As many of you know, it was my privilege to be asked to pray this past week at the Mount Prospect’s Walmart grand openings. There were two opportunities to pray. One was a private gathering with all of the associates and their families along with VIP’s from the city and state. The other was the grand opening to the community. Both were wonderful experiences. One Walmart associate commented after our prayer time that “it was like having church at work!”
What surprised me the most were the strong reactions I received from both believers and nonbelievers. Both sides felt free to offer both condemnation and praise. As a pastor I am used to navigating varying opinions, but the judgments I received this past week were especially intense.
I have felt the same strong opinions as we have planted our CLC Huntley campus in the Prime Outlet Mall. I believe these types of reactions come when we take our faith outside the walls of the church and into our community. The devil doesn’t mind if we hide out together and worship, but once we step out to impact the world all hell unleashes its fury.
Persecution should never stop us. Jesus said, “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 (NLT) Jesus also promises, “I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.” Matthew 16:18 (NLT)
This week take your faith outside the walls of the church. Share your testimony. Do something kind in Jesus’ name. Maybe have “church at work.” Stretch yourself. Be ready for opposition. And always remember, God is with you always and will give you the strength you need!