One morning, fifteen years ago, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and said, “Who do you want to attend your church?”
My life, at the time, was okay – not great – just okay. I had a small preaching and prophetic ministry, worked at a Christian book store, and did some writing. Even though I was a small potato, I had a heart for the inner cities of America.
But yet, I was stuck in a town with 2,900 Swedes, Norwegians, and Germans. Blond haired and blue eyed white people. A million miles from the inner cities.
So, when the Holy Spirit asked me the question, I decided to take my time answering it. It was one of those water-shed moments. No sense in being weighed down by a hasty answer.
Throughout the day, I thought of all the possibilities until I focused in on David and his men:
David therefore departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam. And when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. And everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was discontented gathered to him. So he became captain over them. And there were about four hundred men with him. (1 Samuel 22:1-2)
At 5 p.m. that day, I went home and bowed next to my bed. “Lord, if You will give me the grace, then these are the people that I want in my church. Send me murderers, thieves, drug dealers, homosexuals, lesbians, alcoholics, drug addicts, gang members, and all of the other dregs of society. Because if You pour out Your grace on these people,they will know that it is Your grace, and Your grace alone, that allows them to do great works for You. When the tough battles hit our nation, these people will not run off, but will stand and fight the good fight of faith against the rulers of darkness.”
Now these were the heads of the mighty men whom David had, who strengthened themselves with him in his kingdom, with all Israel, to make him king, according to the word of the Lord concerning Israel. (1 Chronicles 11:10)