Comfort comes with responsibility.
…the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, SO THAT we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
2 Corinthians 1:4
Comfort is the experience of future hope in the present. At Restoration, one of our core convictions is that the gospel calls us to lives of responsibility and coherence. As followers of Jesus we become obligated: To care. To see the world the way Jesus sees it.
We embrace Jesus’ instruction that,
…everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required…
For most of us who show up on Quincy Street, this church has been a means of God for our comfort. It is not necessary an alleviation of pain, but it is a clear reminder that God walks with us into it.
When we get here, we look around and we see friends— friendships that have most often been forged in smaller settings: one on one coffees, play dates between your kids, golf outings; serving on a team at AFAC, volunteering with RiLA, going with a group to one of our global partners; pouring over a small group Bible Study, being prayed for after a service, being a volunteer who helps make our liturgy happen.
You have experienced the comfort of being known, the comfort of friendship, the comfort of being a part of something that is bigger than your single life.
So, if Jesus and Paul are right… and we are comforted so that we may be able to comfort others… then one of the most practical ways we can do that is by giving our resources to the establishment of the thing that comforted us. In our Restoration context, we are responsible to give our time, treasure, and talents to church planting, which is the creation of communities of hope.
To start, over the last couple of years, we have increased our investment in 2 long term projects in Cambodia and West Asia.
Now we are beginning to aim our resources at the possibility of 2 or 3 local church plants in the next few years. To that end, we have created a Church Plant Steering Team. This team is seeking to hire a church plant resident in 2017 who would be looking at a church plant location inside the beltway in Maryland or Virginia in a couple years. All of this has been imagined in our strategic plan called, Restoration 2019.
Every single one of us will be involved in ‘being a comfort’ by praying and giving towards this effort. Most of us will remain a part of the work God is doing through Restoration on Quincy Street. But, some of you will go and experience the tangible joy being a comfort by inviting others into an experience of hope.
This is where it gets fun.