The Heart of it All

One of the many unique things about Mariners’ Church is the fact it is situated in the heart of all that goes on in Detroit.  Every year we have concerts, the Grand Prix, the Marathon, and protests, all just outside our doors.  One of the biggest events to happen in a long time is the upcoming NFL Draft.  Next week (April 25-27), the city is expecting well over 200,000 fans, from all over the country. Many will pass right in front of our historic building.

Campus Martius and Hart Plaza are being transformed as we speak. As I walk downtown these days, enormous outdoor structures are going up in record time, sidewalks and grass have been replaced, flowers planted, and banners hung.  The NFL website says fans can “visit immersive exhibits and sponsor activations; take photos with the Vince Lombardi Trophy; enjoy the youth-focused Play 60 Zone;…and score autographs from current NFL players and Legends at the Autograph Stage”. The draft itself will be broadcasted live at Campus Martius, on stadium like screens.

The church doors will be open Thursday and Saturday for prayer and tours from 12-5pm, with a 30 minute prayer service each day at 2:30pm.  I invite you to join us, here at the church, as we welcome people passing by, and invite them into our building to pray, if they want. If you want more details, you can reply to this email or call the office (313-259-2206).

So, what is really at the ‘heart of it all’? Always being open to whatever God wants to do. This is not about showing off our building, and just having a fun event.  Our motivation is to display God’s Glory and Love to others in every opportunity we have.  We always want to be attuned to the Holy Spirit and led by Him. You may have opportunities to have a heart to heart conversation right here, in front of the church, at Campus Martius, at the grocery store in your neighborhood, or a work event.

God is everywhere, and He is always with you. Lean in, and make a habit of listening to His voice. If you find it intimidating to talk to strangers, start by asking God to fill your heart with His love for them. We don’t know people’s stories, but God does. When we open ourselves up to be a channel of His love, things change. The Spirit moves in you first, and you no longer focus on yourself, but His love for you and the person He brings your way.

This is not about doing something for God. This is about the beauty of loving others with God. In his letter to the Corinthians, the apostle Paul, when teaching about the ministry of reconciliation, wrote a few truths worthy of our attention today.

For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. Working together with him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain.  2 Corinthians 5:14–16a, 18-20a, 6:1 (ESV)

We have been entrusted with the ministry of reconciliation. We are ambassadors for Christ. Let’s take some time to meditate on this reality. May he fill you with His Peace and Joy as you remember: “It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.” (Gal. 2:20). What a privilege to work together with Him in advancing His Kingdom.

The NFL Draft is just another opportunity to live out a calling we have in our everyday lives. Let us pray for this amazing opportunity to share His Love and shine His Glory!

Even if you are not able to physically join us at the church, let us all set time aside to pray for the safety of our city, and all of those visiting. You can start right now. Let us pray for the Spirit to move in ways that only He can. And, may we be open to move everyday in whatever direction the Lord leads us!

Blessings and peace,

Rev. Todd and Dr. Christiane