By Karen Garrett
The Brethren Revival Fellowship (BRF) held its dinner meeting on Tuesday, July 5, during the 2011 Annual Conference in Grand Rapids, Mich. Again this year a large number of people gathered for fellowship, food, music, and inspiration. The Zumbrum Singers, a female quartet from Blue River Church of the Brethren in Northern Indiana District, brought the musical part of the meeting.
Jordan Keller, a licensed minister from Lewiston (Maine) Church of the Brethren, brought the message on “Hope in the Darkness.” He began by sharing some of his experiences after he moved to Lewiston to minister to unchurched families. He related the fascination of neighbors with his garden in the front yard of his house. The garden is in the front yard because they have no backyard, he explained.
He rescued a basketball hoop from being scrapped and put it in his driveway. Now on any given day there may be as many as 15 people shooting baskets, and at the same time witnessing his lifestyle.
Keller also related the story of a day when one of his Muslim neighbors came to his house asking if he did towing. Her car had broken down and she needed help. In the process of finding out that her problem was more than he could fix, he discovered his reputation in the neighborhood. Apparently when she mentioned her problem to another neighbor, they told her, “Go to that house, it is a house of help, a safe house.”
Keller challenged those in attendance to be that kind of safe house.
He concluded by comparing Christ’s light through us as similar to that of a lighthouse. In a lighthouse, the lamp is in the center and is lit at all times. Christ is our “center lamp.” There are special lenses in a lighthouse glass to focus the light in a way that provides the most protection. We are to be like those lenses, Keller said, so we can focus Christ’s light for others to see God at work. The lenses must be clean and free from blemish for the light to focus properly, and just so we must with God’s help lead clean lives.
Keller’s last point was that the light of a lighthouse must never be extinguished. The analogy is that Christ’s light will never be extinguished.