The 15th Annual Community Block Party at Danville Baptist Church is tomorrow night. It’s absolutely the most exhausting and most exhilarating weekend of the year for me.
The basis of the party is GRACE, so everything is free. Everything. Hamburgers, hotdogs, snow cones, funnel cakes, cotton candy, popcorn, drinks… all free. School supplies… free. A gymnasium cram packed full of every imaginable yard sale item you can think of, enough clothes to clothe a village, furniture… totally free. Live music, great door prizes, games for kids, fireworks… Yep, free. All you have to do is show up.
So, there you go. You’re invited! It’s fun and you don’t want to miss it!
Now I want to talk about what goes on behind the scenes.
This is the single biggest mission/ministry project our church does. It’s huge and it’s a lot of work. The sheer size of it sets it apart from anything else we do, but what makes it special for me is what I see happening WITHIN the church during this weekend.
We are a typical church. We don’t all get along all the time. Heck, some of us don’t get along ANY of the time. If our pastor hasn’t rubbed you the wrong way at least once, then you haven’t been here very long (Hi, Bro. Jack). We disagree about what kind of services to have…. traditional or contemporary. We can’t all agree on music… some people think it’s too loud and some think the louder the better. We can’t agree on Sunday night service… some people love the idea of small groups in home settings and some people think if you’re not physically sitting on a pew, then it’s not church. You get the picture. We’re all different and no matter how hard Bro. Jack and the rest of the staff try to please everybody, it simply cannot be done.
But then Block Party week arrives and something magical happens. Everybody forgets what they were mad about. It’s like all the excuses and pettiness fall away and everybody just shows up to work. All the cliques disappear and you find 22-year-olds working side by side with 72-year-olds. There will be 200+ church members decked out in red t-shirts working together to show GRACE to our neighbors. It is a beautiful, beautiful thing. I know Block Party is about taking a day to love on others, but without even realizing it, we are loving on each other too.
Jesus loves the Block Party, and so do I!