Running the Narrow Race

By: Lawrence Kim - Outreach Worker in Kingston-Galloway

What a first month! I feel like I've spent a year at Kingston-Galloway already. Through this one month, I have gone from utterly inexperienced and incapable of running our programs, and though I have a long way to go in terms of experience, I feel like I can face the rollercoaster highs and lows each day of programs brings.

Looking back, I think comfort in life is definitely an important aspect for all people, but especially Christians to consider. North American culture teaches us that comfort is the dream, to seek and live in gratification is the prize. A great job, big house(s), fancy cars, nice clothes and adoration; such things compose the gospel of the west.

But this is not what Jesus teaches his would-be followers. Certainly those things are good things that God had intended for us to enjoy with temperance, but they were never to be the greatest thing. Rather, we are taught: "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me."

There are so many instances where I feel I can say, 'oh well, we tried' or choose not to rouse a touchy conversation or decide not to correct a kid behaving out of line. But if I'm to be honest, God and I both know the wide and comfortable road leads to destruction.

Over the course of the past month, so many days I have felt that I can't do this anymore, this is too much for me. I can't help these kids in any way-I want to be comfortable back at home where I could manage things. And I was absolutely right. Maybe I can teach a child to manage his explosive anger, or to help a kid stop crying, but I know I can't bring about the heart transformation that is the impetus of Toronto City Mission.

What I've been learning at Kingston-Galloway during September is that while I can't effect any long-term changes, God can do all these things and far more. Like Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David and Jesus, have demonstrated, God's call for us is scarce to be found in our comfort zones. He calls us to follow like lambs amongst wolves, to trust in His strength and not our own, and we will in time see the sheer wonder of His great plans unfolding.

Recalling this each day, I don't want to rest on yesterday's laurels or failings. No, I want to beat on, because God will be known in this hard place! Onwards, to the prize!