The World I See

August is always such a busy month! In our home, August is also a special month filled with cake, ice cream, friends and presents. On August 7th, my daughter Molly turned 8 years old, and she’ll soon start third grade.

While most 8 year olds may be busy playing video games or riding bikes, Molly (like Belle, the princess she most loves) tends to have her nose stuck in a book. If not, she can be found writing her very own books complete with preface and author’s note.

Her latest book is titled “The World I See.”
In it, she talks about the world she sees: a world where people fight and argue with one another, a world where innocent people get hurt or even killed, and a world where so many children go to bed hungry. She then tries to imagine the kind of world God dreams to see: a world absent of chaos and hate, a world where innocent people go unharmed, and a world where the hungry have plenty to eat. Finally, the author’s note concludes: “Being a human isn’t easy. If you try to change the world…you will. And others will follow. I’m Molly and I won’t let anything stop me.”

At Our Towns Habitat, our vision is a God-sized vision: our vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. This vision is the heart of our work and the goal toward which we and our partners strive every single day. In the Old Testament, as far back as Genesis 12:3, God calls Abraham to leave his home, his family, everything he has ever known and go to an unknown land. As part of this radical call, God makes three promises to Abraham. First, Abraham will be given land, a land that God will show him. Second, Abraham and his family will become a great nation. And lastly, God says to Abraham, “in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” All the families, everyone, will be blessed by the faithfulness and righteousness of Abraham. Everyone.

In the New Testament, Jesus is found time and again eating and drinking, healing, and forgiving those who were considered the worst of the worst. Jesus ministers to everyone, regardless of age, race or nation, everyone.

Alan Hirsch, leader in the missional church movement, is known for writing, “It’s not so much that the church has a mission, it’s that the mission of God has a church.” The mission of God is loose in the world precisely because of the love of God for everyone. God’s mission of love, of service, of humility, of Kingdom building on earth as it is in heaven,–isn’t that the kind of world we long to see?

One home at a time, one family at a time, one board at a time, even one nail at a time, with every dollar so generously given and with every volunteer who steps foot on a build site, this is the world we are helping to build: a world where everyone has a decent place to live. By working together, and with the help of God, we can indeed change the world.