Are We Relevant? by Travis Scharnweber

Grant Park Ministries has been a part of Roosevelt Community Church for over a decade. For the last 5 years, the focus of the ministry has been a weekly kids' Bible Study. The relationships that develop with the kids open up potential connections with many families in the Grant Park neighborhood. There are a handful of us at Roosevelt who have molded our entire lives around developing these relationships. In some cases, we end up with new family members! We have also opened up our lives to frequent heartbreak.

Regardless of how each relationship plays out, every interaction provides us with a chance to share God's love with those in the community. Through one relationship at a time over the years, we have established ourselves as a constant presence in the community, loving those God puts in our lives. 

Despite our continued commitment, it can be hard to know what the community thinks of us. Are we an annoyance? Are we a chance to get a free meal once a week? Are we a couple solid hours of child care?

Although these questions may creep into our minds occasionally, they are by no means a motivating factor for us in the ministry. We intend to obey God regardless of what the results are or what the community thinks of us. Nevertheless, it can be encouraging when we see evidence of our impact on the community.

Recently, Grant Park had their gym repainted. On the east side of the gym, they painted a mural of a group playing basketball, and a couple of the spectators should look quite familiar to those of us at RCC.

This mural confirms to us that what we are doing is, to some extent, making us a part of the community. That's pretty neat, but obviously, we're much more encouraged by the dozen baptisms in the last couple years that have directly resulted from the work God is doing in the neighborhood through our ministry. Through the power of the Spirit, we pray that more will come to follow Jesus as we continue our ministry in the Grant Park neighborhood. 

It’s Gary and Cindy Cloud!