Sharing my heart for families in cities

This week I was so grateful to share a post I'd written on The Gospel Coalition's blog about the severe lack of families in the urban church and the great need for them. Brad and I joke that my favourite questions are "how's the church plant?" and "how do you find living in the city with your three kids?", because seriously... don't get me started. I love getting to share my heart on the two subjects. It's one of the biggest reasons I keep this blog going and why I was so delighted to share with the broader audience of TGC.

Here's an excerpt:
Families are a particular blessing to the urban church and to cities, which makes their absence all the more frustrating. For the same reason families don’t want to move to urban churches, urban churches need them deeply. Cities can be cold and heartless, but a Christian family offers warmth and care. Cities can be competitive and rough, but a Christian family shows mutual serving and gentleness. A Christian family reminds the world that we need one another.

I have seen firsthand how my family has been a blessing in ways often overlooked in suburbs or small towns. Families offer grounding where the urban church can be evanescent. Families offer stability where the urban church can be transient. Families contradict the city’s sermon that “it’s all about you” and invite the urban church to serve and love and lead and disciple.

The challenges to city life with children are legitimate: high cost of living, less space, fewer schooling options, increased crime (if only due to the increased population), and so on. Several years ago on this site Kathy Keller wrote a compelling list of reasons why living in the city with children is wonderful. Even so, families give up a great deal when answering the call to urban ministry. But could it be that one of the ways we pick up our cross and follow Christ is to lay down our right to a yard and white picket fence? To lay down our right to a driveway and garage? To lay down our right to home ownership at all?

You can read the whole article on The Gospel Coalition blog.

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