away the same.
again, i cannot express to you all how important it is to reach out to your community. let people know that you care. let people know that there IS hope. it is not about what people think or what people might say. it is all about bringing people to the Cross. salvation is crucial. knowing where your body and soul will be once you are dead is so important.
if you are interested in going out to Cuney Homes on Saturdays at 12 p.m., please let us know!!!
sunday, october 10th, 2010, the sermon my ears and many others received was one of change. a sermon preached of hope. i was so blessed by the Word from God, i thought it would be unfair to not share it with you all!
How to Get Up After You’ve Been Down.
John 5:1-15; Selected Scriptures
D.Z. Cofield, Th.M.,D. Min.
October 10, 2010
1. You must come to grips with your situation. (v. 1-5)
John 5:1-5 (NKJV) – After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porches. In these lay a great magnitude of sick people, blind, lame, paralyzed, waiting for the moving of the water. For an anger went down at a certain time into the pool and stirred up the water; then whoever stepped in first, after the stirring of the water, was made well of whatever disease he had. Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years.
Bethesda – house of kindness/mercy.
How do you know you are in bad shape? Two things can help you figure is out:
A. Look at where you are – look at your personal condition and acknowledge it.
B. Look at who is around you – if you are surrounded by debbie downers, you will become just like them.
2. The Lord know where you are and what you are facing. (v. 6a)
John 5:6 (NKJV) – When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew the he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”
Psalm 103:13 (NLT) – the LORD is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
3. You must decide if you want to remain hurt or be made whole. (v. 6b-7)
John 5:6-7 (NKJV) – When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew the he already had
been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me in the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.”
Three issues Jesus knew this man had to deal with.
A. Company he was keeping – you have to be willing to leave sick people behind.
B. Contentment with where he was.
C. Counting on the wrong people – why would you rely on people who can’t even help themselves?
from this message, i received an eye opening deliverance that i pray will pass on to you. God asks us if we want to be made whole – He gives us a chance to answer no or to answer yes. we have been given the keys to our own prison doors. will we choose to remain slaves to the shortcomings in our lives or will we allow Gods power and love to set us free?
He’s asking you, “Do you want to be made well?”
*i will never forget the day my brothers received their preachers license at Good Hope Missionary Baptist Church, thanks to be our Heavenly Father! i have witnessed a true transformation in the lives of each of them because they decided to present themselves nakedly to our Lord Jesus in order to be washed clean of the world they once were clothed in. Jesus is the Hope and Change that we all can believe in, i am a witness.*
daring, extroverted, dedicated, and zany.
these distinctive characteristics have been placed in a dead zone
that implores their burial in a coffin of past sin which once flowed
fluidly beneath their flesh in the streams of their cold, blue blood.
these distinctive characteristics have entered a dead zone
which contains the living fruit of self-control, gentleness, faithfulness and goodness
awaiting their embrace and acceptance through faith.
these distinctive characteristics have decreased to microscopic
decibels of nothing under a telescopic view from their gracious
Creator who lent His fingers to create such a creation for His own glory.
these distinctive characteristics have chosen to lay their lives down
in a world that teaches to stand alone, to be known by all, to collect accolades
upon accolades upon acts of praises of ones self.
these distinctive characteristics have been mended from fragments of worthlessness
to potential monuments that beam with a Light so bright, one is drawn to look
for its source, which is Christ.
these distinctive characteristics have chosen to be a living sanctuary
for the living Word to flourish and fulfill their inner being
traveling with a sweet Spirit filled with amazing grace.
delightful, edifying, dynamic, and zealous.
these are the distinctive characteristics of the D-E-D-Z-O-N-E.