Rebuilding the Ancient Ruins

I was sitting in my car on West Side of Chicago last week, watching workmen restore this crumbling building back to its former beauty. It reminded me of Isaiah 58:12: “Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins; you shall raise up the foundations of buildings that have laid waste for many generations; and you shall be called repairer of the breach, restorer of streets to dwell in.”

Isaiah is talking about bringing a community back to life that has been in waste for many generations.  

When I think about the generations of people growing up in a harsh environment for many years, living a squashed dream, it helps me understand the mindset of those in survival mode—just trying to make it through one more day.

The West Side of Chicago is recognized for being an unpleasant part of town. Where lives are affected by the depressing view of the neighborhoods with low to no employment, then you have the subcultures of the streets where fortunes are sought after at a painful price.

The majority of the people on West Side grow up living in that condition on a daily basis with no hope of a future.

Nevertheless, there are some places where hope can be found. The discipleship house is one of those places right in middle of the neighborhood. The land may be worn out, but God’s people are alive and well. People are looking for personal change to take place, and the Gospel will bring that change into their lives. The environment is not dead here, nor can the community die as long as one person is willing to give his or her life over to the Good News.

We restore old cars, old trains, and old buildings—how much better can Jesus restore His people!

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ChicagoLarry Hope