What Makes an Organization “Christian?”

Here at Johnson County Christian Lodge we work very hard at showing God’s love in very tangible ways to thousands of individuals, however we sometimes have encountered people who accuse us of being non-Christian.  These accusations usually come to us from those we have been serving with free food, free lodging, free counseling, free medications and free assistance in obtaining documents such as birth certificates, driver’s licenses and social security cards but who feel there should be no rules about how to behave in our facilities. It also comes from those who don’t feel that they should have to do daily chores to keep our shelters clean and sanitary.  In other words, to be “Christian” you have to be like Santa Claus.  “Give me what I want, when I want it with no responsibilities attached.”  That is not “Christian.”  It is “welfare.”  Goods and services obtained without sacrifice on the recipient’s part have no value to them.  A large part of what we do here at JCCL is help teach residents to be responsible for their own actions.  That’s part of being a “Homelessness Recovery Center” and not just a shelter.  Teaching new life skills and attitudes are the only way to bring about lasting changes in a client’s life.  If our residents aren’t actively involved in their own recovery we really can’t help them.  If we put more effort into their recovery than they do recovery will not take place.  We do everything we know how to assist and direct those who are actively involved in their own recovery.  Those are the ones who follow the house rules and do their chores.  Those are the ones who turn out to be successful in finding and keeping permanent housing.  Using scripture as our guide we refer to 2 Thessalonians 3:10 where Paul states:  “For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”  We welcome all who are willing to expend the effort to improve themselves.

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